What do you see in the Mirror? My legs are too big. My rear is saggy. My stomach has a pooch. I have cankles. I have thunder thighs. My arms flap in the wind. Sound familiar? Are you guilty of claiming any of these? Have these exact words come out of your mouth? We women are all guilty of seeing ourselves differently than others do. We are the worst critics.
We are all guilty of spending more time disliking our bodies than appreciating our assets 80 percent of women are dissatisfied with their appearance. This carries over to our children ,unless we teach them differently. How do you do that? When you look in the mirror and ask your daughter, do I look fat? Or talk about the latest diet.. or spend money getting surgeries to “fix” ourselves .
I just saw the news about the book “The Vogue Factor” and MODELS EATING TISSUES TO STAY SKINNY!
Growing up in Georgia, my dream was to become a professional dancer. During the training that I had to entail, I had a teacher tell me ”the more BONES I can see, the more you will be noticed on stage…THAT is elegant.” So, I starved myself for a short time and thought that would make me better, prettier and more noticeable on stage. I soon learned, that was NOT the case... but my body image was distorted through my first two years of college. After I added an additional major of physical fitness and health, I soon realized what things were good and bad for your body, and that most “dancers’ were closet bulimics. How sad. But, THIS GIRL likes her food, liked to keep it down and deep down I liked myself so that was a good thing! Fast forward 30 years later, obtaining every fitness certification I could master and seminar that I could attend, I hope to help women really SEE themselves in the mirror.
I continue to strive to teach women how to be healthy inside and out, that they can be healthy and don’t have to “diet”, starve, kill themselves exercising but start at slow pace and find something they ENJOY doing.
I remember when my daughter was growing up. I never once mentioned “diets"; I spoke of healthy eating to give us energy. I never asked, “Do I look fat in these jeans?” I DID tell her how smart, amazing and beautiful she was when she had her t shirt, jeans and no make up on heading out for school. When she had zero make up on, with her hair in a bun, glasses and retainer in her mouth. Because she was then and still is so beautiful on the inside and out. I know she will be the same for her daughter if she has one. She has an amazing outlook about herself and I hope that I fostered that. She did have several friends whose moms constantly questioned their own looks and I saw the insecurity in those girls, from that role model.
I challenge young moms to become a positive role model for your daughters. What I see from being a mom is that you have a great chance to be a good role model of doing the same type of things, (well you don’t have to do the no makeup, hair in bun, retainer in your mouth) but maybe not freak out having to put your make up on if running to the grocery store for some milk. Maybe look in the mirror and let her see you say, “wow I FEEL great today!”. That 10 lbs does NOT make you "less than" or anything of the sort. Honestly, most of the women I meet that are the MOST amazing don't "diet" but live life to the fullest!!
Needs some tips? MedicineNet.com experts suggest the following steps to improve your self-image.
1. Stop negative self-talk immediately. While you still may not like what you see in the mirror, Martz says, learning to describe yourself with neutral, objective phrases can help stop the cycle of poor self-esteem. So, instead of saying to yourself "I have really ugly thighs," think "My thighs could use some work."
2. Find and focus on the things you like about your looks. It's best not to link your looks to your self-esteem, but with body image so intimately entwined with self-image, that can be hard to do. The next best thing is to find something about your image you really like. "It can be great hair, great nails, terrific teeth. Find the things about yourself you can say something good about, and every time you look in the mirror, go there first and say something positive to yourself," says Martz.
3. Treat yourself with the same kindness and respect you show your best friend. "Would you respect and care about a person who says about you what you are saying about yourself? If the answer is no, then begin treating yourself at least as well as you are treating others in your life," says May.
4. Say what you mean. Sometimes, hating your thighs is all about wanting thinner thighs. But sometimes, Kaufman says, negative body thoughts are a way of expressing discontent over other issues in your life. Learn to decode these messages, she says.
5. Dress the part. If you're putting off buying new clothes until you like your body better -- don't. Whether you're bursting at the seams in duds that are too tight or swimming in over-sized clothing to hide your body, you are eroding your self-esteem. "Buy what fits you, and look the very best you can. It sends a powerful message to yourself that you are worth it," says Aronowitz.
6. Recognize that people naturally come in different shapes and sizes, and cherish your body's uniqueness. And, Martz says, remember this: "Only 2% of the world's women fall into the supermodel category. That leaves a lot of room for the rest of us! To the 98% of us real women, I will go with what my Daddy always said. ."Pretty is as pretty does" and LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST! Know it's OK to have a glass of wine, to eat a burger every now and then and LOVE yourself!