Do you often find yourself looking at yourself in front of a mirror and constantly compare your appearance to someone you know on social media? You might think it’s a normal thing to do – craving for what you perceived to be. Because I also have trouble with that situation. I sometimes wish a certain part of my body or my appearance can be like the models I always watch and follow on social media, especially their perfectly toned bodies and the alluring charm of their faces. However, for some reason, I realized that appreciating myself more than others remains necessary. The way I look in the mirror now is different from when I was fifteen.
Dealing with positive and negative body image issues
Nevertheless, body image issues constantly arise during adolescence. During that stage, an opinion about yourself forms and sees oneself appearance. Do I look good? Does my body shape look good? Does my skin compliment me well enough? That’s body image. There are two types of body image – positive and negative. Body image refers to how you look at yourself. In other words, what do you believe about your appearance, how do you feel about your body, height weight, and shape. It can range from a positive outlook (satisfaction) to a negative outlook (dissatisfaction).
Body Image: Positive and Negative
A person who feels satisfied with his or her body image tends to accept and appreciate their whole body including how it looks and what it can do. A person also has inner positivity, has a broad concept of beauty, and a stable body image. However, if a person always compares themselves with others, doesn’t have confidence, and always feels ashamed and embarrassed. Certainly, it will lead to negative body image.
Cause of negative body image
To tell you honestly, the cause of negative images doesn’t come from isolation. Hence, it comes to culture, media, family, and friends that convey what’s acceptable and beautiful. You know people have an influence on each other, sometimes we tend to be persuaded of what pertains as beautiful without being critical of it. Social media platforms became one reason why people tend to be like someone. The beauty trend that always implied by a famous person and those who set unrealistic beauty standards.
Moreover, families and friends can influence a person’s body image. They tend to encourage people even at a young age of what is acceptable and beautiful. Not just that, the fashion industry also contributes to the unhealthy example of employing underweight models for product promotion. Additionally, discrimination to one’s race, size, ability, gender orientation, and age also contributes to the influence.
These are just some factors that are evident nowadays. A negative body image could also lead to low self-esteem. These might also lead to certain wrong behavior when a person doesn’t meet the status quo.
Dealing with body image issue and how to improve it
To improve the body image issue one should practice the following suggestion.
- Be critical of what media always imply to its audience.
- Start positive self-talk and do not compare yourself to others.
- Wear whatever clothes you are comfortable with and style them perfectly in your own choice.
- See yourself as a whole person, not the negative one.
- Aim for a healthy lifestyle, Yes! you can do it.
- Praise and shower yourself with positive words. It really helps me a lot!
- Appreciate your well-being, start to focus on what you can do.
- Treat yourself in your own little ways.
- Try to start a hobby, maybe you want to do some hiking, learn to play an instrument or do whatever you please to do.
- REMEMBER: Physical appearance says little about someone’s character or value as an individual.
Being beautiful still depends on how a person defines beauty and the standards he or she sets to meet the definition. And, it’s a big mistake to base beauty on someone else’s standard. If all of us adhere to a given standard then everybody will just look the same which is unrealistic.
Maedelyn is a journalism student from Cavite State University. She is a passionate girl whose dream is to travel the world and write stories about it. She likes photography and is interested in fashion. She also likes to watch classic movies.