The world today seems to be a constant rat race for fame and attention-grabbing social media. We want people to view us. We want followers, likes and comments. And we compare popularity by the number of interactions they get. You will often hear a conversation that contains the phrase “she got like, 10,000 likes on that photo”. This then sets the ‘amazing-bar’ at 10,000. Meaning if you were to post something and it got say, 500 likes, which is more realistic given the smaller social circle you dwell in, you are only 5% as great as the person you desire to emulate.
The larger, and more serious problem, however, is not the fact that we are fed these images to. Of greater concern is that a large portion of these are image based. It will be a photo in a new dress, bikini, a muscle shot at the gym or buying a fancy new hat at an airport. These leave a social snail trail of physical attraction for millions to slip up on. The less likes you get – the less attractive you are.
We all have parts of ourselves that we would like to change, alter or enhance – this is just part of the way we think. However, we tend not to look at these through the appropriate lens. Rather than look at bettering ourselves, we see it as taking us one step closer to being ‘as beautiful’ as so-and-so that we follow online or know at school or the office. We are caught in the comparison game and it is a scary territory filled with a lot of emotional landmines.
Physical ‘imperfections’ can create the deepest and most painful mental distress. The “I don’t like that about myself” becomes “I am not good enough” and “No one will love me”. These are much harder states to overcome. These lead to depression and can lead to self-harm and in worse cases, suicide.
And so, it is crucial that you begin to train your mind to think positively about your body and how you look. You need to start to ‘Think Pretty’. This is not to say that you must pretend to like every part or that you are OK with something you are not OK with. Just don’t look at what someone else has and think you have something wrong with yourself for lacking that.
Don’t decide your body changes based on someone else’s standards. Look at yourself and think about a better version of you – according to your own standards. If you would like to lose weight, lose weight. If you want to have blonde hair, because you like it, then do it. It is vital for your mental health, that you are physically happy. No one is perfect – and the ones that seem so, are fake.
It is so important that you become more comfortable in your body. If you are happy – then what others they think won’t matter in any case. Like Dr. Suess once said: “be who you are, because those who matter don’t mind, and those who mind, don’t matter”.
If you are struggling with positive body image – or just feeling a little bit down at the moment, here are some actionable steps you can take to THINK pretty.
1) Write down 6 things you DO like about yourself – 3 physical and 3 non-physical!
2) Decide on one small change you can make, that will make you happy (new hairstyle, wearing a new color or getting teeth whitening system)
3) Think more carefully about your clothing choices – avoid too many dark colors. Go less gothic and try dark pants with a bright top. Or a yellow or red scarf instead of grey.
4) Make a promise to be more positive about yourself and start to recognize when you think negatively
5) Listen more carefully to the people around you. The overly critical friends need to go – the highly opinionated family, need to be spoken too.
You are the best you that there is.
For further discussion on the topic or to get life coaching within this area of your life, reach out to me. It is very easy to ‘unlock your best self’ through coaching. The main thing is that starting today, you look at yourself in a more positive way.