What Happened When I Stood Naked in the Mirror Every Day

I challenged myself to stand naked in the mirror and compliment myself every day for two weeks. I’ve had experience with daily affirmations over the last couple years which I implemented at the recommendation of my therapist. Those affirmations were, however, aimed at altering my attitudes and mindset. I wondered if this practice could be used to develop a healthier body image as well. The answer, it seems, is yes.

 

It is challenging to rewire the long ingrained negative thoughts and emotions associated with our bodies, but I can now say from experience that it’s well worth it. This is what happened when I affirmed my physical appearance while standing naked in the mirror every day for two weeks.

This is What Happened When I Stood Naked in the Mirror and Complimented Myself Every Day for 2 Weeks

First Day

Honestly, the first day was really difficult. Even though I was by myself, being naked felt awkward and uncomfortable. I had decided beforehand that I would choose three things each day I liked about my body. However, as I looked at myself in the mirror, all I could see were the things I didn’t like about myself jumping out. I would acknowledge these negative thoughts, but allow them to drift aside as I searched for something positive. It took a while, but eventually I completed my first three affirmations, quickly got dressed, and carried on with my day.

 

First Week

To make it even harder, I didn’t allow myself to repeat any compliments for at least the first week. Day by day I had to scour my reflection to find three new things I could appreciate. Some days were discouraging as I stood there looking at myself for minutes and still couldn’t come up with anything. Then other days I would be pleasantly surprised when I discovered something new I found beautiful. Each day I took as long as necessary to say three physical affirmations.

 

Second Week

I broke through a wall on the second week. It felt like more of a game to come up with new body parts to appreciate. Nail beds aren’t something a person typically gets complimented on, but I discovered that I think mine are pretty great. I started to think outside the box, finding beauty in my eyebrows, ear lobes, back muscles, belly button, and toes. I was actually starting to have fun with it and looked forward to my new morning ritual.

 

Benefits

I typically did this in the mornings which, once I got into it, started my day off in a positive place. When I had self-critical thoughts, I acknowledged them, but instead of focusing on them, I moved on in search of something self-affirming. I think practicing this over and over trained my brain to let go of the negative and actively search out the positive. It re-framed my mindset when I looked at myself. It’s increased my self-esteem.

 

I noticed that my husband also seemed to be in a better mood, and when I asked him about it, he thought part of his increased happiness was because I had been more open lately. I know I became more comfortable giving and receiving physical affection with my husband, and I’m sure that didn’t hurt either. I also began having an easier time accepting compliments from him.

 

Future

While I no longer practice these three daily affirmations each day naked in front of the mirror, I do like to give myself a compliment every day or two when I am getting ready in the bathroom. This whole process has altered my mindset, and I am more conscious of my attitudes toward my body. I still see things I don’t like in myself, but I don’t get caught up fixating on them as much. I’m developing a healthy mind with which to experience my body.

 

I encourage you to take on my challenge. Stand naked in front of the mirror and compliment yourself every day for two weeks. Or start with your clothes on. Or do it for a different amount of time. Just practice affirmations that will cultivate a loving relationship with your body.

 

Stand naked & affirm yourself in the mirror every day for 2 weeks & see what happens Click To Tweet

 

What are your thoughts on body image? Do you use affirmations?

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32 Comment

  1. Reply
    Sonnet
    March 4, 2016 at 8:17 am

    Love this so much! I’ve been doing something similar and I’ve found that changing our attitudes and perceptions makes a huge difference in body love/acceptance. Thanks for sharing your story!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 4, 2016 at 10:08 am

      That’s awesome to hear! It’s so true that it makes a huge difference. Some people think affirmations sound all hippy-dippy or new-age, but they are literally changing the neural pathways in the brain meaning it’s quite biological and backed by science.

  2. Reply
    Michelle
    March 6, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    I think that I could definitely benefit from doing this… I’m just not sure I’m brave enough! I am still carrying extra baby weight that makes me very uncomfortable in my own skin. Thanks for sharing such a cool idea!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 6, 2016 at 9:55 pm

      I don’t have children of my own, but I imagine that after the changes your body goes through with pregnancy would be hard to adjust to. The affirmations were definitely a difficult practice at the beginning, but I encourage you to work toward it. 🙂

  3. Reply
    Leanne@crestingthehill
    March 6, 2016 at 10:38 pm

    What a really interesting idea – I’m struggling a bit with the changes that midlife inflicts on my waistline – I’m still in reasonable shape – so maybe focusing on the good bits and changing my attitude will make a difference – I’ll be giving it a try. thanks 🙂

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 7, 2016 at 9:39 am

      Yes, most time when our bodies change I think it’s hard for people to be okay with that. I hope this will help you in finding acceptance and appreciation for your body.

