Health and Wellness at Skidmore
Loving Your Body
- Realize that you cannot change your body type. Learn to love and respect your body and to work with what you have.
- Invest time and money in yourself, rather than the diet and supplement industry. Spend your extra money on flattering clothes, fitness equipment, haircuts, massages, and other personal indulgences-not on diets.
- Stop weighing yourself. Focus on how your clothes fit and how you feel. If you keep trying to achieve an unrealistically low body weight, you're setting yourself up for failure, depression, disordered eating, and a poor quality of life.
- Stop comparing yourself to others. Celebrate your body and the marvelous things it can do when you are fit and well-nourished. So often, we take these things for granted.
- Move and enjoy your body. Go walking, swimming, biking, and dancing. Do yoga, aerobics, and weight training…. not because you have to, but because it makes you feel strong and energized.
- Surround yourself with people who have a healthy relationship with food, weight, and their bodies. It will make a difference in how you feel about yourself. Also, remember to set a good example for others by refraining from "fat talk" when you're with friends and family.
- Stop your negative thoughts and statements about yourself. Focus on what you love about yourself. Compliment yourself. Talk to your body the way you would talk to a good friend.
- Reclaim your own inner strength. Focus on the unique qualities and personality traits that make you a special and successful person.
- Nurture your inner self. Enjoy things you find relaxing (e.g. music, bubble baths, fragrances, candles, massages, reading, writing, napping), be close to nature (e.g. garden, sunsets, beach, stars), and/or seek spiritual connection (e.g. prayer, meditation, inspirational reading, reflection). Feeling good on the inside is key to feeling good on the outside.
- Examine the degree to which your self-esteem depends upon your appearance. Although it may seem natural to wish you looked like a fashion model or a body builder, basing your happiness on this desire may lead to failure. Unrealistic goals can prevent you from exploring ways to enhance your life.
- Broaden your perspective. Talk to people you trust, read books about body image, or write in a journal. These activities may help you to recognize emotionally destructive thoughts and put body image into perspective.
- Recognize that "fat-ism" is a form of discrimination similar to sexism, racism, and classism. Assumptions that body shape determines attractiveness, personality, and success are incorrect and unjust. Combat discrimination when possible. Question assumptions and generalizations which promote the belief that one "type" of person is better than another.
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