I reposted an article on Facebook about moms putting on their swimsuits and getting out with their kids. Instead of hiding in the back ground ashamed of a body they aren’t super happy with.
There are some days when that is easier than others. Sometimes the negative self talk can really mess with you and keep you from interacting or participating in life.
We can place part of the blame for body shaming on the media: “It’s not enough to be skinny anymore — now you need to have visible ab muscles, super-toned yoga shoulders, a skinny waist and other social media-manifested benchmarks such as the ‘thigh gap,’” says Chicago-based body-image expert Leslie Goldman.
Here are 6 ways to acknowledge the self-talk, work through it, and get past it.
1. Focus on the tangible.
Thoughts are just that, thoughts. Sometimes our perception of ourselves hazes reality. When you find that your are hating on yourself, stop, and focus on what you ‘can do’ rather than what you ‘are.’
I know a common phrase in my vocabulary is ‘I’m a hot mess!’ Sometimes is jokingly, but others that’s exactly what I feel like I am. So, in that situation, take a moment and concentrating on being strong 💪 or what I have accomplished that day ✅ can change the mindset and reminding me of what I can do!
Chances are the things you can do have nothing to do with your dress size. 😉
2. Put Thoughts in Their Place
It isn’t easy, but it’s helpful to reframe the concept of thoughts, which takes away some of their power to make us feel bad about ourselves, says Holly Parker, Ph.D., a psychotherapist at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, Massachusetts, Harvard University lecturer and author of When Reality Bites: How Denial Helps and What to Do When It Hurts.
To help people reframe how they view the thoughts that enter their minds, Parker suggests visualizing that you’re walking through a grocery store and looking at all the products. “Do you buy everything? No,” she says. “You might pull something off a shelf, look at it and then put it back. Try thinking about thoughts in same way.” Not all thoughts are relevant or worth your attention, practice paying closer attention to your inner dialogue and decide what is truly relevant for you.
3. Separate ‘Thought’ from ‘Judgement’
Most of us are wired to accept our negative thoughts without question but scrutinize and doubt positive ones, Parker says. So when you look in the mirror and think, “I’m gross,” it can feel like you’re stating a fact, but you’re not. Being mindful helps you realize you’re making a judgment, not stating a reality.
4. Don’t Ignore the Negaive Self-Talk
If someone feels sad and another person tells him or her to stop being so negative, Parker continues, “It’s invalidating and can make you feel worse and unheard.” Rather than trying to silence that negative voice, acknowledge that the thought came up, she says. “Changing how [people] talk to themselves is about promoting more accuracy and self-compassion, because negative labels or statements can feel like facts when they’re not.”
5. Stop Comparing Yourself
I know what I just said about acknowledging negative self-talk, but you need to stop lamenting, “Why don’t I look like Beyonce/Taylor Swift/(insert celebrity here)?”
For one thing, celebs, Instagram influencers, and even your Facebook friends who post “thinspiration” selfies on the reg, have learned how to position themselves in photos just right, so you’re seeing them at their absolute best. Factor in Photoshop, filters and editing, and you’ve got a recipe for body envy.
Every person is on their own body journey, you are not them, so your journey does not and will never look like their’s. So comparission is asinine, it’s 🍎 to 🍊
6. Be a Friend to Yourself.
We tolerate talk from ourselves that we would never tolerate from another person. Think of it this way, the comments you make to yourself, would you look another person in the eye and say it to them?! Would you call your grandmother a ‘fat pig’ for eating an extra slice of pizza? I wouldn’t (my grandma would whip me with whatever hard object was in reach 😉)
It isn’t easy to retrain the brain to be compassionate and reasonable after a lifelong barrage of media and social pressure about how we look. But, everyday practice will help you become, and remain, aware of how you treat yourself on a daily basis.
If you are working on fitness and/or nutrition goals recognize your progress, even the little wins, each day. Find an accountability partner or group that can help you stay motivated on the days when your self-critiques are la little harsher than they should be.
See you on the other side!!