7 Steps to Redirect your Mindset with Body Image
7 Steps to Redirect your Mindset with Body Image
Hands up if you have ever been a victim of self-criticism and sabotage! Girl, I hear you…loud and clear and I am waving both of my hands in the air!!
We are born into this world innocent and loving of all things, including ourselves. And then, no sooner do we speak our first words, than we subconsciously begin to absorb others' opinions and the subliminal (sometimes not so subliminal) societal messages of perfectionism. Immediately, our subconscious detaches from self-love and we internalize that we are, by societal definition, not OK as we are. Here’s the real kicker – perfection doesn’t even exist – it is not a rational thing. What is rational, however, is the make-up of the human body, yet, that is exactly what we are made to believe makes us imperfect.
Although it has taken time, and I’m talking years of self-criticism and using humour about my body to create the illusion of confidence, I have finally undone what I’ve absorbed since infancy and learnt to love and accept my body as it is, in its entirety. AND, this transformation has had a tremendously positive impact on my behaviours, patterns and achievements!
If you’re still caught in a mindset where your self-worth is determined by your physical body, opposed to your qualities, abilities and characteristics, then these tips are for you. They are quick to learn and implement and can immediately shift your mindset, boosting your confidence and bringing a transformation to live your best life NOW!
So, let’s dive right in…
Absorb body positive messages – As you move throughout your day, pay attention to anything that promotes or encourages self-love or positive body image. Whether you intentionally perform an internet search for “body positive quotes” or simply keep your eyes peeled for advertisements that promote body positivity and self-acceptance, allow yourself to be aware. This can even be as simple as overhearing a conversation between colleagues, friends or strangers and absorbing any positive verbiage.
It comes down to this: the more positive messages you absorb, the more your mind will trigger itself to focus on the positive and draw your attention to even more positive messaging.
Practice positive affirmations - If you’re not already in the habit of writing and reciting positive affirmations at least once EVERY DAY, you need to start this ASAP. Positive affirmations play a crucial role in helping you develop a positive mindset by replacing your negative thinking patterns with new belief systems. When using positive affirmations, be sure to use present tenths so that your affirmations are absorbed by the sub-conscious, making the positive outcome more immediate.
Examples of body positive affirmations include “I am beautiful exactly as I am”, “My body loves and supports me every day”, “I love my body unconditionally”, “I fuel my body with the proper nutrients to stay strong and healthy”, “I love how strong my butt feels after a set of squats” and, the most important affirmation “I am worthy”.
Not only do positive affirmations improve your mindset, but, when used consistently (on a daily basis) they encourage you to make lifestyle changes that incorporate stress reducing, body loving activities such as yoga, exercise and positive self talk.
Stop comparing yourself to others – I know this one can be hard, at any age, but it is one of the most important steps in developing a healthy mindset around your body. Always remember that we are all unique and deserving beings and we all experience different lifestyles and situations that affect the growth and development of our bodies. Just stay focused on your positive self-talk and know that diversity is beautiful.
Focus on the things you like about yourself – start paying more attention to your positive attributes like skills, talents and abilities. If you have become so engrained in negative self-talk that you truly have nothing positive to focus on, think instead about compliments that you have received in the past. What are some positive things that people have said about you? I know it can sometimes be difficult to compliment ourselves without sounding boastful, however, when people throw us compliments, its because they are speaking truth. You, sista, are worthy of believing what you hear and growing in your confidence!!
Think healthier not skinnier – for centuries, society has had women conditioned to believe that when it comes to our bodies, thinner is better. This is the biggest misconception imaginable and the cause of mental health issues among females of all ages. It is important to remember that we are all built differently – physically, emotionally and genetically. What is deemed a healthy lifestyle for one, is likely not a healthy lifestyle for another. Incorporate the pillars of health that are most fitting for your lifestyle and goals and focus on being healthy and strong. Remember that not everyone who is skinny is healthy and not everyone who is healthy is skinny!
Get naked, stark naked, stand in front of a full body mirror and say, “I love you”. I’m not kidding! If you don’t appreciate your body, you can’t expect somebody else to. The best way to start loving ALL OF YOU, right now, is to get nude and take in your natural beauty. Do this at least once a day. If you are new to getting naked in front of yourself, it gets easier as you go – trust me. Flirt with yourself – smile, wink, laugh, stare at yourself seductively and enjoy! The more intimate you get, the more you will appreciate the moment and yourself. If you make this part of your morning routine, it will really help adjust your attitude and set a positive tone for the day.
Bonus Step - becuase 6 isn't enough, and I promised you 7:
When you are working on adjusting your mindset as it relates to body image, be prepared and willing to walk away from those who continually speak negative about themselves or others; Even if those people are your close friends or partner. You don’t have to be rude, but be clear that you are focusing on developing a healthier and more transformative you. Flourishing in change requires letting go of that which holds us back. Heck, girl – I left my marriage when I worked through my body image mindset; our differences no longer served me. If your friends or partner respect you, they’ll respect your choice. And, who knows, your choice and new perspective may encourage them to change their perceptions and verbiage as well.
Although these will take time and practice, I can assure you that implementing them now as part of your daily routine will allow you to make an immediate shift in your thought process and begin the path to transformation and freedom!
© 2022 Master Your Body - Mindset Coaching