Absolutely positively problematic.

It’s not often I’m presented with an obstacle that’s way too high to scale, slick sides ensuring that any attempts to climb fail to find purchase. When it does though, I feel like not taking the chance to hurl my mass against it in order to knock the thing down is wasting that chance. So here’s my obstacle:

I have a hard time expressing positivity about my body in a public space.

It sounds like a trifling thing, but it’s enough to cause me to withdraw into myself out of anxiety. My body language gets tight and constricted. Then I basically do anything I can to not cry. It’s something I attempt to deal with by repressing my emotional responses for as long as possible. Clearly that hasn’t solved anything, because it’s very much still an issue. The last time this surfaced was with a panic attack at the dirty talk workshop back at Playground Conference. This time it was at a body positivity event at Oasis Aqualounge. The simple concept of saying something positive about myself in front of the group was challenging enough that afterwards I had to go off with my girlfriend and have time to express the feelings I was engaging with.

So for tonight, I’m gonna challenge this and try to list some things I love about myself, body and otherwise.

  • I have deep greenish hazel eyes. As a child they looked far more hazel, but over the years that colour has opened up to skew far more green than it ever had. They’re nice eyes and I love ’em.
  • I love my love of puns and wordplay, even when others don’t.
  • I think I can be quite clever when I’m switched on.
  • I have a talent for finding outstanding people to surround myself with.
  • I give love openly and sincerely. I make the people I love feel valued.
  • I’m getting better at learning to listen. I think it’s made me into a more open, warm person.
  • I’ve managed to write this project every day for over 2 years.
  • I unapologetically like the things I like.
  • I think that with the right pair of jeans, I can have a pretty nice bum.
  • I’m adaptable to new situations and do what I need to in order to survive them.
  • I’m still proud of myself for flying across the world and starting anew in order to keep growing as a person.
  • The people in my life generally stick around. I must be doing something right to attract them.
  • I’ve got a great jawline. It hangs a beard admirably.

That feels like enough for now. I’m a work in progress (as we all are) and I’ll keep at it.


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