I’m a big believer that if you want to make a change, you have to push yourself outside your comfort zone. Wanting change means that you want something different than what you have right now. But you’ll never get anything different unless you do something different.
For me, doing something different began three months ago when a Groupon for a Boudoir Photography Session landed in my inbox.
“No bloody way,” I told myself as I instantly thought of all my body issues. Then I paused.
How I feel about my body is one of the things I want to change about myself. So in spite of my fear and self-loathing, I decided to purchase it.
As usual, I put WAY too much thought into this activity. And WAY too much money. The process of prepping for my photo shoot was long and drawn out (Part 1, Part 2, Freak Out, Boudoir 1, Boudoir 2, Boudoir 3, Boudoir 4, Boudoir 5, Boudoir 6). But it was also a lot of fun.
I loved looking at other women’s boudoir photos. I loved shopping for lingerie, jewelry, and shoes. It was fun to check out hair and makeup on Pinterest.
But all the time, I kept wondering if I was going to chicken out. Could I go through with it? Had I not invested so much money in this activity, I might have skipped out on it. But I was financially committed, and that was good enough for me.
I learned a lot about myself during my photo shoot. To begin with, I was very good at asking for what I wanted. I’d done my research, I knew what I wanted. Even standing in a room with naught but my underwear on, I was able to tell the photographer EXACTLY what I expected. Kudos to me.
I also discovered that it’s okay to do it your own way. You don’t have to do it the way others do it. When I first started researching boudoir poses on Pinterest, it seemed every woman was a size 2 wearing a thong and a push up bra with thigh-highs, sky-high hair, and heavy makeup. That wasn’t me. I wanted to be dressed down and ready for bed. And that’s how I posed. Yes, it made for a lot of nudity but I enjoyed taking it off for the camera.
Not surprisingly, I got in touch with my sexy side. Now granted, she’s not that far away at any given time, but for my photo shoot, my inner vixen came out in full force. I used to avoid looking at my body in the mirror, and during the photo shoot, I stared at my body in the mirror. Definitely bodacious! Now I’m not saying I’ve been cured of my body dysmorphia, but I can say I take it all with a grain of salt now.
My final lesson was a lesson in limits. I learned that a self-limiting belief is only limiting until you LET IT GO. The old story I told myself was that I don’t look good naked – my legs are too thick, my butt is too big, and my stomach is too soft. I have constantly restricted my clothes and my activities in order to “hide” these flaws. But there I was at my boudoir photo shoot, putting them all on display for the camera. Suddenly, those “thick” legs felt strong and powerful. My “big” butt looked appealing, and my “soft” stomach felt womanly. I felt gloriously sensual, sexy, and all-woman.
THIS IS THE STORY I SHOULD BE TELLING MYSELF, NOT THE OLD STORY.
So my parting words of advice to all the ladies out there are: Book your own boudoir session. You won’t regret it.
And also? If I can get naked and post pictures to the internet, then you can definitely take whatever that first step is toward changing your own story.