Friendships and Body Confidence With Jeannette Burchfield
All of us—all of us—have gone through body image issues at one point or another.
And guess what? It's completely normal and a part of human nature. That's why we were so excited to hear about a new, completely virtual conference solely focused on the body. BodCon 2021 will center on self-acceptance, and participants will hear from influencers and body-positive voices such as Hunter McGrady, Chrissy King, Allison Lang and many more.
We were lucky enough to chat with one of the panelists, Jeanette Burchfield prior to the conference (which is on Feb. 21.) Her panel will be focused on friendships and body confidence, and as a leader in the industry, she had a lot to say. Keep reading for our full, dynamic interview with Jeanette!
Sweety High: Tell us a bit about yourself!
Jeannette Burchfield: Day maker, quirk enthusiast and Curator of Joy. My goal is always to advocate for people everywhere and make them feel like the best versions of themselves especially in my plus-size community. My passion is finding joy in service, unity and encouraging creativity and imaginative thinking.
SH: What would you say is your main goal when it comes to social media and body confidence?
JB: I would say my main goal is to ignite joyfulness, and to be a mirror for people to help reflect the beauty that they truly are! It's such an awesome feeling to see representation! Coming up I didn't have too many people that looked like me and shared the same passion for quirk like I did. I want to share that it's totally okay to like you, and be a bit bizarre—it makes life fun!
SH: Your panel is all about friendships and body confidence—why is it so important to be supportive of our friends?
JB: I think being supportive to people period can just make all the difference! I've been told before that "people are my super power." Sometimes you just need someone to take some time to boost you up! Your friends can be your biggest cheerleaders. I normally try to compliment, say hello or give a nod to as many people I encounter! It's just a small thing I can do to confirm that "I SEE YOU"—you are here today and you're shining—keep that up! You never know whose day you can make.
SH: How should we show support to our friends? What should we NOT do?
JB: Thoughtfulness for me is always key. Keep in mind not everyone has the same heart as you. Our love languages can look different, and that's okay! Just willing to be there, being present, and sharing your time and your energy! This also makes friends feel seen and heard, even when you aren't physically with them. Things to avoid are friends and people that don't make you feel good. Maya Angelou has a quote that I keep in the back of mind: "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." Don't subject yourself to friends that don't make you feel welcomed and that are not courteous of your feelings. Surround yourself with people that will include you and value you! You deserve it!
SH: What is the biggest life lesson you've learned when it comes to loving your body?
JB: The biggest life lesson for me about my body would have to be just having a simple appreciation for my body! We are powerful and our bodies go through lots of changes in life yet still stick around and protect us! Not one body looks exactly the same and that's okay! My body is resilient, strong and powerful. Lots of things for me can look different in this body but it can be done if I'm willing to give it a try and not limit myself! I tell myself I get this one body—love it, because you don't get another one.
SH: What would you tell younger girls struggling with body confidence issues?
JB: I am a huge fan of body-positive affirmations. Find a few that speak to you and jot them down as a love note to yourself. Be sure to stick that on your mirror so you can see it everyday when you're looking at yourself! There is not another you! Your light, your very existence makes the world a better place. Treat yourself accordingly! Also it's okay to unplug and find a healthy balance in social media intake, that can be a major self-care moment! Lastly, comparison is the thief of joy. I've always heard that growing up and it has never resonated with me as much as it did until I started treating myself with care.
SH: How do you spread messages of acceptance?
JB: I spread messages of acceptance simply by sharing my positive radiant energy. I also often greet people with the ASL sign for love! It's a small gesture, but again it's me saying "I see you" and thank you for being you! I also love to share different narratives and perspectives other than my own as much as I can!
SH: Anything else our audience should know?
JB: Shine bright Starlights, you absolutely deserve to be treated with love and respect, and thank you for being you!
Interested in similar content? Look HERE for our roundup of body-positive TikTok accounts that need to be on your radar.