5 ways to improve your body image, because you deserve to feel good about yourself

  • 2 Minutes Read
Sue Heikkinen
Sue Heikkinen, MS, RDN, CDCES, BC-ADM, ACE-PT - Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist Educator

As you improve your body image through positivity, you can increase self-esteem and even empower yourself to make healthier choices. Learn how to love your body because you only have one!

Improve body image

Improve your body image as the first step to taking care of yourself

If you don't feel good about yourself, it can be harder to take steps to take care of your body. Practicing body positivity means you love yourself as you are. You also feel inspired to nourish yourself with good foods and move more because you want to take care of your body. After all, positive changes are more manageable when you feel good about yourself, not when you are down on yourself.

5 simple ways to improve body image and boost self-esteem

1. Practice gratitude for the incredible things your body can do

Your body does so much for you and deserves gratitude, not grilling. Reflect on how your lungs take in air and your heart beats to supply your body with nutrients. Appreciate that your legs get you where you want to go, your eyes allow you to see beautiful sunsets, and your arms can hug your loved ones.

2. List 5 things you like about yourself

Take a few minutes to write down five of your admirable qualities unrelated to appearance. After all, appearance or body size has nothing to do with what makes you remarkable. If this is hard to do, think about what a dear friend would say they appreciate about you.

Example:

You don't have to stop at five items. Instead, keep a running list of what makes you awesome! As the list grows, your body positivity grows.

3. Avoid comparing yourself to others

A recent study demonstrated that women who compared themselves to someone they considered to have a better body than their own rated their own body satisfaction as significantly lower than if they had not made this comparison.

Fitter, thinner, or wealthier people roam the globe. Comparing yourself to such people can quickly result in feeling worse about yourself. So remind yourself that they aren't necessarily healthier or happier. People come in various shapes and sizes, despite the misleading ideals advocated by the media.

4. Find enjoyable movement

The best incentive for moving your body is to become strong and healthy and feel good, not fit a particular ideal. A study examining exercise motivation found that people solely focused on exercising for aesthetics were less likely to stick with it. Finding a more profound inspiration, like self-care or how movement makes you feel, will help make physical activity a regular habit.

5. Be cautious with social media

If you feel negative about yourself after spending time on social media, you are not alone. Research shows an association between time spent on social media and poor body image and disordered eating.

Remind yourself that the images reflected on the screens do not reflect real life. You can count on models and ordinary selfies being posed, filtered, and heavily edited most of the time. The people often don't even resemble their online photos in real life! Unsubscribe from accounts that trigger negative body image.

Take these steps to improve body image, and reach out if you need help

Changing life-long thought patterns and developing self-esteem takes work, and you may need extra help. Consider working with a skilled counselor if you struggle with body image or eating disorders. You are worth it!

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Weight Loss->Behavior
Mar 2, 2022

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