“There is no wrong way to have a body.” – Glenn Marla
- Appreciate all that your body can do. Women are most familiar with their face and are therefore most likely to be accepting of this part, of their body. In this sense, you should also try to get used to the rest of your body. Look at yourself in the mirror and study the shape of your body and how it looks. If you can do this every day, you will be less likely to be shocked by the appearance of your real self and more understanding, knowledgeable and accepting of it.
- Keep a top-10 list of things you like about yourself—things that aren’t related to how much you weigh or what you look like. First, write down 10 things that you like about yourself without referring to your body or appearance in any way. Include things that you’re good at, or various ways you’re proud of yourself. Then, after this list is done, make another list of 10 things you like about your body and appearance. Depending on your level of self-loathing, this might be hard to do at first, but just do your best and add to the list later when you think of something else.
- Remind yourself that “true beauty” is not simply skin-deep. Beauty is a state of mind,not a state of your body. Feeling sorry for yourself is rarely productive, but it can be even worse when you get a group of your girlfriends together for a massive “woe is me” body bashing pity party. As much as women need to talk about their feelings and concerns,continually wallowing in self-pity can negatively affect your progress toward self-acceptance.
- Surround yourself with positive people and admire successful, not slender people. Ask yourself who your role models are in life. Do you look up to them because they have a pretty face, slender body and nice clothes, or rather because you respect their intelligence and who they are on the inside? Admiring successful people and surrounding yourself with these kinds of people can help shift your focus away from outer appearances. Look at what’s inside of a successful person that makes you admire them so much.
Another useful exercise is one which requires a little more effort, but is potentially impactful and rewarding; a one-week challenge:
- Keep track of how many times you hear someone talk about dieting or weight.
- If someone tries to draw you into a conversation about weight or dieting, change the topic or find an excuse to leave the conversation.
- Think about what you are saying to other people and keep focused. If you find yourself talking about weight or dieting change the topic.
- Tell other people about your personal challenge and encourage them to give it a go too.
- At the end of the week, tally up how many times you heard someone talking negatively about their body and how many times (if at all) you talked negatively about your own body.
- 6. Consider whether you feel better about your body after a week without negative body talk. You may like to take the challenge for a second week to see if you can improve your focus.