Yesterday I did my first bikini shoot in 4 years. It was a throw-away, like, the photographer said maybe, if we had extra time we’d do it.
Welp, we had extra time at sundown.
Um. Ok then. Upon realization, I had this knee jerk reaction at first: “HOLY SHIT I didn’t diet or prep or dehydrate or ‘lean out’ and it’s nighttime and my stomach isn’t as flat as it is in the morning, what if my gut is hanging out, and MY SADDLE BAGS! HOLY. My saddlebags! Maybe I should nix this? Say I’m not feeling it? Call it a day? Aaaaah!!!”
And then … I called bullshit on myself.
Three things came to mind right away:
1) “That’s not the kind of person I am anymore.”
And I don’t want to be that person again – a crazy dieting, insecure woman who is scared of her physique not looking “perfect” every second. Not that my reaction was uncommon or “bad,” it’s just about harnessing a conscious, “No thanks!”
2) “WHO CARES.”
What’s the worst that can happen? I get the photos back and I’m not in love with them? So what. My physique doesn’t define me. NEXT! And what’s the best that can happen? I see them and feel proud of my hard work in the gym, the fact that I feel feminine and probably the sexiest I’ve ever felt and proud of myself for going forward with the shoot even if I didn’t prep/diet and drank a couple glasses of wine last night. Awesome!
Isn’t it *my* choice how I respond to photos of my body? Don’t I get a say in how I perceive myself? I’m at an age/stage of personal development where I’m not constantly looking for approval that I fit into some arbitrary standard of what “the perfect body is.” And the fact that for a split second I got caught up in that borderline angers me. Lol.
3) “This is an opportunity to practice what I preach.”
In order to be in my integrity and in the spirit of showing up honest and transparent in all the places that matter — my business, my relationships (that includes with JillFit readers) and most importantly MYSELF — I have to put my big girl panties on and just do it. Show up, as is, own that shit, and stand for what I say I do: acceptance, authenticity, anti-perfectionism, confidence, moderation, self-compassion and #GSD (taking action).
So screw it. I did it.
Haven’t seen the pics yet but it doesn’t even matter what they look like because *the process* was the thing. The mental turnaround was magic. The opportunity to reinforce my values and who I want to be in the world was everything.
I know for some, this may seem like a really insignificant thing, like, WTF Jill, it’s only a picture. And they’d be right. But when historically, photos of yourself have carried so much weight (weight we *give* them BTW), it’s an amazing experience to question all the BS — IN REAL TIME! A really proud moment for me and wow, super empowering!
Thank you for sharing this little moment with me :) Xo, Jill