What is body shaming and why do we find ourselves doing it?
It can be hard for many of us to actually sit down and contemplate our weight and accept ourselves for who we are. We are constantly being bombarded by tips on how to lose weight, the best new looks available, how we can slim down and how we can work at hiding various imperfections on our bodies. It doesn't take long before we can start to feel as though we are under constant criticism from almost every direction.
Body shaming involves a series of different standpoints:
- Criticizing the look of our own appearance and comparing our appearance to other people.
- Criticizing someone else's appearance to their face.
- Criticizing someone else's appearance or comparing them behind their back.
No matter what type of criticism that someone faces, all of these particular standpoints do count as body shaming. Judging physical features can have some consequences but unfortunately these types of standpoints are regularly occurring for people.
We know that body shaming can have some tough consequences on our own confidence as well as the confidence of others. Even though we know that it going to potentially annoy us, upset others or cause controversy, we still continue to criticize ourselves and other people for their appearance.
One of the best ways that we can overcome the ideal body shaming is with finally expressing frustration for this idea and taking critical steps to change the automatic responses that turn us as people into body shaming individuals regularly.
Some of the best strategies for not giving into body shaming of yourself and others include:
- Focusing on traits you like: Focus on traits in your own body or other people's bodies that you like and make sure that it is known. For someone that has regular struggles or if you need help with your own body confidence, focusing on traits you like can help with positivity.
- Speak out against those that continue body shaming: the only way that we can make effort to curb this behavior is to start making other people aware of their own body shaming. Express calmly that it bothers you and others and that as they continue to shame it may actually be hurting them as well.
- Start becoming more body positive: if you can become neutral about your body or even positive about the body that you have you can start to become more body positive about other people as well. Viewing yourself and others more positively can create some very helpful energy for yourself and in your relationships.
- Practice your verbalization: the Naval to identify what you are upset about in a situation and not immediately retorting with an insult can help you to go to body shaming automatically. Practice your communication skills and work on conflict resolution without viciously attacking people for their shape.
Keep some of these top ideas in mind on body shaming and how you can avoid it in your life!