It’s that time of the year again: Bodies’ Week.
The time of the year when students on campus have an opportunity to showcase who they are: insecure, confident, unique and often covered in glitter. Thank you, SASS, for giving campus a chance to express and challenge itself to do something we have all struggled with: loving ourselves.
But sometimes loving ourselves becomes difficult, especially when braced with midterm exams, papers and projects. Reading Day comes to the rescue. Reading Day gives us time to stop and take time for ourselves. Regardless of how it’s spent, a day without classes lets us do what we need to — sleep in a couple of hours, catch up on an assignment, relax or get ahead with some reading.
The counseling center has also implemented several resources to aid those of us who need some help with various group programs, free counseling and information regarding other off- and on-campus resources. Campus clubs, like Student Health Advocacy Group (SHAG), emphasize mental and physical health and encourage it with activities open to Knox students that allow them to take a break from their hectic schedules.
The love yourself movement is spreading rapidly at a time when technology and social media challenge us to constantly compare ourselves to others. “Fitspiration” and photoshopping are placed side-by-side (and oftentimes used together) and set standards that aren’t always easy to maintain. Bigorexia, or muscle dysmorphia, is another scary trend that encourages an unhealthy mentality of muscle building to get bigger.
SASS’s Bodies Week is an important reminder that loving ourselves is a continual process everyone goes through. It reminds us that it’s important to reach out to others, not only to comfort yourself, but also to help others. Taking photos of one another and talking about our insecurities not only helps us to get over some of the anxiety we get when talking about ourselves, it also helps with the healing process of wounds we may harbor from painful past experiences.
There’s another thing Bodies Week begs us to remember — it’s okay to ask for help. No journey to recovery is fun alone, and it’s comforting to know someone cares about our progress. Campus resources are useless if students don’t feel comfortable reaching out to them; so much of healing is being willing to take the first step and choosing to begin the process.
This week’s Embers is dedicated to loving yourself and all of the steps leading up to it. Remember to take time for yourself, learn to love and treat every day like it’s Reading Day.