Right now, every article, newsletter and ad is pushing a “New Year, New You” mentality. From gym memberships, to-do lists, habit formation and life changing results in 8 perfectly structured modules, the New You is going to be busy!
I don’t know about you but this agenda is tiring and untrue. Sometimes it’s all we can do to just take care of ourselves!
Body shaming is known as the action or practice of expressing humiliation towards another’s body shape or size; it can take on the form of bullying. Body shaming is done by parents, siblings, friends, enemies and is often portrayed in the media. “Why is she wearing that?” That’s not flattering at all.” Or, “I’m so ugly compared to him or her, I’ll never find anyone who wants to date me” are common thoughts and phrases that are used as examples of body shaming.
No matter how it manifests, it usually results in shame, unworthiness and perpetuates the idea that people should be judged for their physical appearance.
The stigma surrounding weight and body type can have lasting effects on one’s mental health (especially when starting in adolescence). Several issues arise from body shaming including: low self-esteem, depression, anxiety.
When body shamed, it can lead to feelings of low self esteem and avoidance for the humiliation felt. Worse, it can make a person feel anxious, worthless and isolated-which can lead to depression.
Negative comments can drive young people to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as: cutting, binging, purging, or may even lead to diagnosable eating disorders.
#1: Think about a time that you experienced a shift in your relationship with your body. What caused this shift? Did it last?
#2: If this body part could talk to you, what would it say?
#3: Can I acknowledge that I have imperfections without saying I’m imperfect and no good?
#4: What’s one way I can celebrate my body every day?
#5: What do I need to feel nourished, energized and strong?
Which question above, if any, resonates with you?
If you want to make a change in your life, whether it is large or small, it is important to remember that progress takes time. While it can be tempting to give up when we don’t see results immediately, trust that the process will work if you stick with it-one day at a time.
When setting goals, the stories you tell yourself are also important. Tune out the noise of what you THINK you should look like and begin developing a positive relationship with your body.
And most importantly, you don’t have to go through this alone! If you’re ready to move through this, then a counselor in Richmond, Va can help you in person and via online therapy.
To get started at Life Cycles Counseling, follow these simple steps: