It's Beach Season (for most, I am still in Melbourne coming to the end of their winter)- but for those of you in all the warm places you are in the middle of the best time of the year- sunny days, warm weather, days off, barbecues, and the beach. For some, the beach is the most beautiful place and the most fun part about summer, for others, the beach is a terrifying thought and the last place they would want to be seen. Why is this? BECAUSE OF THE MEDIA! If you are reading this blog, then you have seen the countless ads and memes about being "beach body ready"...They are seriously everywhere. Whether it is a workout app, weight loss pill, or some waist trainer , we are all being sold the message that in order to go to the beach, you must have a certain body. EFFFF THAT! I am someone who bought that message, and fell deep down the rabbit hole of trying to find ways to loose like 30 pounds from April - end of June. I would put all this pressure on myself and had the fear of everyone pointing and laughing at me when I went to the beach. I would look at my friends who were much smaller than me and be so jealous thinking that they were so lucky because they didn't have to go through he same pressures as me. I was wrong, it didn't take long for me to learn that even my skinniest friend felt the same pressures. The beach was my most dreadful thought and I honestly felt like I didn't fit in / belong. Sometimes, I would find excuses to not go, or just lie and make up a reason as to why I had to bail. A lot of the time if I did go, I would wear a t-shirt , or shorts, and wouldn't even want to be seen in a proper bathing suit - even though my t-shirt would cling to me and show it all anyways lol!
It wasn't until I had moved to Santa Monica and was sitting at the beach when I realized that this whole " beach body ready" pressure was all a crock of shit. Seriously. As I sat at the beach, I was looking around and taking it all in. To my surprise, I noticed that nobody was paying any attention to me ( low key a little offended because I looked cute). All I saw was a wide range of people having fun with their friends and families. There was an even wider range of body types - big and small. I did not see 1 person point and laugh at a bigger person, or even give a whisper to their friend; everyone was honestly minding their own business and enjoying themselves.
For me, this was a bitter sweet moment. I was so happy to actually be sitting and observing, but I was also so heartbroken over the years that I knew I had missed out on. I was in such shock about the lies I had been fed so I came up with a little test.. I decided to go to the beach in a bikini - a very small bikini, to see what would happen. I walked around, played in the water and took some pictures. I promise you, not once did anybody laugh at me, point at me, whisper about me, or about anyone around them- again, nobody really cared that I was there. It was beautiful. From that moment on, I was 100% sure that this "beach body" crap was truly a marketing scam.
My challenge to is simple. I challenge you to go to the beach ( you can be fully clothed) and just sit and observe.Yup, that is it. I honestly want everyone out there to see the truth that I witnessed, which is everyone there is just interested in their family and friends, and having their own fun. Also, keep in mind that most of those people are also sharing the same insecurites as you because they have been sold the same message. Instead of being so worried about our bodies at the beach, we should be taking in the beauty of the experience- the sand, laughter, sunshine, and of course the beautiful water. Please do not be scared to enjoy such a beautiful place.
Anyone can participate in this challenge, and I encourage every single person that has feared the beach to give it a try for their own well being. If you would like to share your experience, please tag me using the hashtag #krisyeobeachchallenge - I would love to see how it went and share your story.
P.S. Below is a photo from my little experiment- if I can look like this on a busy day at the beach and not get laughed at, I don't know what else could change your mind.