In a world that is always technologically advancing, we hear a lot of talk about social media and magazine advertising impacting our self-image. Everywhere you look you can see edited photos of people; even on simple things such as magazine covers and makeup advertisements at the grocery store. Have we as a human race forgotten what it means to have physical imperfections? Are we truly this afraid of aging in our bodies and experiencing life naturally as we were born? How does this effect our self-esteem, especially our children who are now growing up relating their human bodies to nothing but edited photo shop images? When will we teach our children to love themselves as they are and not teach them to wonder what they should look like? These are many questions that many of us have, yet society’s answer appears to remain vainful. Here are three ways you can maintain having a positive self image.
1. Know That “Every Body” is Different
According to dosomething.org, 91% of woman in the U.S. are uncomfortable with their own bodies and attempt dieting to get the figure that they want. That is a insanely huge percentile. Only 5% of woman in the US actually have the body shape that is normally presented over mainstream media. Let’s not forget about the men; according to nationaleatingdisorders.org, young men are more effected by mainstream media than adolescent boys. I couldn’t find an exact percentile on what amount of men are uncomfortable with their own bodies, but everyone should remember that men are just as important and can feel insignificant about themselves too. Remind yourself daily that no body is alike, and that everyone is made up of many different shapes and sizes. There is no such thing as a “perfect body.”
2. Do Self-Affirmations Often
Okay, so we all know that it isn’t easy to always love what you see in the mirror. Spending two minutes in front of the mirror a day acknowledging to yourself that you are beautiful will not only help your self-esteem, it will boost your self-confidence. The reason is because you’ll acknowledge your body image with positive thoughts psychologically this way instead of filling yourself with negative ones.
3. Eff the Media’s Beauty Standards
Beauty means something different to everyone. A part of your body that you hate may be something that someone else in the world would love or find attractive. Our minds have been drilled with flawless images so much that we forget that no one looks as perfect as some women/men do in those public images. Embrace that mole on your face, realize that those stretch marks on your body are battle scars. It’s your body and you deserve to embrace every part of it.
-Rebecca Elizabeth, A Punk with MS