Learn to Love Your Body

Whether it is from watching the latest Matthew McConaughey flick or from flipping through a Victoria’s Secret catalogue both men and women struggle with body image issues. Being unhappy with your body can have a huge impact on your self-esteem, which affects various areas of your life. Here are a few tips that will help you develop a healthier body image.

Buy Clothes that Fit You

I am guilty as charged of buying something I love that doesn’t quite fit, but I tell myself it will soon. If you have a closet full of beautiful clothes that you don’t feel comfortable wearing you are not only wasting money, you are discouraged and disappointed every time you try something on. This can lead to a damaging shame spiral that will only discourage you from your goals. Instead of buying clothes with aspirations of loosing weight, buy clothes you feel great in now and reward yourself with new clothes when you do loose weight.

Avoid the Scale

Nobody likes being defined as just a number because we are unique individuals who are so much more than that. So why do we let the number on the scale define how we feel about our bodies? If you become a slave to your scale you are bound to get frustrated and maybe even discouraged from reaching your goals. You should also avoid the scale is because it is often misleading. At any given time in the day your scale can read up to 5 pounds more because of your clothing and what you have ate and drank that day. Another fact to remember when weighing yourself is that muscle weighs more than fat. So if you are actively exercising you may actually see the number on the scale rise as you burn fat and build muscle.

Do Your Research

Learning to love your body is a long and difficult process because the media constantly bombards us with the “ideal body image.” You will love your body more if you do your research and find out that the ideal body isn’t even real! Photographers can do amazing things with airbrushing and not even supermodels look like supermodels in real life. Instead of comparing yourself with fake images, do research on what is a healthy weight and size for you based on your height, gender, and age.

Focus on What You Love

Shifting your focus from negative to positive will make a world of difference. Think about the parts of your body you love and why. I love that I have strong legs because they help me backpack and climb. Ultimately you should focus on the things you love about yourself as a person. Your body is just a piece of you and when you learn to love your whole self you will love your body more too.

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Sarah Reich is a youth mentor, entrepreneur and leader. Her primary focus is on positive psychology and the application of its principles. She is currently working as a writer for goalzila.com, a personal development site with a focus on motivation, personal development and personal productivity.

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