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Body Image

How I Keep a Positive Mindset About My Body Image



Drawing of a girl with dark hair and green eyes wearing a white shirt next to butterflies
Long Island, NY

Being overweight, I worry about way more things than the average person. I can’t shop in a normal store to get clothes. Shopping is literally a nightmare. I even have to worry about sitting in desks at school and not being able to fit because of all the space that my body takes up.

I’m insecure about literally every part of my body. But I feel like my biggest insecurity is my double chin. I feel like if I didn’t have a double chin, the quality of my life would skyrocket.

Sure, plus-size models are bigger than other models, but as long as they have flat stomachs and no double chin, they’re considered just as beautiful. Most plus-size models aren’t even fat! They wear like a size 8 which is perfectly acceptable to society.

I think that the media portrays such a false sense of what is acceptable and what is not. The media tells us that our bodies aren’t our own in a way and I think that definitely resonates with a lot of people and correlates to their body image.

Even featured on shows like “Revenge Body,” all the people are trying to lose weight for someone else, to get back at someone, or to make someone want to be in a relationship with them. But you should only lose weight if it’s for yourself and your own health!

It’s messed up that the media makes people feel this way when none of us should have to.

I always see people posting pictures on social media where they have photoshopped or face tunned themselves to make themselves look better according to society’s standards. We really don’t have to do that, but the media keeps perpetuating an idea of what the perfect body is, and it’s making everyday people feel like we have to change ourselves to look similarly.

I think my sense of self and my body image deeply affect my emotions. I don’t really have a good self-body image, and that negatively affects my self-esteem and makes me depressed.

I’ve once had a false sense of positivity for a little while when I went on Weight Watchers and lost about 60 pounds and I thought I was looking good.

I started going on Tinder and getting a lot of matches and realized, maybe I don’t have to be skinny to find someone else that finds me attractive. But after I started getting that attention, I started to gain all the weight back.

I feel like a lot of my self-worth is what the media presents: “if you’re fat, you’re never going to end up with someone.”

My mom says that all the time, “if you look like this, nobody is going to want to be with you.”

But just finding out from firsthand experience, that what the media says isn’t necessarily true, it changed my perspective a little bit. Even though I still don’t think I have a positive body image.

I don’t feel like I’ve completely been able to positively cope with all my body image issues. I’m still dealing with that in therapy. I talk about my body image a lot with my therapist and I think it has been a really good coping method.

Just talking about it makes you realize you’re not alone in your thoughts and a lot of people feel the same way as you do. I think realizing that your body isn’t everything is so important. There’s so much more to life than the amount of space that you occupy.

Sometimes, I go out and think people are looking at me and thinking that I’m fat. But in reality, they probably aren’t even thinking about me at all.

I think we get into our own heads like that and get in our own way a lot. Once you realize you’re getting in that headspace, just take a second to breathe and be mindful of your thoughts.

Body image issues suck to deal with but at the same time, we’re still alive. There are people out there that are so big, they can’t even move because of their bodies. We should be thankful for all of our natural abilities.

If you aren’t satisfied, you are capable of changing your body. But you don’t have to change it for anyone else or conform to anything society tells us.

It’s all about self-fulfillment. Strive to be in a place where you are content with yourself and feel okay about who you are.

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Body Image

How I Strive to Become a Better Version of Myself




A girl standing and smiling in front of a blue wall wearing a white shirt and red headband.
Killingworth, CT

I’m most insecure about my stomach because every time I eat, I feel like it looks a lot bigger. It feels uncomfortable and looks weird to me, compared to the perfect bodies we see through the media, all day every day.

We are conditioned to believe that the standards we see in the media are what we should strive for in real life, no matter how unattainable they really are. This creates expectations that are extremely difficult to meet in people’s perspectives of themselves, but also in how they expect others to be or look like.

Social media makes us constantly compare ourselves to everyone. It makes us feel jealous and inferior to models that have perfectly thin bodies.

It starts to make us even feel worse about ourselves because of the way everyday people try to put out the best image of themselves as possible even if it’s fake like photoshopped or edited with an app.

Constantly seeing perfect people, living perfect lives, that people show off on social media, have an impact on the way people see themselves and others, and ultimately how they live their lives.

