By Busisiwe Memela

Are we already in the festive season already? aaaaaah (runs screaming to her closet looking for her gym equipment). It’s that time of the year again where I convince myself I need to get that summer body. As winter ends and the last cold crisps of September wreck their vengeance on my dry skin, I officially begin my end of year panic. Where did the year go! I scream to myself.

My Instagram is now filled with fitness goals and mirror shots of flat abs and of course I start to panic. Oh no! I have to get a summer body too. So I start making plans in my head, calculating: ok it’s still spring, I can still exercise and eat healthy. There’s even an app that guarantees me a stomach like cement in just 30 days!

My photo gallery starts to fill with saved fitness quotes, because that’s all I’ve been looking at for a week, and I start making extensive diet plans (in my head of course nothing written down). I promise myself that I’ll go to the gym: even though I haven’t collected any membership forms. I prefer yoga anyway, is what I usually tell myself – but have never set foot in a yoga studio or tried to buy the DVDs. Don’t act like you don’t do it too, maybe on a different month. Every year it’s the same, I don’t know what it is.

Perhaps it’s the coming out of the crusty-lipped-making winter that always reminds me of all my physical inadequacies. After all winter is the month to stay indoors and stuff my face. Or maybe it’s the realisation that December is around the corner and I might not be ready to slay. Unfortunately for me, October is my birthday month so all my half-hearted exercising and planned dieting usually goes to waste. So November comes around and I finally buy that KFC in fake defeat (who am I kidding, I was never going to exercise anyway).

Instead, shortly after realising that I won’t make my imaginary summer body deadline, there is another summer something that takes over: my summer confidence. But they don’t sell that on Instagram.  Now look, I’m not advocating for an unhealthy lifestyle or saying that if exercising and dieting works for you shouldn’t do it. What I am saying is that for the rest of us, who spend half the year feeling confident and gorgeous with our bad selves, that maybe this year we should let the summer-body pressure go. This summer, continue celebrating the ‘you’ that has already been killing them all year. Trust me, the sun doesn’t highlight your flaws, it only makes your best attributes glow. So go out there for your beach holiday dressed in your perfect summer confidence like you’ve been doing all year. I know I will.