Sometimes you gotta take a risk. It’s how you break past your comfort zone and into uncharted territory that has the potential to push you forward towards the result(s) you’ve been wanting. For a long, long time I’ve wanted to be in love with my body. I’ve wanted to be OK with the way that it looks and moves and is shaped. I’ve wanted to stop poring over magazines and wishing that I had “this woman’s thighs” or “that woman’s breasts.” That had to change.

There’s a reason it’s called a “comfort zone.” It’s because it’s what you know and what you’re comfortable being/doing/having. You don’t have to worry about changing this or that in order to be something else when you’re in your comfort zone. You just are. The thing is, though, most people aren’t happy with their comfort zone. Still, it takes a hell of a lot of discomfort with a situation to step out and do something different. Making a conscious effort to change is by no means “comfortable.”

That said, I’m pretty open to risks. I love doing things that frazzle my nerves like perform in public, post videos of myself singing on YouTube, ride a subway with no pants, and getting my boobs painted at a party. Sometimes I feel like the more outrageous it is, the more likely it is that it will be easy for me to do it. But tonight I’m taking a risk that’s incredibly bold, especially considering my background: I’m being a nude model for a figure drawing class.

The thing I love about this is that I’m facing one of my greatest fears: People seeing my bare body, exactly as it is. No sucking it in or hiding it beneath clothing. Usually I get anxious leading up to events like this. This time, however, I’m noticing that the closer I get to the experience, the more at ease I am. I’m ready to just own it. To be comfortable in my own skin and let an artist portray that.

There are days when I still want to hide and call out of work (which is really hard to do when you live and work at the same place). Those days I know that I need to put a little more attention on myself and spend more time alone. I have a habit, as I’ve noticed many females do, of seeking attention from the opposite sex when I’m not feeling too great about how I look. You know what I mean: revealing clothing, flirting, fishing for compliments. What I’ve come to realize is that the more I look for that attention outside of myself, the more I’m kept from learning to completely love me, bloated belly and all.

You can take a risk every day to get closer to yourself and loving your own body. You can start with something simple, like telling yourself “I love you” in the mirror every day or listening more to how YOU feel about yourself instead of listening to the opinions of others. Going to the gym even though you don’t look like all the gym rats. Wearing something less than glamorous, or super glamorous, to go out. Looking at yourself naked in the mirror and complimenting every ounce of yourself. Anything that gets you away from the way you look at yourself now to looking at yourself as beautiful and perfect, right here in this very moment.

Author's Bio: 

Shannon Lagasse, Self-Love and Weight-Loss Coach, teaches women how to lose weight by ditching the diet and loving their body. By coming from a focus on pleasure, instead of discipline and deprivation, her clients are empowered to lose weight naturally, easily, and for good. Get your FREE e-book, "Why Diets Don't Work: 7 Keys to Weight-Loss That Don't Involve Food" by visiting

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