  4. Reply
    Lauren
    March 7, 2016 at 9:42 am

    I love this so much. Learning to loves our bodies seems impossible at times, but it’s so necessary!! I hope you have a wonderful day!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 7, 2016 at 12:29 pm

      I’m so glad it resonated with you. Have a wonderful day as well. 🙂

  5. Reply
    Alexis
    March 7, 2016 at 9:57 am

    I love this idea. My spouse told me about it a few days ago and then I ran into your blog. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 7, 2016 at 12:30 pm

      What fantastic timing! Thanks for stopping by.

  6. Reply
    shamira West
    March 7, 2016 at 10:08 am

    This is such an awesome challenge and way to really show yourself some love! It’s very interesting that your tried to do this naked, but i now see that women struggle with the imperfections that nobody sees on a daily basis because it’s covered in clothing. I love that you started off each morning with a positive mindset for yourself. It is so healthy to do that. I think everyone (both men and women) can benefit from this.

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 7, 2016 at 12:31 pm

      Thank you! Yes, doing the affirmations naked definitely added another challenge to it for me. It’s so true that men can benefit from this as well, great thought.

  7. Reply
    Daniela
    March 8, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    So much importance in this:

    “When I had self-critical thoughts, I acknowledged them, but instead of focusing on them, I moved on in search of something self-affirming. I think practicing this over and over trained my brain to let go of the negative and actively search out the positive. It re-framed my mindset when I looked at myself. It’s increased my self-esteem.”

    This goes beyond body image to work performance, trying new things, reaching outside of our comfort zones, making new friends, and going on with our daily lives. Good for you for sticking with this!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 9, 2016 at 12:48 pm

      That’s so true that this principle can be applied to all different parts of life, especially the scary ones. Thanks for the encouragement. 🙂

  8. Reply
    Martie
    March 10, 2016 at 6:15 am

    Wow…this took courage and determination, not only to do it, but to share it here. Thank you for doing so! What an awesome thing… to be able to increase your own self-esteem! That’s not easy to do for many people, because, as Vivian says in Pretty Woman, “The bad stuff is easier to believe”. It’s proven that confidence makes a person more attractive by default, so it’s something we should all try! 🙂

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 10, 2016 at 10:22 am

      Aw, what a true quotation. Our minds do seem to prefer the negative and believe it more easily. That’s why we’ve got to intentionally train it to do just the opposite.

  9. Reply
    Angelina @ Peonies & Orange Blossoms
    March 10, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    Oh I love this! Yes, I think this lets us to stop focusing on the negative and focus on the positive. Everyone will find *something* beautiful, no matter how thick or thin you are! I think the first place to start is the eyes, so interesting, so many colors even if you have “boring brown eyes”, you can find flecks of green, blue! Thanks for sharing this with us! Thanks for Sharing at Thursday Favorite Things!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 10, 2016 at 1:09 pm

      Aw, I love your comment about our eyes. That’s so true. When I was younger I didn’t like having brown eyes, but I really have grown to see the beauty in them.

  10. Reply
    Kim Cunningham
    March 10, 2016 at 4:32 pm

    I’m sure this was really difficult at first, but a lovely idea.

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 12, 2016 at 5:30 pm

      It was really hard, but so worth it.

  11. Reply
    Jenn Peters
    March 13, 2016 at 6:57 am

    Love this. So practical and yet (I know it will be) so difficult. We are our own worse critics and it’s so easy to list off the things that are wrong.

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 13, 2016 at 10:39 am

      Very true! My girl friends and I often can’t believe the things we think about ourselves when we confess them to each other. I think it’s so important that we learn to see and treat ourselves kindly as we would our friends.

  12. Reply
    Marina
    March 13, 2016 at 10:48 pm

    I love this idea so much! You are brave for doing this and for sharing your experience with us. Thank you! <3

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 14, 2016 at 11:08 am

      Aw, thank you!

  13. Reply
    Katherines Corner
    March 14, 2016 at 9:56 am

    love this post!!They you are beautiful. Thank you for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop link party. I featured your post today, pinned xo

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 14, 2016 at 11:10 am

      Thank you so much for the feature! I’m so glad you enjoyed the post.

  14. Reply
    Heather
    March 21, 2016 at 1:19 pm

    This was such an inspiring post!! Thank you for sharing your experience, I’m going to take this two week challenge!!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      March 21, 2016 at 4:06 pm

      I’m so excited to hear that you’re taking on the challenge! I’d love if you came back and let me know what you think afterward. 🙂 Enjoy your journey!

  15. Reply
    Linda @ thefitty
    June 25, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    This is so strong, and I’ve personally tried doing my own little self-affirmation through writing a gratitude journal!

    1. Reply
      Grace
      June 26, 2016 at 9:05 am

      Thank you! 🙂 That is so awesome! I love hearing about others using these methods as well.

  16. Reply
    Marci @ Stone cottage Adventures
    November 10, 2016 at 1:38 pm

    What a lovely post! This is a great idea! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

    1. Reply
      Grace
      November 10, 2016 at 1:44 pm

      Aw, thank you for taking the time to comment!

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