Society has always created pressure for people to look a certain way. Now days, that is only magnified by our ability to edit and Photoshop everyone. If the world’s top models still have to go through hours of hair, makeup, and spray tans, just to have their pictures retouched, how is the average person supposed to feel confident? In this article I will touch on how I keep a positive body image in a world that strives for perfection.
As a teenager, I did not have a healthy body image. I really wasn’t even aware that there was such a thing. I just assumed the attractive people had confidence, and the not so attractive ones just had to try to deal. I definitely fell in the latter. Developing before anyone else, and having the bulkier frame of a 5′ gymnast, I had to try to dress my curves in juniors clothes that were made for only one body type: “skinny.” As a teenager in the mid 2000’s, hip hugging jeans and camis were the trend (trust me, the little attached bra in camis never worked for me.) By the time I hit 15, clothes shopping was far from normal and enjoyable. It involved a lot of tears and hatred towards myself, usually ending in me not even buying anything.
My junior year of high school, I started working out with a personal trainer and by the time I had graduated, had lost a substantial amount of weight. I thought that would cure my insecurities, especially since I could wear some more of the trendy styles. Yet I still wasn’t happy or confident. When I decided to pursue being an image consultant, I knew I needed to figure out the secret to a healthier outlook on body image; for my sake and my future clients’. Through going to school to get my certifications to be a consultant, I learned how to dress my body. I stopped picking out the most trendy styles, and began to wear the clothes that looked and felt amazing on me.
I stopped comparing myself to the women I saw in media. After learning all of the different body types, it suddenly didn’t make sense to be mad at myself for not looking like models and celebrities…I wasn’t shaped like them! For style inspiration, I looked at people that had similar body shapes to my own.
Lastly, I had to start focusing on the good parts of my body, instead of all the ones I hated. I would make myself name the positive parts of my appearance until after time, when I looked in the mirror, I didn’t even see all of my so called imperfections.
Sometimes now I will see an actress or another woman out in public and be tempted to compare. But now, I just brush it off because I feel confident in myself and how I look. I love my body not only for it’s appearance, but also for all it allows me to do!
Remember, the most importance part of a healthy body image is to realize how beautiful it is to be the best version of you.