Why Diet Culture is Killing Body Confidence

We’ve all seen them, the advertisements of beautiful women without a blemish, scar or dimple on their skin. Even when we know all about airbrushing, Photoshop, and the like, we can’t help but feel inadequate when seeing what the “ideal woman” looks like. Truth is, there is no ideal woman. Women are worthy of appreciation and of love no matter their shape, size, ethnicity, body hair, proportions and so on.

Body positivity has been gaining momentum in a number of social media trends and magazines. It’s for the better; it really shouldn't be a trend but something permanent that we can all hold onto. Feeling comfortable and confident in your own skin is a key step towards happiness and acceptance of who you are. The knowledge that your body, no matter what it looks like, is worthy of being loved and appreciated.

It’s important to come to terms with the fact that your body might never look exactly the way you imagine a perfect body might look. This doesn't mean your body isn’t beautiful. This doesn't mean you are any less worthy than someone who has a body you perceive to be “better.”

Your body is what is going to carry you for life; you are bound to it and it is bound to you. To forever be limited by details you don’t like about your physicality only serves negativity. Logically, there is no use in insecurity. And yet emotionally, of course, you’ll be insecure, it’s part of human nature.

Even if you’re years into your body positivity journey, you might find yourself looking at an advertisement or a haul video on YouTube, asking yourself why in the world you don’t look like that.

Insecurity is not weakness, but insecurity can become weakness. There is no shame in feeling uncertain or uncomfortable with your body. But again, nothing loves you like your own body does. Nothing keeps you going like that vessel. It’s your job to give your body love, to take good care of it, whatever it takes.

If you can’t find a balance of what kind of stage you’re comfortable at with your body, try taking control of the situation yourself. I started lifting weights because I was so sick of feeling weak and small. It’s been three years now and I feel so confident with my competence in the gym. Along with that comes the pride of knowing that I built my body this way: I worked at my legs for hours and hours, the product of which I take a lot of pride in now. No one can take that away from me because it’s been all my own effort; my own sweat went into the way I look. Taking control of how you move your body can really help you cope with feelings of powerlessness in terms of body image.

As women, (and men, we’re all about equality) we need to celebrate our bodies, not criticize them.

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