If you didn’t already know. It’s mental health awareness week. This year’s theme is all about body image. You can read more about the Mental Health Foundation here.
What is mental health?
Mental health has always been something that is really close to my heart as I face my own struggles and challenges alongside many of my friends and family. Mental health is defined as a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being. Did you know that one in four adults in the UK is likely to have a mental health problem at some stage in their lifetime, that’s what the experts say. That’s a lot of people. So not one of us should ever feel that we are alone or no one will understand, there will always be someone that will understand how you are feeling and maybe experiencing the same things.
My battle with negative body image
It is crazy to think that finally in 2019 the world is finally acknowledging that not everyone is a size, zero picture-perfect models. Magazines and companies are finally beginning to embrace our curves and imperfections. No longer do we have to flip through magazines to think we could never get away with their image because it’s being broadcast more and more to embrace yourself.
But let’s face it. It hasn’t always been this way! My school years were a prime example. I grew up with twisted hips which meant I walked differently to everyone else. I needed corrective surgery to set my legs straight, but now when I look back was the surgery more a cosmetic thing? So I could be the norm. Whatever that is?
Not just my legs, I’ve never been stick thin whether and I have always struggled to keep weight off. I get anxiety when I get dressed in the morning because I want to look perfect all the time. It’s so much pressure. Nothing ever feels just right.
Talking is so IMPORTANT.
It is so important that as individuals we talk to each other more than we are now. I am not gonna lie it is not always easy to open up, but it is so worth it. I often can’t bring myself to share my own negativity but one thing I do know, I am not the only one who hates her curves and wishes that I could have better skin. There’s always been so much judgement in this world. It is so easy to let negativity win and then we become depressed, lonely, and affected by the perfect image instead of embracing who we are and what we have. Anyone who tells you that they are 100% happy with their own body image, they are lying. There’s nothing wrong in trying to improve ourselves, buying new clothes and improving the way we look as long as it is you that is happy with yourself and that you are improving for no one other than yourself.
This is me, I am not perfect, I’m not skinny, I love to hide behind my make up. But it is me, and there is only one me.
What we can do to be more body positive?
Remember that not everybody is the same
It is time to stop comparing yourself to other people. Each and every one of us has our whether insecurities but it’s time to embrace yourself and learn to be unique in a positive manner.
acknowledge yourself and any low self-esteem you have
It’s not always easy and like I just said we are all different and we deal with things in different ways but this is such an important step in a journey to being body positive and learning your own self-worth.
Face your biggest critic. Yourself.
My dad has always had a famous quote to me, ‘you are your worst enemy’ and do you know what? he is right. It is
Realise how beautiful you really are
Write a list of positive things that you like about yourself and whenever you are feeling low, read your list and remember why you love yourself
It’s so important that we look after the most important person in your life. Yourself. There is one you and you need to take care of you. w
Set yourself reasonable targets
Don’t set yourself goals that you know you are not going to be able to stick too. If you set yourself unrealistic targets then you are allowing yourself opportunities to be negative.
I would love to hear your thoughts and feelings on body image and how this