Most women experience some form of negative body image throughout their life. There may be times where we may like parts of our bodies, tolerate our bodies, or accept our bodies. Then there are times when we really dislike them, loathe them, or long for the time that we were smaller, firmer, younger, swearing that if we could get back to that shape, then we could love and appreciate our bodies. But I don’t know many women that L O V E their body. We try. But are we trying hard enough? Here are the 5 ways that you could be contributing to your negative body image:
- You weigh yourself too often. Weighing yourself daily or multiple times in a day will make you feel worried about every step you take. It is normal for our weight to fluctuate 2-4 lbs on a regular basis. Learn your margin so that you don’t beat yourself up when you are on the higher end. Weighing yourself once per week is appropriate. Anything less and you could let yourself get off track faster than you would like. Anything more and you are punishing yourself.
- You indulge in fashion media. If you are reading magazines, browsing ad campaigns, and obsessed with the runway, then take a step back. Find a balance by looking at fashion icons that embrace normalcy. If you are always comparing yourself to the runway then your ideal of normal and healthy will be skewed. Fashion is only fun if it makes you feel good!
- You embrace a fitness mantra that promotes ideas such as “Look good naked,” “Get ready for bikini season,” or “Skinny is sexy.” If you create mental stress and anguish about your physique while you are working out, then you are less likely to shave the pounds. Stress drastically impedes your fitness goals! Workout regularly for health and your body will find its natural shape.
- You keep company that is obsessed with looks. Whether this is your girlfriends that are constantly talking about looks, fashion, weight, hair, or guys that are making comments that equate a woman’s worth with her looks, the company you keep will have the greatest impact on how you feel about you. Surround yourself with people that are beautiful inside too!
- You consume “diet” foods. These are your low-cal, low-carb, diet, fat-free, etc. foods that send the message that you are fat and must be skinny. These foods are often times missing the essential ingredients that make them good for you. Learn how to read a food label, adjust your calories, and boost your nutrient intake. Eating foods that are good for the body are good for the mind.