Body positivity is the belief that every person’s body is worthy of respect and love, regardless of size, shape, or appearance. It is a mindset that rejects the narrow and unrealistic standards of beauty imposed by society and instead celebrates the unique qualities and diversity of the human body.
While body positivity may seem basic, it can be difficult to cultivate and maintain in a world that often reinforces negative body image. While a reputable plastic surgery clinic can help an individual alter their appearance, it’s important to do some internal work as well.
Here are some initial steps to cultivate body positivity and improve one’s relationship with the body.
How to Cultivate Body Positivity
One of the keys to body positivity is self-compassion. This means treating oneself with the same kindness, understanding, and empathy that would be extended to a friend. This means letting go of self-judgment and criticism and instead focusing on one’s strengths and positive qualities. When practicing self-compassion, it’s much easier to accept and love one’s body for what it is.
Unfollow negative influences
Social media can be a major source of body image anxiety, as it is filled with images of “perfect” bodies that are often Photoshopped and unrealistic. To cultivate body positivity, it’s important to unfollow accounts that help create negative emotions about the body and instead follow accounts that promote body positivity and acceptance. This is like creating a diet for the mind, feeding it with positive and uplifting messages about the beauty of the human body.
Social media can have a significant impact on mental health in general. So while it’s helpful to curate a positive feed of content that is empowering, simply limiting time spent on social media, in general, is advisable. Besides freeing up more time that can be allocated to meaningful work or relaxation, it levels the playing field for anyone to cultivate stronger body positivity.
Celebrate your body’s abilities
Another way to cultivate body positivity is to focus on the amazing things that one’s body can do. This means appreciating the body for its strength, flexibility, endurance, and other abilities rather than judging it based on its appearance. When celebrating the body’s abilities, one will be more likely to see it as an ally rather than an enemy.
Engage in self-care
Taking care of the body is an important aspect of body positivity. This means nourishing oneself with healthy food, staying hydrated, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep. It also means taking care of your mental and emotional health by practicing mindfulness, meditation, and other stress-reducing activities. By engaging in self-care, one will be more likely to feel good about their body and appreciate its unique qualities.
Wondering where to start? Popular (and free) self-care activities may include:
- Taking a bath
- Listening to music
- Going for a walk/hike
- Sitting in nature
Body positivity stems from the belief that every person’s body is worthy of respect and love. It can be difficult to cultivate in a society that often reinforces negative body image, but there are steps that one can take to improve a relationship with the body. These include practicing self-compassion, unfollowing negative influences, celebrating the body’s abilities, and engaging in self-care. By taking these steps, anyone can cultivate body positivity and improve their well-being.