When my body is in better shape, I feel much more confident and my self-esteem is higher. But when I’m not in good shape, I feel a lot worse about myself.

When I make an effort to start eating better and working out regularly, I feel better not only physically, but mentally and emotionally in the way that I see myself. But during times where I’m not motivated about my health, I’m a lot more self-conscious and down on myself.

I wish I could just be light without having to worry about what I eat. At the end of the day, eating healthy and working out makes me feel better about myself, and it’s how I try to cope with my insecurities when I’m not feeling great about my body.

You should learn to love your body for your own self, and not because society stereotypically says you should.

You should not try to live your life trying to be someone you wish you could be, but rather strive to become a better version of your own self.

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Body Image

How I Improved My Perception of My Body




A girl with dark hair, wearing a blue jacket and white shirt, sitting down, smiling
Monroe, CT

I think high school was where everyone started having insecurities. High school is a very challenging place for most people, including myself. I was taller than most of the girls at school so it was already difficult for me to fit in.

Thinking about it now, I always perceived myself as bigger than the other girls when really I wasn’t. I used to have insecurities with my legs and stomach. I thought I was just on the chubby side, but I was really just taller.

I just had no idea what my body was doing to me at the time. I’d just tell myself that I would just start being healthy and watch what I eat. I ended up not eating at all.

That spiraled out of control to the point where I ended up being anorexic. It just got out of control for the most part.

While I was going through that, I still thought I was bigger than other girls. When people talk about body image issues, it is always perceived as being overweight or eating too much.

Anorexia is not being talked about when it comes to these types of issues and I think it should be. I did end up going to therapy for about two years and that helped a lot.

My therapist was also a nutritionist, so she showed me what healthy things to eat without starving myself. She showed me I could eat and that I did not have to starve myself.

She also taught me to take better care of myself such as working out and meditating. I needed that more than anything.

We aren’t meant to look alike. It doesn’t really matter what you look like, but it matters how you feel about yourself. Your perception of your body comes first.

When I was growing up, social media wasn’t as popular as it is now. I would say social media definitely plays a huge role when it comes to body image issues and insecurities in general.

Seeing all these Instagram models showing their perfect bodies really takes a toll on young peoples’ body images.

Whether I gain weight or lose weight, it is okay at the end of the day because that’s not what’s important in life. What’s important is how I am to reach happiness in life.

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Body Image

How My Body Image Is Shaped by My Positive Mindset




A young brunette girl wearing a dark long sleeved shirt smiling, while walking in nature.
New York

I think that body image has affected me emotionally. As we all know, the media portrays unrealistic bodies and women edited down until they aren’t really like real people. Young girls are affected and compare themselves to all those fake people. Even if they look at realistic photos as well, the fake ones stay in the back of their minds.I’ve%20done%20it%20too—looking%20in%20the%20mirror%20and%20pinpointing%20all%20of%20the%20things%20I%20hate%20about%20myself,%20but%20people%20say,” data-lasso-id=”837″>yourself of that as often as you can. I think we are taught to nitpick everything about ourselves because society tells us to.

Your friends affect your body body image because you think that if somebody else thinks it, it must be true.

To add on, I did research about this in my junior year of high school. I wrote a 12-page paper about the representation of women in the advertising world. The main thing causing such negative body image is how people are photoshopped to look unrealistic on social media. It’s an important issue and I think a lot needs to change to be where we should be in the future.

Instagram is a major part of the problem. Posting photos of yourself and photos portraying a life that isn’t necessarily real is causing others to compare themselves to you. It is this never-ending cycle of girls comparing themselves to each other. It’s a big issue.

Though there has been a lot of ignorance on the subject, I think people don’t realize that companies are going in the right direction. For example, the company called Aerie, stopped retouching their ads, though they still choose certain types of girls.

Even the company, Eileen Fisher, focuses on older women who are living their lives with success and are smart and powerful; I think that’s really nice to see.

Teach yourself every day to look in the mirror and say ‘this is what I love about my body’ rather than this is what I don’t like about it.’

My favorite part of my body is my arms, and I’ve always really liked having freckles. I used to have more of them and I actually miss them. My arms also have my freckles, so I think that’s why I like them.

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