This is endemic it seems, all over the world; it particularly affects young (and not-so-young) women, alas. And the recipe for dis-ease is simple:
and you can see why a poor image is such a big self esteem issue. It sells product!
2% of today's women see themselves as beautiful"
-- BBC Website (2006)
I have no cure-alls for this malaise (mainly affecting women - it did affect me when I was younger, though), but I do hope to inspire everyone - via videos, articles and comments, etc. - that a positive body image is worth it! Because, er, you're worth it!
Thankfully, Riggie Freyer's "How to Develop Positive Self-Image" article (below) is a starting point to an improved image of yourself. I think so anyway. As well as this self-image hypnosis download.
Before I have my say, I want to illustrate to you, via this YouTube video, just how serious this self image problem is. So let's get going with this video called "Media's Influence on Women's Image"...
Okay, right now, at this point in my life, and AS A MAN, I have a positive body image: I like how I look, a lot! Yes, I could be taller and, yes, I could look younger and I'm sure I could even have a few more muscles. Still, I believe I've never looked better!
It wasn't always like that, though. In my teens and early twenties I went through my whole body, part by body part, finding fault. My unhappy-with-my-body list went something like this:
Most of the issues above are related to my self esteem and body image, yes. And none of it came from the media. Now, crazily, some of these 'faults' in my body I see as being positive - 'nice bum' (ahem!), smooth skin etc.
As I said, I love my body. I probably like my body much more than most people like their bodies . But, as you can see, it wasn't always thus.
But I managed to change this, over time. (I know it's easier being a man, as Rachel explains below, but I still believe it's possible to have a positive self image whoever you are!) Yes, I really do believe what Baz Luhrman said in that daft (and inspirational song) called Wear Sunscreen):
"Enjoy your body, use it every way
you can, don't be afraid of it,
or what other people think of it, it's the greatest instrument you'll ever own"
That's all fine in theory, I guess, let's see what Rachel has to say...
Rachel knows how important it is to love your body. And, as a mother, she wants to encourage her young daughter to believe that her body is beautiful (because it is!). Yet, despite all this, Rachel continues to still have issues with her own body image. The issues may have changed over the years but this symptom of low self esteem remains, it seems.
After all, as many women will know, it's all very well to say 'love your body' but it's just not as easy as that in today's glamour-obsessed world!
And that's why I asked her to write me a short piece called, "Why a Woman Will Never Be Happy With How She Looks". Watch out, though, Rachel pulls no punches here. Bravo!
By the way, Rachel - and any other women reading - here's Patricia Lynn Reilley's poem about being a woman that may help make a difference. Patricia's poem is called: Imagine a Woman.
This is a video about body image, self image and self esteem from timelytv.com...