The constant exposure to media images of slender, young, beautiful people can make you feel inferior about your physical appearance. Yet the fact remains that regardless of how much or how little you deviate from these highly-idealized standards, your body is still your own and it deserves all the care in the world.
It’s not just you. Countless people all over the planet are struggling with negative body image issues, but if it helps to hear, YOU are not alone!
Nobody is perfect. Not even models who grace the covers of fashion magazines appear flawless in real life. But thanks to digital editing techniques like Photoshop, they don’t have to be. Just imagine what would happen if nobody edited those images? We’d spend countless hours comparing our physical flaws to society’s definition of “perfection.”
Luckily there are things that you can do to boost your self-esteem and shed the dysfunctional emotional baggage you’ve been dragging around. Here are a few tips on how to fix the things you don’t like and boost your self-esteem.
Dress According to Your Body Shape
The right outfit can make even the most ordinary person seem like a supermodel. But how can you find clothes that suit your body type?
If you’re pear-shaped, wear dark colors and high necklines to downplay your curves. If you’re apple-shaped, wear light colors and clothing with sweeter details like ruffles and bows to de-emphasize your tummy and highlight your bust line.
Meanwhile, if you’re rectangular, avoid anything too tight because it will only emphasize the length of your limbs. On the other hand, don’t go overboard with baggy shirts – they’ll add inches where none are welcome. And even if you do happen to be rectangular, it’s very possible that you also have an hourglass figure. That means wearing fitted tops and pencil skirts to emphasize your waist whereas flared pants will lengthen your silhouette.
There are now brands that cater to all body shapes and sizes. Berlei Electrify is an Australian brand that offers sports bras for all women.
Decide What Body Parts You Find Attractive
Do you find large breasts attractive? How about toned arms or shapely legs? Evaluate the physical features that you admire the most and work them into your daily routine. If there’s an activity you enjoy doing, do it often because chances are you’ll begin to appreciate the attributes associated with it. Maybe start by watching movies with actresses who have similar traits until they become part of your regular viewing habits. And if possible, don’t be shy about wearing clothing that flatters those parts of your body you like best – even if it means carrying a few fashion risks.
Change Your Views on Exercise
This isn’t just about working out until you drop.
It’s more important to choose an activity that you actually enjoy doing or at least have an interest in learning about or trying for the first time. There are tons of fun exercises you can try like surfing lessons, horse riding, and swimming.
For most people, exercise is a wonderful way to boost self-esteem since endorphins released by physical movement cause our bodies to release mood-enhancing chemicals.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
When we become envious of someone else’s body, we tend to feel inadequate about our own. And that affects our self-esteem and confidence.
Remember: Some people might be naturally slim while others only look thin due to an active lifestyle and good genetics. Likewise, you might have rock-hard abs, but they’re not as impressive if it means you don’t ever get enough to eat or can’t enjoy a cupcake from time to time!
It helps to unfollow social media influencers and celebrities. Instead, pay attention to the people in your real life who make you feel good about yourself.
Whenever you begin feeling insecure, try talking to someone whose beauty makes you forget all about your own insecurities. You’ll quickly feel better knowing that they like themselves just as much (or even more!) than you like them.
Prioritize Your Comfort
Beauty is more than skin deep. If you’re self-conscious about your appearance, take the time to experiment with outfits and accessories that make you feel good about yourself. Just because you happen to be pear-shaped doesn’t mean you can’t look fierce in a pair of high heels and a tight dress-you just need to choose the right ones!
Just don’t forget: Fashion should never result in discomfort or injury. Don’t wear uncomfortable shoes or clothes that are too tight. As long as you’re comfortable, it’s okay if other people don’t find you absolutely perfect too!
Letting go of perfectionism and learning how to accept yourself for who you are is the first step toward boosting your self-esteem.