Throughout the week of October 7-12 there have been quite a few bloggers exposing themselves online. Before your mind wanders to any dark places, let me clarify exactly what exposing means in this case. I’m talking about the Exposed Movement, which was started by a blogger named Mish back in 2009. Mish got the idea for the Exposed Movement after deciding that she was tired of hating the way she looked and wanted to instead celebrate her body and all that it has done for her. She forced herself to see her own body in a different light and focused on its strengths rather than scrutinizing every little imperfection.
What happened next was a revolution of sorts. Men and women started coming out of the woodwork to take part in the Exposed Movement. One by one bloggers began posting photos of themselves at their most vulnerable (which was often in a bikini or underwear) in order to put it all out there. Rather than focusing on their flaws, each blogger wrote about what they love and appreciate about their own body. Here’s a few of the bloggers that took part in the movement in 2009, 2010 and again in 2013.
Carla, Miz Fit Online
Prior to taking part in the Exposed Movement in 2009, Carla had a little hesitation about how others would view her body. She feared that many would view her as “already fit” and it may lessen the impact of her appreciation for what her body can do. By exposing herself Carla focused on what she is most thankful for in regards to her body, which includes her eyes, brain, legs and overall health. She learned that if she gives her body the nourishment it wants, it will be good to her in return.
Four years later, Carla is very much the same person but admits that she is older and wiser. By revisiting the movement four years later she was reminded that yes, she wants to be an active mom who stays fit and healthy – but her most important and exposing traits are in her words.
Emily, Authentically Emmie
Emily’s first experience with the Exposed Project (which was in 2010) left her feeling proud. She was proud to be amongst a group of other brave, supportive bloggers who were celebrating their bodies rather than tearing them apart. She was able to embrace her body for all of its strengths and what it has done for her at various stages in her life. The photo she posted celebrated the body that she had at that moment, rather than focusing on what she wanted it to become.
Three years later, Emily embraced the movement with a different approach. She points out that “bodies like hers” are often shown in a shameful way, hiding themselves. In stark contrast, Emily proudly posted photos of herself wearing a bikini and confident smile. Emily states that the progress that she’s the most proud of (since originally posting in 2010) is how she’s able to see herself . The real progress has been in her own mind.
Karen, Karen C.L. Anderson
Karen is a big advocate for spending more energy fixing the emotional self rather than the physical self. When she posted in 2010, Karen admitted to abusing her body in the past by hating it, eating too much food and not moving enough. She was then able to make peace with her body and make sure it is safe, healthy and loved.
When Karen looked back at the original post three years later, she realized that back then she was still very much in the process of making peace with her body and trying to prove something. She was also scared to post the photos of herself. Now, she is truly proud of her body and unafraid of what others think. Karen says that health is truly a state of mind and body size/type isn’t an indicator of overall health, despite all the chatter out there. She believes the journey to a healthy body is mostly emotional and spiritual…an “inside job.”
Roni, Roni’s Weigh
In 2009, Roni pondered the question “what do you love about your body?” Even though she had lost 70 pounds by eating well and exercising regularly, Roni still battled with negative thoughts about her body and “feel fat” moments. She was still very much a work in progress. Roni was able to appreciate her body for its ability to change, be healthy and strong, and that its allowed her to live life to the fullest. She also loved the fact that her body was able to grow and nurture a life (her son).
Roni followed up the original Exposed post one year later when she was pregnant with her second child. She started having more revelations about her own body and that it was the same body whether it was fat, thin, young or old.
In Roni’s updated post, four years after the first, she states that in 2009 she was delusional about what her body looked like. Roni writes that she still sees her own body as thick or chubby because it doesn’t look like the stick-thin supermodels that grace the pages of fashion magazines. Admitting that is the very thing she is exposing in this post. Even though posting the photos pushed Roni far from her comfort zone, she has realized that the real exposing that she has done has been the realization that so much of it was in her own head (and not what she looked like on the outside).
images used with permission