10 Tips For Enjoying Time At The Beach

If you’ve had body image issues you know all about the feeling of beach dread – that ball of anxiety in your stomach at the thought of being in swimwear in public. The increased heart rate as you get closer to the beach and realise it’s going to be time to take off that T-shirt and reveal yourself in swimwear to the world. That inexplicable, irrational feeling that the whole world will stop and look at you and judge you, whilst at the same time thinking ‘oh nobody’s going to even look at me with this body’. It’s so tough to go to the beach with body anxieties but if you can get beach mind ready, you’ll be able to have a summer of fun and not fear.

If you have concerns for your body at the beach, download our free guide to getting beach mind ready, or download the app to sign up for a Mentor.

We hope you make it to the beach because you deserve it! Here are some tips to help you stay beach mind ready when the sun is out and you’re off to the beach.

  1. Wear Suncream: Firstly, let’s treat our body with the respect it deserves! This means taking care of it with high factor sun cream and lots of water to keep hydrated.
  2. Dress comfortably: Whatever you wear, make sure you feel comfortable in it. There’s no law saying swimwear needs to be skimpy, revealing, or tight! Choose something that you feel physically and emotionally comfortable in. There are huge ranges of summer gear for all genders and body types, find what works for you.
  3. Talk to your friends: For many going to the beach is a social activity with friends, friends who you love, but who may sometimes make you feel insecure about your body because of the confidence you perceive from them. Talk to them. Tell them you’re nervous about going to the beach and feeling exposed beside them. Chances are that they are not as confident as you think they are, and they will welcome the opportunity to talk openly about their feelings too. They will also tell you the truth that you don’t need to worry, that your body is beach ready.
  4. Find quieter areas: You don’t have to go to the most popular beach in the area. You don’t have to sit in the busiest spot of the beach. Find an area of where you will feel most comfortable; maybe that’s a bit further away, maybe that’s beside a group of people who have the same body shapes and types as yours or maybe that’s besides the toilets because let’s face it you’re going to have to drink a lot of water stay hydrated!! If you don’t want to be walking up and down the beach in your swimwear, good news is that you don’t have to. Find the space that you’ll enjoy and take your supplies with you so you can settle down for a while.
  5. Affirmations: Stay positive. Keep repeating small affirmations to help create your safe space on the beach. Don’t let the anxieties or external pressures negatively impact your mindset. You deserve to be on that beach. You are going to have fun on that beach. Your body is not a problem.
  6. Stay in your world: Keep your mind off how you and other people look. Immerse yourself in a book or a podcast or chill out to your favourite music. Close your eyes and meditate, relax, or have a snooze! (Again, remember that sun cream!!). You are at the beach for your enjoyment, either by yourself or with your friends, so stay in that world because that’s where you’re going to get your joy and your magic memories.
  7. See what beach bodies really look like: Maybe just getting to the beach and staying in your own little world is the best achievement for you today, and that’s amazing. But if you feel a bit more confident, why not have a look around. Look at the other bodies on the beach. You’re more than likely going to realise that those media portrayed beach bodies aren’t the majority. You realise that there are all body types, shapes, and sizes on almost every beach in the world. Hundreds of people with different stories, experiences, and futures. Our bodies don’t tell the story of our lives and should not be how people judge us. But our bodies help us live our lives and should be respected for their ability to do that. You won’t remember what they look like, they won’t remember what you look like but by looking around you’ll see what a beach body really is, and you’ll know it’s not just one body type.
  8. Photos are never compulsory: If you feel self-conscious about friends taking photos of you, simply tell them not to. You don’t have to have your body plastered all over social media. But don’t miss out on the memories either by hiding behind the camera. If you want to capture these moments, take photos of yourself and your friends from the shoulders up or go for that famous shot of the toes with the water in the background. Do what makes you feel comfortable, but don’t miss out as there’s always more than one way to capture the moment.
  9. Dealing with show-offs: There will always be at least one. The show off. Is it the guy running up and down the beach with his six pack, shouting and laughing to make sure everybody sees him? Or is it the woman with the tiny waist posing as she forces here boyfriend to take 753 photographs of her in a variety of unnaturally posed positions on the beach? It doesn’t matter because you don’t care about them. Your mind may bring up feelings of jealousy but what do you know about them? Why do they feel the need for such validation? They are potentially using their body as a distraction from emotions that could be a need for intimacy, a lack of self-confidence in who they are, or an inferiority complex across different parts of their lives. We do not know strangers and we cannot assume their world is as rosy as they portray it. Do not judge yourself by them, do not aim to be them. Be you because you have so much going for you!
  10. Recognise your great day: You did it! You went to the beach, and you had a good day. The world didn’t implode, disaster didn’t strike. Recognise your achievement of doing something scary and feel proud of what you’ve achieved. One small step for man one giant leap for beach mind readiness!

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