Body image can be defined as the perception we have of ourselves physically.
This can be positive, where you accept yourself the way you are, flaws and all, or negative where you struggle to embrace what you see in the mirror.
When you’re struggling to be positive about your body, it will affect you in different ways.
And these days, more people are choosing extreme solutions like toxic diets and risky surgeries to change themselves into a more sexually appealing version of themselves which is very concerning.
One of the first steps in dealing with this issue is to be more aware of the things that could be triggering those negative thoughts about ourselves.
On this list are five major things that could be contributing to this problem:
1. Unhealed childhood issues
Those first years of our lives are probably the most important. This is when you learn new perspectives that shape how you see yourself and life in general.
Unfortunately, some people were harshly criticized for looking different even by family members during their childhood years. You might assume that as an adult you should have gotten over it but it’s not always easy.
If this is you, talk to someone or seek counselling so you can heal fully and accept that you were created beautifully.
2. Negative self-criticism
Being self-aware when it comes to your flaws is a healthy thing. This is different from being self-critical because criticizing yourself harshly is counterproductive.
When you’re being too harsh with yourself, you will notice that you often use words like “ugly” or “horrible” to describe your physical features, which is toxic. You have to recognize that you might be the one who is putting yourself down the most and you need to change that.
When you don’t take care of yourself, the effects will be seen. Years of poor dieting, drug use or excessive drinking can affect you and by the time you notice, years might have gone by and the damage done.
Here, you have to be honest with yourself and accept that you haven’t been taking care of your body. For you to be happy again, you need to get serious with your lifestyle habits and dieting choices.
4. Unhealthy comparison
One of the main reasons why many people struggle is because of unhealthy comparisons, especially on social media. Every day we see Photo-Shopped and altered versions of people and subconsciously, our minds start comparing those bodies to our own.
This kind of toxic comparison can severely damage how you feel about your looks. The reality is that a lot of what we see online is very filtered and in fact, most people on social media don’t look like that in real life.
5. Obsession with looks
Modern society has diluted everything down to looks. And if you’re not careful you will end up obsessing over your looks and sexual attraction when really, there is more to life than just looks.
If you decide to live your own life and not focus on looks all the time, you could free yourself from body image issues.