Body Beautiful: Finding Authentic Beauty in Self-Acceptance

Supermodel Emme

Known for her advocacy work in creating a more body-positive society, supermodel Emme has made it her mission to incite a cultural shift in the status quo. Her 2016 #BodyBeaUtiful project, co-sponsored by Sierra Tucson and Timberline Knolls, featured videos and messages of individuals who shared their personal stories and joined the #BodyBeaUtiful conversation. We started our own conversation with Emme about this monumental movement from body dissatisfaction to body acceptance. Here’s what the TV personality, author, brand spokesperson, motivational speaker, lecturer, and, most important, mother, had to say:

Q: What does it mean to accept your body just as you are?
Emme: We accept our bodies just as they are when we desperately want to stop negative self-talk and find relief from body bashing. By giving in to a healthy change, we are finally able to accept who we are at any given minute, day, or moment. By learning new tools of communication – consciously forgiving family members, friends, and those to whom we are connected for the negative body culture they may portray – we then accept complete responsibility for ourselves and our feelings, regardless of what others may feel, say, or do. Ultimately, we set ourselves free.

Q: How can you change your mindset from shaming your body to loving your body?
Emme: Like training a family pet, we need to train ourselves to unlearn that which has been ingrained in our minds of how an individual must look, act, and project himself or herself to the world. Additionally, to further shape-shift our thinking, brushing up on the facts about our bodies and ourselves is helpful to solidifying what we think and how we feel the next time we look in the mirror or comments are made about our physical appearance. For instance:

  1. Educate yourself on the three natural body types: ectomorph, endomorph, and mesomorph. Determine which one your body naturally gravitates toward and embrace it, allow it to be, and honor it.
  2. Learn about myths around health and fitness. For example, an article in The New York Times, written by exercise scientist and researcher Steven Blair, set the record straight that being thin does not equate to being healthy or physically fit. Good health and fitness come in all shapes, sizes, and weights.
  3. Begin to speak and think positively about yourself. I write on all my mirrors (and you can, too, with grease pens) affirmations such as: “You rock,” “I love you,” “Slay, sister, slay!” “Go there and be your bad self” and “You are BEAUTIFUL.” Each time I walk by, those encouraging words are staring me in the face time and again. Self-care starts with you and me! Creating positive self-talk will change your mindset gradually by being surrounded by positive words and sayings, as well as choosing friends who lift you up just the same.

Q: What does the term Body BeaUtiful mean to you?
Emme: Body BeaUtiful means being the you that you were created to be, not living as someone else or trying to attain someone else’s body. To be real, genuine, unique, bold, special, and divine, at all costs. Naturally.

About Our Eating Recovery Services

Sierra Tucson’s Eating Recovery Services provide comprehensive treatment for individuals (18 years and over) struggling with disordered eating as a co-occurring condition. Residents benefit from our wide range of medical and clinical services that address disordered eating and simultaneously treat primary diagnoses such as depression, anxiety, trauma, chronic pain, or substance use disorder. For more information, call our Admissions Coordinators at (800) 842-4487.