I'm fat. I'm too skinny. I'd be happy if I were taller, shorter, had curly hair, straight hair, a smaller nose, longer legs.
Does any of this sound familiar? Are you used to putting yourself down? If so, you're not alone. Lots of people have issues with their body which can affect their self-esteem. Self-esteem is all about how much people value themselves and is important because feeling good about yourself can affect how you act, control your behavior and how much you enjoy life!
So let’s dive right in. What is Body Image?
Body image involves our perception, imagination, emotions, and physical sensations of and about our bodies. It s ever changing; sensitive to mood, environment, and physical experience. It’s not based on fact. It’s psychological and influenced by how others judge us. To put it bluntly, it’s learned.
So when did we begin to measure our self worth by numbers on a scale? How did we fall prey to the idea that beauty is external and success is measured by factors that have little to do with personal strength and spirit? We must be aware of how the images we see affect us. The impact some images have on women is profound.
At times, I admit the media and magazines can send powerful messages to girls and women about the acceptability or unacceptability of their bodies. Sometimes making us feel inadequate and negative about our bodies. It’s important to realize that only 4% of women genetically have, what we consider the "ideal" body. So a lot of women AND men feel they must go to extreme measures to reach this image of perfection. I’m sure we all know pictures can be airbrushed and enhanced, but we forget! This is why today, cosmetic surgery is the fastest growing 'medical' specialty. A nip here, a tuck there, an injection here, and more than enough implants everywhere. But how far is too far? I’m so not a fan of the daffy duck look and sadly, some girls are starting so young too. You can’t help but wonder where all the stuff injected goes when you get older and how does it look? Quite scary to be honest! Surgery is scary. I myself practically grew up in the hospital with all the corrective surgeries I HAD to have because of my cleft lip and palate. I can tell you that it wasn’t fun. So why would anyone purposefully put themselves through surgery unnecessarily?!! Now don’t get me wrong, there are some celebs that I know have had minor things done that have absolutely enhanced! So, I’m not against it…
Here are some tips we can all use to work towards a healthy body image & befriend your body:
1. Post an affirmation on your mirror that your body is perfect just the way it is.
2. Emphasize your assets. You’ve got lots. Give yourself credit for positive qualities. If there are some things you want to change, remember self-discovery is a lifelong process.
3. Exercise! It makes us feel better about our appearance, and improves our health and mood
4. Create a list of people you admire who have contributed to your life, your community, or the world. Was their appearance important to their success and accomplishments?
5. Don't let your size keep you from doing things you enjoy. Like dancing;)
6. Ditch the diet. Just be conscious of what you put in your temple. It’s yours isn’t it? So treat it like you favorite pair of shoes or handbag. With LOVE!
7. Let your inner beauty and individuality shine.
8. Be your body's ally, not its enemy.
While there are many aspects of our bodies we cannot change, you can change your beliefs which influence the way you feel about yourself. It’s internal and it starts with self-respect and a positive attitude. It’s important to focus on health and not size. Beauty is not just skin-deep. It is a reflection of your whole self. Love and enjoy the person inside!
Having a negative body image can be obsessive and also lead to depression or worse, an eating disorder. It’s time that women stop judging their bodies harshly and learn to appreciate their inner being, soul, and spirit. A women's body is a masterpiece! We can create and sustain life! It is truly a miracle. Funny, that at this moment I am experiencing an interesting journey with my body as I am pregnant. Yes, pregnant and getting bigger everyday… Talk about surrendering! As a dancer, I’ve always had a direct relationship with my body. Knowing exactly what’s going on and making sure I stayed healthy and fit. My image was not only a job but a lifestyle. I definitely have a newfound respect for motherhood!! It’s quite amazing. All the work I’ve done is now being tested to the fullest. Breathing, meditation and not being reactive when I’m not perfectly comfortable. Everything made me irritable at first. I kept making my body wrong. I wasn’t accepting the changes. But changes are growth and I’m fully clear on why there are 9 months to this process! Baby rules and all you can do is trust that your body knows what to do. There is an adjustment with each day, knowing you are that much closer to the blessing you are baking inside! So here I am, about to embark on a whole new chapter of body image. Venturing into the unknown and selflessness. More than ever, I am inspired to take care of myself in order to take care of this new precious gift I was given. A responsibility of a lifetime! So, here is what I’ve learned…
Wherever we go, whatever we do we need to remember we are important individuals and have a purpose. I will remember to hold my head up high with confidence, look people straight in the eye, and be the best person I can be. Complement them on their uniqueness and support them when they feel down.
Let’s start making the shift together. I promise you’ll feel GREAT!
Carmit and her fiancé Kevin are expecting a baby girl in September.
Some of my fave makeup tips;
If you’re feeling tired, apply a rosy pink blush on your cheeks, highlighter on your lids, mascara and gloss. It’ll give you a soft boost!
Always use a primer or moisturizer before applying makeup so you don’t end up blotchy or flakey.
Know when is enough. Don’t distract from your natural beauty. Too much makeup can be scary up close and personal.
Write or send questions to me at Carmit@faceonmagazine.com/uk
( Can this be an email?)