It’s important to understand that there isn’t a single type of beauty – everyone sees it differently, just like everyone has different tastes in food.
Body image is how we think and feel about ourselves physically, and how we believe others see us. Almost everyone has things about their body which they don’t like or make them feel self-conscious – even the most beautiful, confident seeming people in the world have bits they don’t like!
You should also remember that a lot of images you see every day – on TV, social media and in advertisements – aren’t realistic. Photos and images use filters and editing to create ideas of perfection, and stars have armies of make-up artists, personal trainers, wardrobe teams and lighting experts to make them look beautiful on screen.
It’s important to understand that there isn’t a single type of beauty – everyone sees it differently, just like everyone has different tastes in food. There simply isn’t a right or wrong way to look. But it’s something almost everyone worries about. Last year, a survey by a charity found 30% of adults had felt so stressed about their body image and appearance that they felt overwhelmed and unable to cope.
Body image issues can affect anyone at any age, and can directly impact your mental health. If you’re worried, or struggling, here are some things you can do:
Be kind to yourself – and don’t compare yourself to others. Images online, in magazines and on TV aren’t real – and you are a unique and special individual. Remember that and treat yourself nicely
Focus on the things you like about yourself, and the body parts you do like
Spend time with people who make you feel positive about yourself – it can help to write down the nice things people say to you – and not sure about how you look. Remember people value you for a lot of different reasons
Think about what advice you would give a friend if they were struggling with body image – and remember that advice
Talk to someone you trust
If you’re struggling to cope, or are particularly worried about one part of your body you could talk to your GP about how you’re feeling, or visit some of the links below: