Body shaming and anxiety—they’re not exactly terms that give you a warm fuzzy feeling. Unfortunately, they’re two words that are more common than ever. With the rise of social media, the internet and social pressures becoming more and more extreme body shaming and anxiety seem to be continuing to grow. While it’s difficult to ignore the constant pressure of body shaming and anxiety in our daily lives, there are more and more public figures that are using their platforms to help bring awareness to these issues. It’s not just about those with a celebrity platform that can stop these things from continuing to affect us, though. It’s time to say no to body shaming and anxiety! We’ve found a few ways to help you say no to these things…
Pay Attention to Your Daily Thoughts
So often, we body shame ourselves and it can be something that manifests to bringing to others. It can be a vicious cycle of negativity, shaming, and anxiety. One of the first things to do, to help you on your journey of saying no to these habits is to start paying attention to the daily habits and thoughts you have towards yourself that are body shaming related. Take a couple days, even a week, to be as self-aware as possible in your thoughts. When you look in the mirror, pay attention to the thoughts you have about yourself and your body. Are they negative? As you go through your days, pay attention to statements you make regarding your body to in your mind and to others. Again, are they negative? Notice if you make adjustments to your body throughout the day like sucking in your stomach, pinching your body in places that you don’t love, etc. Getting really self-aware around your thoughts and habits about yourself is a great way to start to really see how you treat yourself.
Turn the Negative into Positive
It may sound obvious, but there’s a lot of power in turning negative thoughts into positive ones. Experts in mental health and body image continue to stress the importance of doing this. Once you’re aware of how often you have negative thoughts about yourself (or others), you can begin to switch those thoughts. It’s not always the easiest, or quickest, shift that occurs but starting the process is going to help shift your mindset in a positive way. Anytime you have a negative thought about yourself, your body, or even someone else stop yourself and take a moment to think something positive instead. Catching yourself is part of the process! You don’t have to necessarily tell yourself “I’m a supermodel” instead of a negative thought, but shift your thoughts to something realistic. Instead, shifting your thoughts to “I am strong, I am beautiful.”
All in all, we ALL need to give ourselves and others a break. No one is perfect, but that’s what makes us all unique and beautiful on our own. Try these steps to shift your mindset and start learning how to say no to body shaming and anxiety.