Emily DiDonato is a six-time SI Swimsuit model, business founder and, most recently, a new mom. How does she do it all, you might ask? The answer is a clear mind and a reclaiming of her own personal sense of self and beauty. “Once I allowed myself to not funnel so much energy into wishing I looked like somebody else, I was finally able to just be happy with who I was,” she says. But her journey to self-acceptance was never an easy battle. At 31, she has only just recently begun to let go of that false inner-dialogue that once bullied her into believing she wasn’t beautiful just the way she is. DiDonato knows that we determine our beauty, not the beholder.
We all may feel immense pressure to appear a certain way in order to consider oneself to be beautiful by today’s societal standards. But DiDonato cautions, “Comparing yourself to others is just a battle you’ll never win.” Some might find it shocking to hear her talk about having body image issues growing up – “In middle school and high school I didn’t like my body,” she says now – but she has fought off certain unhealthy standards to come to her current place of acceptance.
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“There are these standards that are kind of put on us to look a certain way,” DiDonato explains. “I know that it’s so hard to not let them consume you and hard not to think about them all the time, but they take up so much mental and emotional space and just keep you down. If you allow yourself to free up that space, you'll find out how much you're capable of."
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