07/14/2012 10:30 am ET Updated Sep 13, 2012

Become Fearless About Your Body

This past weekend, sitting on the beach, I hear the clicking of a camera. I look up and realize that my friend has snapped a funky-angled picture of me in a bikini. My kneejerk reaction is to wrestle the camera out of her hands and delete the photo. In that moment I witness all of my old body-image issues resurfacing before my eyes.

No matter what shape or size we are, getting into a bathing suit can be traumatic. With several pool parties and beach days ahead, we must face these feelings in order to truly enjoy the summer. To help you overcome your own insecurities, I've outlined three steps for a healthy beach-body image.

Step One: Looking Hot Is An Inside Job

We all come in a different and unique packages. Accepting what you have is a key component to a healthy body image. Take time to focus on the good stuff and celebrate what you love about your body. Think of the strength in your legs that allows them to climb the steps to the train each morning, or those toned arms that can juggle groceries or a baby. If you embrace the gifts you've been given, you'll focus less on what you think you don't have. The sexiest people are those who exude inner beauty and confidence. The more comfortable you are with what you have, the more happy you will feel and the more attractive you will become.

Step Two: Get Moving

Whenever I do some kind of exercise before heading to the beach I always feel more confident in my bikini. Not only does physical exercise immediately tone your body, but it also makes you feel great about yourself. If you tend to be uncomfortable getting into your bathing suit, make sure to get some exercise before you hit the beach.

Step Three: Beach In Good Company

One of the best ways to feel confident in your bathing suit is to be around people who make you feel good about yourself. Become more mindful of the company you keep and hang with good folks on the beach. Kind, nonjudgmental friends will make you feel safe regardless of how little you may be wearing.

Practicing these three steps will soften your insecurities and raise your beach-body confidence.

For my free body-love meditation visit

Gabrielle Bernstein is the bestselling author of Spirit Junkie and Add more ~ing to Your Life. Her forthcoming book is called May Cause Miracles. She is also the founder of, the social network for women who want to find mentors and be mentors.

For more by Gabrielle Bernstein, click here.

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