According to the National Eating Disorders Association, “body image is how you see yourself when you look in the mirror or when you picture yourself in your mind” and further encompasses what you believe, feel, and sense about your own body.
A negative body image has many influences, though battling such notions can be damaging to overall mental wellbeing and spark an eating disorder.
Overcome such distortions and negativities and learn how to build a better body image with these 10 easy steps!
How to Love Your Body in 10 Easy Steps
1. Appreciate Your Body
Rather than fixating on the body’s appearance, start appreciating all that it can do. So whether it be working towards a college degree or leading a company project, reflect on how the body is your vehicle to drive you to your goals and dreams.
Also appreciate how the body allows you to celebrate all of life’s gifts, including dancing at a wedding, laughing with your loved ones, and waking up to experience a new day.
2. Think Positive
Replace negative thoughts with more positive ones, as doing so can mitigate mental destruction and help build a better image. Start recognizing when you are thinking negatively then quickly back it up with a few quick affirmations.
For instance, if you becoming frustrated over the 15 pounds you want to lose, shut down such a thought by priding yourself in the 15 pounds you already lost and all the lifestyle changes you have made to get there.
3. And Surround Yourself with Positive People
Swarming in a sea of pessimism can be mentally draining and physically harming. Pull the plug on and detach from such negativity and surround yourself with more optimistic people.
Immersing yourself in a strong, loving, and supportive environment helps you feel good about yourself, as they love you for you (not the negative perceptions you view of your body).
4. Make A Nice List
Make a list of at least 10 things you appreciate and love of about yourself that are unrelated to weight and appearance, including your intelligence or creative mind.
But after making it, don’t just put it in a drawer only to find it months or even years later. Keep your list in a common area, read it often, and add to it to become aware of more things you love about yourself.
5. View Yourself as A Whole Person
You are not defined by the sole areas you feel uncomfortable with, but rather a whole person exuberating many strengths.
So when standing in front of a mirror, do not focus on specific body parts and start viewing yourself how you want others to see you as, including a fearless team leader or dedicated student.
6. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
With social media and the pressures of society, it is not too uncommon to compare your body to others and strive for the quote unquote “perfect.”
However, constantly comparing can start make us feel like we don’t stack up to others and make us feel more insecure.
Ultimately, no body is built the same and that is pretty definitely special.
7. Dress Your Best
Rather than slumping in slouchy sweatpants or baggy clothing, dress to impress!
Feeling your best ignites self-esteem and transcends into a more productive, confident, happier you.
8. Show Compassion to Yourself
We tend to be our toughest critics, but it is important to blackout such criticisms and show compassion to yourself.
Treating yourself as you would a spouse, friend, and family member can deepen self-love and lead to positive body image.
9. Make the Most of Your Time
Rather than wasting precious time obsessing over and worrying about diet and weight, start using using that time on more positive and proactive tasks.
Unleash negativities and gain physical and mental strength by exercising, getting out in nature, and volunteering.
10. Grant Self-Care
Let your body know you appreciate it by offering it self-care, which is vital to our overall well-being and neglecting it can severely take a toll to mental and physical health.
Granting yourself self-care nurtures healthy relationships, boosts positive feelings, relieves stress, and improves self-confidence.
Allow yourself to focus on what your mind and body needs consistently, including a day off from work, a massage, a light jog to clear the mind, or simply a journal to write down thoughts.