"My mission is to empower people of all ages, races, and body sizes to embrace the body they have been given and learn to love themselves so they can live their dreams."
-Sarah Maria

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"Working with Sarah Maria has helped me to see that I am inherently loveable, beautiful, and valuable, no matter what. She has given me tools and techniques to break free from self-hatred and put love in its place. I am incredibly grateful for her and her incredible program. I recommend this book for anyone who wants to love her body and lover her life."

-Gabrielle Forleo, age twenty-six

Program Consultant,

Chopra Center for Wellbeing

 

"Sarah Maria's teachings are an amazing gift. It's an outstanding program that has changed my life! I highly recommend Sarah Maria's program to anyone who wants to experience living their most successful, beautiful life."

-Mary Schmidt, age forty-five

 

"Sarah Maria has shared many tools with me. But much more important to me, and what has been most meaningful, has been her quality of compassion. It is a gift and is like a gentle, deep awakening. Sarah Maria is a remarkable individual who works with the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual person. I cannot thank her in a way that seems adequate"

-Leigh Ann Jones, age fifty-four

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Body Image & You

Body Image in Adult Women

Dissatisfaction with your body can happen at any age but it is especially hard to avoid when approaching middle age. Age can slow your metabolism and cause many unwelcome body changes. If you've had children, pregnancy has taken its toll on your body as well. It is easy to feel out of control and like a failure in today's body conscious world, especially as you approach your 30s and 40s.

Fighting against the stream of constant media images, your own high expectations and the onslaught of age related changes takes more than just willpower. Consider implementing these tips to improve your body image and mental wellbeing:

  • Limit your media exposure or types of media you indulge in- Do you feel awful after flipping through a fashion magazine at the hairdresser's? Do internet images or television images stick with you long after you have looked away? Go on a media "diet" by eliminating those magazines, shows or sites that feed your dissatisfaction. You might need to throw out the Victoria Secret catalog when it comes in the mail, but are you really missing anything?
  • Define beauty by other means- There is no need to buy into the belief that thin, young and perfectly proportioned is the only standard in which beauty can be measured. Find adult women you admire that don't fit the standard cookie cutter mold and emulate them. Admire your own strength or endurance. Respect your creative spirit or the gifts you have cultivated over the years. Recognize that beauty is more than just appearance.
  • Dress to please?yourself- Be mindful of your wardrobe. Choose styles and colors that are flattering on you while still making you feel good. Create a style of your own. Use accessories such as scarves, wraps or jewelry pieces to jazz up your wardrobe. Wear things that make you feel your best.
  • Compliment others- By focusing outward instead of self-obsessing, it is easy to find one genuine trait to compliment people on. Tell the bank teller you like her earrings. Praise the grocery clerk for her beautiful smile. Everyone has something that is beautiful about them. Point it out to them and you will find yourself surrounded by a world of people who are beautiful in their own unique ways.
  • Accept compliments- Alternately, the more you pass out compliments, the more likely you are to receive them. Graciously accept any compliments that come your way. Do not dismiss them or rationalize them away. Accept them for the treasure and truth that they are. If someone compliments you, say "Thank you" and smile. A compliment is a gift. Don't refuse it.
  • Talk to yourself?positively- The most powerful words you will hear all day are in your own head. Your own self talk not only sets the stage for positive or negative feelings but they become the truth. Negative self talk decreases your energy and vitality while adding nothing constructive to the situation. Alternately, positive self talk increases your energy and spurs you on to greater things. You'll accomplish much more by being kind to yourself.
  • Be cautiously aware- If you have struggled with an eating disorder in the past, you might find yourself with a renewed food, diet or exercise fixation. Relapsing into old bad habits or even developing new ones is possible as an adult woman. Be diligent about adopting healthy habits in moderation. Seek help if you feel yourself spinning out of control.
  • Cultivate an inner peace- Prayer or meditation is an excellent way to refocus on what truly matters. By spending a concentrated time focused inward, you can consciously readjust your inner dialogue.

Learning to love yourself as you are takes a lifetime of practice. But with each new age come new benefits and challenges.

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