Four women with different body shapes

Women come in different body shapes and sizes. We know this because as soon as we were able to pick up a magazine, or in today’s case, use the Internet, we are told that these shapes include pear, apple, banana, and hourglass, among others. We are taught how to dress according to these categories to achieve a “balance,” hiding our real shape instead of celebrating it. If you’re looking to show your body some love and embrace the you have now, here are some ways to do it:

Give Your Body the Same Attention You Give Your Face

We all spend a lot of time and invest in products for the skin on our face, but we tend to forget about the rest of our skin. We can have , , rough arms — and ignore all of it because we can cover them up with clothes and footwear. Giving the skin on your body the same attention and care you do your face is the first step to appreciating your body more.

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Stop Comparing Your Body Shape to Fruit

It may be an easy way to understand and visualize different female body shapes. However, comparing our bodies to fruit is just another way of skirting around how we accept our bodies. When we categorize our bodies this way, the premise is that there is an ideal body shape — the hourglass, the shape that has the least to hide. It’s time we stop objectifying our bodies and associating a value with fitting into a specific mold.

Make Exercise More About Feeling Good 

Exercising can feel like a chore when we do it for the wrong reasons or achieve unattainable goals. Start making more about feeling good so you can go into it with a and enjoy it enough to do it unbegrudgingly. According to Harvard Health, find a “true motivator” that belongs to you and isn’t tied to what society expects of you. Maybe it’s staying mentally sharp, or feeling a sense of wellbeing every day, or being able to live independently in your age — whatever it is, make it about you. It’s your body!

Dress Your Body Affectionately

When we feel our body shapes changing, our natural reaction is to “fix it” with clothes. Did your hips get a little wider? Hide them with a longer top. Is your tummy a little bloated? Wear a forgiving maxi dress to hide the belly.

Dressing your body affectionately is different. It’s about putting some thought into what you wear, dressing the body with love and not shame. Stop trying to fit into old clothes that you’ve outgrown and giving yourself a hard time for it. If you can, treat yourself to a new piece of clothing — something that celebrates your body rather than hides it.

Think of Food as Nourishment

The mindset that focuses on body shapes is the same mindset that sees food in terms of risk and reward. Harvard Health cites that this can be a roadblock to having a healthy relationship with food. It can lead to binge eating or not getting enough nutrition because you’re not eating enough. But when we think of food as nourishment, we tend to make better choices and stop feeling guilty about eating. Listen to your body’s natural cues and eat with the intention of nourishing your body.

Don’t Force Body Positivity

Each person has a different relationship with their body, and it’s unfair to hold people against the same values. If you want to feel more accepting and loving of your body but feel like isn’t for you, don’t force it. You don’t have to publicly and proactively celebrate your body if that’s not realistic for you. You can try going for body neutrality, which is just having neutral thoughts about your body instead of negative ones. 

Women have different body shapes, and they all deserve to be . If you want to be more , try the tips above to feel healthier, happier, and more confident.