Shaughna Phillipshas candidly discussed her journey to body positivity, and reflected on how unhappy she was when she was slimmer.

The Love Island star has long documented her journey to find body positivity, and urged her 1.5 million Instagram followers to “separate (their) happiness from (their) body image”.

Shaughna, 27, said of some ofthe throwback photos she recently shared: “I picked apart my body in so many different ways. I always felt like the big girl, I was so self conscious. I just didn’t think I was very worthy of anything.

“Looking back, I just want to give that girl a cuddle because I was fine, but I missed out on so much life, just because I was worried about what I looked like.”

She continued: “Ultimately, the kind of message I’m trying to get across is that we need to separate our happiness from our body image, because we wrap up so much importance and so much of our happiness into what we look like – but we’re fine as we look.”

Shaughna went on to say that she exercises “for the mental benefits”, and branded herself “a horrible person” when she doesn’t work out.

The Strictly the Real Full Monty dancer further divulged into her difficult relationship with body image after sharing a string of photos of herself while on Love Island, and on previous holidays.

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“When I met with a therapist during the casting process for Love Island, one question they asked me was ‘how do you think you will cope with trolls ridiculing your looks and your body?’ And to be completely honest, it was something I knew would inevitably happen, but worried me the least,” Shaughna penned.

“Not because I was this confident, words can’t hurt me kinda girl, but because I have always been my own harshest critic. In fact, my answer to the therapist was ‘nothing any troll will say to me online is any worse than what I already think about myself’.”

She went on to describe herself as once being her “own biggest troll”, and has since realised “how important it is to be our own biggest fan”.

“Now I realise it really doesn’t make any difference what size you are!,” Shaughna went on.

“The real difference is how good you FEEL. It's about finding time in your day – just for you – knowing that you respect yourself enough to make the time to work on being the happiest you can be! Trust me, I know from experience that just being “skinny” won’t do that… It’s learning to love and respect who you are that will make you glow from the inside out.”

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