7 Reasons Why Having A Positive Body Image Goes A Long Way

Social media is flooded with images of apparently perfect celebrities with flawless bodies and unblemished faces. That can leave you feeling flawed and helpless as you struggle to accept yourself and enhance your body image. Body image may be positive or negative depending on how you think about your body. A person with a positive body image feels confident about his or her body type and embraces each imperfection without judgment. Do you wish to develop a positive body image and walk on the road to self-belief? Take a look at everything you need to know about why having a positive body image goes a long way -


What Is a Body Image?


Body image is a perception, a way of thinking and feeling about yourself. Body image is a mental representation of your physical self and how you look at your body. It is a combination of your personal thoughts, beliefs and external influences that lower or increase your self-esteem and self-worth.

Positive or Negative Body Image - What Does Your Mirror Reflect?

A positive image is one that involves the acceptance and celebration of yourself. It embraces the holistic self, irrespective of apparent flaws. You may feel self-conscious about your freckles, your curly hair or the color of your skin. Cultivating a positive body image is all about accepting each part of your body, at whatever size, build or shape you are and however big or small your facial features look to you. It also means trying to be your best possible self, and there is nothing wrong with making healthy food choices, using makeup to enhance features rather than conceal them, and remaining fit through exercising to achieve a healthy and robust body.

Conversely, having a negative body image entails being dissatisfied with your body. This means living a life of despair and helplessness as you struggle to achieve a stereotypical or perfect body weight or shape. A person with a negative body image may see a distorted version of him or herself in the mirror picturing oneself as too fat, too thin, having too many blemishes or unattractive. This begins an endless pursuit of the ideal self that may lead you to develop unhealthy eating patterns, mental stress, and undergoing cosmetic surgery to conceal apparent flaws and ultimately feeling discontented despite being healthy and attractive.


What Affects Positive Body Image?


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Positive body image is affected by many factors. You perceive your body in a certain way because of social and personal opinions all around you. Read on to know more about the mixture of elements that construct your body image -

  • Feelings

Your feelings determine whether you appreciate your body or feel critical of it. When you look at a supermodel on television or the runway, you may start feeling upset about your body size and shape. Conversely, a person with a positive body image feels content with his or her body image irrespective of media and other opinions.

  • Beliefs

Your belief system and the one you have grown up with influence your body image. If you believe a certain weight or height is essential to constructing a positive model of your body, chances are you will not be satisfied unless you achieve those parameters or maybe even if you do. If your belief system is one that encourages you to be healthy irrespective of your body size, shape or height, you will feel satisfied with your appearance.

  • Social Influence

Social media and the surrounding people exert a considerable influence on what we feel and think. Parents, friends, television, social media, pop culture idols and magazines constantly barrage you with images and opinions about what body type, facial features or hair is the most attractive. If most social influences around you project a positive outlook towards body image, you are more likely to accept your body and strive towards a healthy and positive body image, rather than one that is most socially desirable.

  • Body Stereotypes

You may have grown up trying to fit into clothing that is too small or trying to achieve a certain size. This is because body stereotypes or popular perceptions sometimes distort the way you think and feel about your body image. Everyone has a different body type, and no one universal size or shape is ideal. However, trying to conform to stereotypical images of ideal bodies may leave you with a poor body image and low confidence.


How to Change Body Image?


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Positive body image is not developed in a day. It may take days or months or even years to build and maintain. However, changing your perception towards your body is possible and can change your life and help you achieve your goals. Here are a few tips on how to transform your body image from negative to positive –

  • Take up a hobby or exercise routine that makes you feel good about yourself
  • Empower yourself with positive body image statements such as ‘I love my thighs’ or ‘I love my skin tone’.
  • Keep away from negative influencers who take you away from your core positivity.
  • Motivate yourself and read about inspirational people who have changed their life by overcoming obstacles and negative beliefs.
  • Become your own best friend by consciously avoiding negative self-talk and boosting your self-confidence.
  • Move out of your comfort zone and indulge in activities such as swimming which push you to embrace your body type and develop self-assurance in any situation.

7 Reasons to Have Positive Body Image


There is more than one reason to have a positive body image:

Self-Satisfaction Leads to Happiness

A person who is satisfied with his or her appearance and body is happier in the long run. Achieving a certain body size or surgically altering your looks may make you feel happy for a while. However, it won’t be long before a negative body image will soon override your happiness and leave you with discontented feeling about your body or features. You need to change how you feel about yourself and your body on the inside before any physical alteration makes you feel satisfied. As you begin to look at yourself positively, you will feel satisfied no matter what your features look like, or what your body type or weight is.

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Mental Health Is Important

A negative body image can lead to a lot of mental distress. Constant psychological stress results and a negative self-image can trigger serious psychologic conditions such as anorexia or bulimia nervosa. Anxiety disorders and depression may also result from poor self-image, low confidence, and anxiety about one’s body size or shape. These can be prevented by striving to cultivate a positive body image that involves accepting one’s body with all its imperfections.

Positive Body Image Is the Key to Success

A person who views himself or herself with confidence and accepts his or her body is more likely to succeed than an individual who lacks self-belief. Self-confidence comes from having a positive body image and a desire to achieve success no matter what your body or face looks like. There are many examples of success stories in the media and around you which are fuelled by self-belief and positive body image which is the biggest asset you can have as you try to achieve success in life.

Inspire Yourself - and Others!

Appreciating your body and accepting others bodies as well will make you feel empowered. You do not have to look for inspiration anywhere else when you can be your own role model. Focus your time and energy on becoming the healthiest and happiest self you can be.

Uncover the Real You

If you are constantly worrying about that pimple on your face or the fat on your arms, you do not have the time to think about who you truly are. If you channel your thoughts to developing an awesome personality and learning skills to starting a career, you can really understand what your best qualities are and concentrate on the ways to improve yourself holistically, rather than only focusing on your looks. And who knows you may grow to love the ‘real’ you!

Save Yourself from the Vicious Cycle of Negativity

A negative thought system breeds and spreads negativity all around. As you start viewing yourself negatively, your thoughts escalate and take you to a darker space than you were in earlier. Negativity tends to spiral out of control, and before you know it, you will find it difficult to return to a happy and positive outlook about yourself.

Your Life Is Precious

Many people, especially women, spend decades fretting about their appearance. As a result, the best years of their lives fly by in the blink of an eye. You may find yourself missing out on opportunities to enjoy life or enhance your career merely because you lack in self-confidence stemming from a negative body image. Don’t waste your precious time by finding imperfections in your body, instead learn to love each part of your body and celebrate life each day, every day.


Conclusion


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You are the best person to believe in yourself. Each aspect of your personality and body is valuable and serves a purpose. Love yourself, love life and constantly strive towards developing and retaining a positive body image. Flip that body image coin and find a side of yourself that you’ve never seen before - a healthy and happy person who loves his or her body no matter what!

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