Is there a Relationship Between Body Image And Self Esteem? Is it the case that how we feel about our body controls how we feel about ourselves in general? Can we actually improve our self esteem by working on our body image?
Self esteem is all about how we think of ourselves. A person with high or normal self esteem recognizes that they have value as a person. Sure they can see their weaknesses, but they will usually focus on their strengths. They are prepared to take responsibility for their lives. They believe that it is in their power to create a good life for themselves, no matter what physical or mental qualities they have been born with.
A person with low self esteem, on the other hand, does not believe that they have value as a person. They do not feel they are in control of what happens to them. They tend to speak and think of themselves in negative ways, and talk about what they cannot do or how unlucky they are. They may blame other people for their misfortunes. They expect to be unhappy, and do not believe there is anything they can do about it.
Of course the body is a large part of who we are. Therefore, it is clear that body image and self esteem must have a close connection. Often, a person with low self esteem will have an extremely negative view of their body. They will seem to see all of their bad points. They do not think they can change them. At the same time, they play down the strong or attractive physical qualities that they have.
One example is how the person reacts to compliments. Imagine a man tells a woman that she has pretty legs. A woman with plenty of self esteem will react to the compliment by thinking, “OK, so it sounds like people think I have nice legs. I should make the most of them by choosing clothes that show them off.”
A person with low self esteem will have thoughts more like, “He’s saying I have nice legs. Of course it’s not true. He must be trying to get me into bed.” Or, “Why doesn’t he say something nice about my face? Am I so ugly that all he can find to compliment me on is my legs?”
There is also often a connection between distorted body image and self esteem. An example of distorted body image is found in many anorexics, who often believe they are fat when they are actually underweight for their height. No matter how their weight changes, they have trouble believing that they can be attractive.
But it is not only anorexics who believe they are fatter than they are, or less attractive. Remember when you were a teenager? Most teenagers have low self esteem at one time or another, and it is very common for teens to believe they are too fat or too skinny, or just plain ugly.
But if you look back on photos of yourself as a teenager after 10 years or more, you will see that in fact, you were fine. With that kind of distance, you can see your good points. So take the time to see your good points in the present, too.
What we think when we look in the mirror has a big effect on how we see ourselves and our lives. Anybody wanting to improve their self esteem will take a big step forward by working on any negative feelings that they have about their body, because body image and self esteem do have a very close connection.
If you’re here from Pinterest please repin these
If You Want More, You Have To Require More From Yourself
If You’re Going Through Hell, Keep Going
You’re Always With Yourself, So You Might As Well Enjoy The Company
How To Be Confident
How To Be A Rational, Happy, Productive Human Being
How To Be A Positive Thinker
Simple And Effective Ways To Boost Your Self-Esteem