I know the term #bodypositivity has been thrown around a lot lately, but do you consider yourself someone with a healthy body image? As much as I’d like to think I do, I know I have moments where I catch myself making negative comments about my appearance. Whether it’s the way my clothes fit on a particular day or the way my thighs look compared to an Instagram post, I can easily get sucked into the vicious cycle of putting myself down and picking myself apart. I know from experience that staying positive about our appearance can be so difficult when we’re barraged with images of seemingly “perfect-looking” people everywhere we look. It can be overwhelming! So, we gathered some helpful suggestions that you and I can put into practice to help overcome negative body image.
1. Acknowledge the Negativity
Increasing body confidence starts with acknowledging all the negative self-talk or negative talk about others. Confront it head-on whether it’s a solo act or you and your friends frequently engage in body shaming. The next time your or someone brings up something negative, counteract it with something positive. You are all beautiful, intelligent, and have so much to offer. Sometimes you just need to remind yourself of that.
2. Develop Positive Self-talk
Practicing positive self-talk might feel a little unnatural at first. Self-deprecating humor is widespread and it might’ve become a habit to pick apart the parts of yourself you don’t love. Stop the hate and practice positive self-talk. Leave yourself upbeat and loving message for yourself on around your house. Appreciate your strong arms or compliment yourself on your athletic legs or butt. Celebrate and appreciate all that your body allows you to do every day!
3. Forget about Diets
Restricting your eating habits or eliminating certain foods rarely result in long-term success. Instead of focusing on the diets and the fastest route to weight loss, focus on achieving long-term health. Making small, healthy changes in the way you eat and exercising will help you lose weight and look and feel better overall. Remember, it’s not just about the number on the scale or the size of your jeans that matters!
4. Get to Know Your Body
Your genetic makeup is totally unique to you and that’s amazing! You may have inherited your mother’s petite frame along with your dad’s nose and long legs. Because of this, it’s unrealistic to try to achieve the same weight or clothing size as someone 4 inches shorter or taller than you. Do what feels good for your height, weight, and body type. Striving to be the best you can be. Love your body and your body will love you back!
5. Listen to Your Body
Many of us, including myself, aren’t aware of just how good our bodies can feel or what great things our bodies are capable of. When you eat in moderation and physically challenge yourself, you’re unstoppable. Take time to listen what your body needs so you can work together to look and feel your best. Be good to yourself by fueling your body with nutritious foods and developing good sleeping habits. Your body will let you know what you need/don’t need, you just have to listen!
6. Don’t Compare Yourself to Celebrities
Celebrities have glam squads, trainers, chefs, and even Photoshop to help them look the way they do. They don’t wake up looking like a million bucks, eat whatever they want, and effortlessly maintain a slim figure. They receive tons of help from professionals in order to maintain their appearance so it’s not a level playing field, and useless to compare ourselves to them. There’s nothing wrong with admiring celebs, but keep in mind that they’re basically paid to look good.
7. Surround Yourself with Positivity
Another important step to take toward a positive body image is to remove negative influences. This might be certain co-workers, TV shows, magazines, or websites. Limit or remove your exposure to any influences that glamourize super thin figures or certain body types. Replace those things with positive people and media. You can find tons of great resources online, including this site, themilitantbaker.com If you need help with healthy eating, figuring out an exercise regimen, or both, consult a nutritionist, personal trainer, or ask someone you trust to refer you to someone.
Now it’s your turn! Tell us in the comments how you practice body positivity or how you plan on being more positive. We can’t wait to read your comments!