As part of the #BeYourself campaign we have highlighted some members of the LGBTQI+ community that give encouragement and strength to #BeYourself, and we have opened a dialogue for them to share their thoughts and opinions. Michelle Marie is a model living in Mayo and an activist for promoting healthy and positive body image, embracing beauty in diversity, celebrating individuality and challenging beauty stereotypes by promoting beauty from within. Michelle is on body positivity crusade to help inspire others to embrace their bodies and relearn to love themselves. Michelle’s voice is part of a growing movement in the LGBTQI+ community advocating positive body image and helping overcome the huge pressure to conform to very specific body types.



Do you truly hate your size, or is it the way people make you feel about your size that you hate?
What if people stopped being so judgmental and stopped body shaming, would you feel so ashamed of what you see in the mirror?
I’m sure that there would still be changes you’d like to make, but would you be covering yourself up, afraid to be seen, and hating yourself to the core?
I know I wouldn’t.
Similarly with terminology…
‘Fat’ and ‘plus size’ are just words. Words intended simply to describe and differentiate. Instead they have become weapons. Too many of us rushing to label ourselves ‘fat’ because it has become synonymous with ‘worthless’, ‘ugly’, and ‘bad’. Too many of us living in fear that we will become ‘plus size’ because of the stigma and negativity that comes with it.
Imagine a world without all that.
Imagine a world where people didn’t judge others on their weight or size.
Imagine a world where all body types were considered acceptable.
Imagine being able to look in the mirror and not feel ashamed for existing.
Imagine being able to leave the house without the fear of mockery and scorn.
Well maybe we can’t change the attitude of the whole world, but we can try and change the attitude of our individual world. That’s what I’ve started doing. I counteract all the negativity I experience with good, positive thoughts about myself. I try to speak kindly to myself, and go easy on myself. I wear what makes me feel comfortable. I make choices that work for me, not what I think I should do. It makes a difference. It makes me feel stronger and more able to let any negativity wash over me.
Maybe, if we all start loving ourselves a little bit more, we can be stronger than the hate. Then the haters will get bored and shove off. And then we can all just let each other be to live life to their rhythm.
Imagine that.
Feeling inspired learn more about Michelle?
Instagram: @choccurvesmodel
Twitter: @choccurvesmodel