It’s unlikely you’ll be surprised to find out there are very few personal hang-ups which affect dating as much as age and weight. These topics infiltrate nearly every area of our lives and of course, the surplus of negative feelings can usually be traced back to the media. It’s not that TV and magazines are totally to blame – of course not – but seeing celebrities in their 40s who look like siblings of their 25-year-old children, truly doesn’t help the layperson’s body image.
What also doesn’t help is our own individual body nostalgia that we lug around from moment to moment, relationship to relationship. Ones such as the memory of our own once svelte body after a particularly successful but long abandoned diet or, the gift of naturally toned muscles in our youth.
Sound familiar? When the old gremlins of insecurity come a’knocking at your door, here’s what you need to hold on to.
We know them, we’ve seen them in the wild at parties, strutting around offices or digging into seconds at a restaurant. It’s that wonderful, vibrant, confident plus-sized beauty, or graciously grey older person who simply oozes confidence. These people are the epitome of body and age acceptance, they know what they want and they simply go after it, or let it come to them. It’s not to say they don’t have hang-ups, they simply don’t make their body or age one of them, all the time. The fact is, if you’re confident, love yourself and you project that there is nothing sexier. And this is why the next point is so important.
Making better use of your time
There is so much focus of the external that most people forget they’re more than this – a lot more. The surest way to boost your confidence is to spend less time and money fixing your packaging and much more on what’s going on internally.
Diet plans and gym memberships can be wonderful aids in achieving the goals that will provide you with that much-needed boost, but getting to the root cause of your insecurities is a much surer bet. Try this: invest in a therapist or coach who can help you understand why you eat pasta at midnight, choose a physical activity you actually enjoy like walking or dancing, reassess relationships with people who make you feel small, disempowered or old.
The changes don’t have to be huge and earthshattering to positively affect your wellbeing and self-esteem. You may be surprised.
Embrace who you are now
If there’s one thing we all have to do its age. There’s no way of getting around it, not really, and definitely not permanently. Whether we do it gracefully or regrettably is entirely up to us.
The question in relationships is not whether you look good enough for your partner, or whether they’re going to leave you for a younger, fitter model. The question is whether you can embrace the man or woman that you are now, and not who you were 20 years ago. Can you look at your larger stomach, thinner hair and accept (even if you are working towards different goals) that you are a different person, with a shape and history which reflect it?
Respect the new you, be fluid with it. Trust it.