-by Dawn Barendse


As the time draws near for the season of summer to peak, most of us still don’t have our “summer bodies” we promised ourselves we would have 8 years ago.

I have a few questions. What is a summer body? Who decides what it looks like? What are the benefits of having one? And of course, we know what it is, who decides what it looks like and the benefits of having one. If you don’t know, let me fill you in. A summer body is a body suitable for the weather in summer. Sundresses, shorts, vibes, you get the idea. Society decides what it looks like. Benefits? Men want you more than ever, you get more likes and followers on social media and to be honest, you’re just awesome in general. You’re considered the standard.

The rest of us, however, beat ourselves up for years about this summer body ritual that we have to go into before summer arrives. We almost never get it done and the years of saying we would just increases. We have felt bad all those years and probably still do, but I am here to tell you to stop immediately. You cannot live a happy life if you continue to want to achieve what society decides to be the best. And this may sound cliché but before you can make any improvement on what is on the outside, you need to work on what is on the inside first.

Have you ever thought about why you do the things you do to look good externally so often? If it is genuinely for yourself, then by all means go ahead and don’t stop until you’ve achieved what you’ve set your mind to. Let’s be honest though, most of us do it for other people. People who don’t even care. People who will probably always find fault no matter what you do. So, why try for these people when you can try for yourself. You need to choose you before anyone else can choose you. That means you need to choose your-not-summer-body-self, and you need to love her too, fully, before you try to change her – FOR YOU.

On a positive note, there is a lot more body empowerment than what there used to be. But there will always be more body shaming. The negative always wins. So, it is up to us as women to choose ourselves daily no matter what – and if you ever forget to choose yourself, here is a quote for you:

“Not one drop of my self-worth depends on your acceptance of me.” ~ anonymous.



More importantly, don’t forget to choose each other. Women need to choose each other – together we are greater and if we are greater, we are unstoppable.

Love & Light.


You can follow Dawn on IG at @dawnbarendse


Charnè is a 20 something-year-old blogger living in South Africa, with an immense love for makeup and all things beauty and lifestyle-related.

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