No More Body Shaming: 5 Ways to Love Yourself and Others

Do you ever look in the mirror and focus on the parts of your body you hate? Or flip through the pages of a magazine and judge celebrities who look like they’ve let themselves go? If so, you’ve taken part in the incredibly negative act of body shaming. And it’s doing a lot of harm.

Body shaming is any time you talk or think negatively about your body or someone else’s. And it seems to be happening more and more these days. For example, a fitness video creator named Cassey Ho recently posted a photo on Instagram that led to numerous mean comments about her appearance like “You shouldn’t give advice when you’re so fat,” and “Tone up the belly fat and love handles.”

While it’s obvious that saying mean things about someone’s body is hurtful to them, it’s just as harmful to say those things to yourself. Focusing on your physical flaws hurts your self-esteem (how could it not?). Plus, those who think negatively become less outgoing and have smaller social networks compared to people who are positive about themselves. Ready to rid the world of body shaming? Here are five ways to start:

  1. Stop negative self-talk. First things first: Cut the negative comments when looking at yourself in the mirror. The more you tell yourself that you have wimpy arms or that your belly is too big, the worse you’re going to feel. Be aware of your thoughts and if you say something you wouldn’t say out loud to your best friend, stop. Instead, focus on something you do like, like your great smile or haircut.
  2. Make your body feel good. One of best ways to stop body shaming is to start admiring everything your body can do for you, like powering you through a quick run, yoga class or walk with your dog. Do something that makes you feel strong and happy, then afterwards, make sure to thank your body.
  3. Look at women around you. Most people around you probably don’t have that supermodel figure you see in the magazines, but they’re still beautiful in their own ways. Don’t forget that you are, too!
  4. Quit judging other body types. The world is full of all shapes and sizes and often people can’t control the body style they were born with. No matter what kinds of bodies you see in the mall or at the gym, try not to judge them, even in your own head. By allowing everyone to be themselves, you’ll become more comfortable with your own flaws as well.
  5. Make a list of things you love about yourself. Jot down some of your favorite features to look back on when you’re feeling down – and don’t just focus on physical things. Also include your great sense of humor, amazing children and skill at making scrambled eggs.

For more ways to feel good about yourself, check out these blogs:

 

 

Photo credit: thephotographymuse

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