The pressure for both men and women to look a certain way in today’s society is real. Social media has not only perpetuated this stigma but magnified it. Consequently, many people struggle with accepting how they look and feeling good about themselves. Some things can help overcome living with a negative body image.

Take a Respite from Social Media

Whether for a short-term or a more long-term break, removing all social media from a daily routine is crucial to developing a more positive body image. Most platforms promote people who have a specific body type instead of realistically presenting all kinds of people. This false imaging can give anyone a false perception of how they should look, what they should wear, and what size makes them appear attractive. Studies have shown that more people are now getting cosmetic surgery of every kind to look like what social media often portrays as “the norm.”

Find other ways beyond social media to stay in touch with friends and keep up with the latest news through sites that are strictly news platforms and only private messaging friends. Then, beauty can be re-defined.

Assess Relationships

Take note of any parts of social, professional, and intimate relationships that promote a negative body image and remove them from your life. This step is probably the hardest thing to do since it could mean telling long-standing friends or relationships goodbye. Keep in mind that if they contributed to having a negative body image, the friendship was a toxic one. Changing a work environment can also be a daunting task, but if people at work make it nearly impossible to feel good about yourself, finding a workplace that is non-judgmental about how a person appears is imperative to developing a positive body image.

Consult with Professionals

Begin a program that incorporates mental as well as physical health within the scope of a specific timeline. Find a professional counselor to discuss anxiety, stress, and emotional trauma associated with long-standing negative body image feelings. Talk to a physician about meeting with a nutritionist and developing a diet and exercise regimen that is realistic and suits your timeline and goals. All of this will create a light at the end of the negative body image tunnel where the other side results in a healthier outlook on body image.

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