Body Image Breakdown

August 26, 2009


As we’ve mentioned before, we are two inquisitive chicks and we're always wondering "what" and "why". A few months back we asked our readers to provide insight to our most recent discussion about body image and weight loss. We got some GREAT feedback, so much so that it’s impossible to fit it all in one post. So, for the next few weeks, we’ll take each question and give our thoughts about the responses. Of course we encourage dialogue and hope you share your point of view about the questions asked.

Are you happy with your body weight?

9% Absolutely

54% I could use some work

36% Not at all

I honestly thought these numbers would look a little different. I do find some comfort in knowing that more than half of the respondents seem to be comfortable with their body, but not content (there’s a huge difference).

I recently read an article in Glamour magazine titled “What Everyone But You Sees About Your Body” . It totally rang true.

A while ago, someone told me that I may have body dysmorphia disorder. According to Wikipedia, body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), is “a psychological disorder in which the affected person is excessively concerned and preoccupied by a perceived defect in his or her physical appearance.”

My defect? My weight. As a kid, I was constantly teased about my height and my weight. It didn’t help that at my heaviest, I was wearing a woman’s size 24. (No one ever believes me when I say this) At one point in junior high, I simply would not eat. Soup and crackers for lunch and dinner was all I ate. But, as the “baby fat” came off, I’m now down to a size 2/4 (the smallest I’ve ever been), I still look in the mirror and see the “fat girl”. It’s only recently that I’m “okay” with my body, but if I were to be completely honest with myself, I think I have a good 10-15 pounds to lose and I monitor my eating habits very closely as to not revert back to my junior high eating habits.

The Glamour article reminded me of how much society has screwed up women’s self esteem. Women, including myself, are so obsessed with perfection, we’ll do anything to fit the body image mold instead of focusing on being healthy and our longevity.

The article insisted that women should stop bashing their bodies. How? Realize that...

  • Women are WAY too hard on themselves
  • Stop using negative language to describe your body. I know I’m not the only one that goes to a store and says “Yeah, I hope these jeans fit my big ol’ thighs”. Instead concentrate on finding something that fits you, not that you fit.
  • Focus on what you’re most proud of. I LOVE my collarbone. Weird I know, but try looking in the mirror and focus your eyes and your thoughts on what you like most the article suggests. “Do this once a day and you’ll be amazed at how your ‘flaws’ become a tiny portion of your beautiful whole.”
  • Don’t worry about what other people think about your body.
  • “You already have body confidence- you just have to tap into it” said Ellie Kriger, R.D., author of The Food you Crave. Each time you say something negative about your body, say something positive. For example, “I have big thighs, but they are strong and do what I need them to do.”
  • Remember that women have curves for a reason. We can create and carry life (Booyah boys!) “Embrace the changes our bodies undergo as a part of the natural order of things,”said a licensed midwife.

I agree with Glamour's assistant editor and blogger Margarita Bertsos, "Change your mind first and your body will follow." Hopefully these tips will make you feel more empowered to be nicer to yourself and your body!

Photo taken from Excerpts taken from Glamour magazine article "What Everyone But You Sees About Your Body".

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