How to Deal With Body Shaming – Let’s End This!

Body Shaming Iamge
Body Shaming Iamge

Body shaming is a type of bullying in which someone is assessed solely on the basis of their appearance. Typically, a person is body-shamed for being overweight or underweight or for not fitting in with society’s expectations of being “thin and beautiful”.

Body shaming is common in today’s world, and it affects both men and women. This type of bullying can affect anyone, regardless of their body size, appearance, skin color, or body shape. Even the presence of stretch marks or a scar can be used to disgrace a person’s appearance. It can be due to a person’s height, skin color, clothing, or, unfortunately, a disability.

Study confirms that 90% of women around the world are not comfortable with their looks. (Trusted Source) Where do you think this self-rejection is from? Some research points out celebrity influence to be a contributing factor.

Body Shaming can be both online and offline; it is extremely toxic and can have a detrimental impact on a person’s mental health. Hearing these hurtful remarks can be demoralizing and embarrassing, lowering a person’s self-esteem. It has the potential to cause depression and eating disorders. What’s more, you know what? Negative comments from others can sometimes cause you to feel self-conscious about your appearance. No one should be judged solely on the basis of their appearance. So, what are your options? What are your strategies for dealing with body shaming?

How to recognize Body Shaming

The first step in dealing with body shaming is to recognize if it’s happening to you. As a result, overcoming, avoiding, and dealing with body shaming may be easier for you. “You’ve gained too much weight” or “You’re so tiny, you need to eat some more” are obviously open and painful kinds of body shaming.

However, there are subtle forms of body shaming that are hidden under sarcasm that you should be aware of. This is a challenging location that can make you feel uneasy. Some instances are as follows:

  • Subtle comments like: “You’re too tall for a girl”, “Should you be eating that cake?”, “You’re never going to find a boyfriend looking like that”, “That outfit doesn’t fit you well”, “You need to join the gym soon”, “Honey, you need to eat some more.”
  • Cyberbullying: Comments or personal messages from social media that degrade your looks.

How to Deal With Body Shaming

You can’t live by what society expects of you, live by your own terms, and love yourself. You should learn how to feel good about yourself because you are worthy. Below are valuable tips on how to deal with body shaming.

Stop Hiding

It’s sad to know that people who experience body shaming hide. It can be isolating themselves from the world, covering up their bodies, or prefers to be ‘invisible’. This shouldn’t be this way. Life is too short to live in the shadows. How can you enjoy life if you keep worrying about what other people might say?

Don’t let this get to your head; start loving and accepting your body. Stop hiding! If there are situations that make you uncomfortable, take little steps to overcome this. For example, you get anxious going to the mall because you’re afraid you might bump into someone you know, and you’re afraid of the comments you might hear; you should overcome this.

Should you really limit yourself and what you can do in life because of body shaming? NO! Take little steps, and observe how you feel in that situation. Over time, you’ll overcome your fear, and you will stop hiding.

Self-Love: Be Kind to Yourself

There are many bullies in the world, and the last bully you want to deal with is yourself. So it’s important to be kind to yourself. You need to treat yourself with respect, self-love, and kindness. Practice self-love, have positive self-talk, and love your body.

Stand naked in front of the mirror, examine yourself, and learn to appreciate your body. Don’t be too hard on yourself; your inner bully is the most dangerous thing that may drag you down. Take care of yourself, remember your strengths, and quit striving for perfection. Aim to be a good person rather than the ideal one.

Take Control Of Your Social Media Platforms

Social media is filled with a lot of things. Informational stuff, keeping in touch with friends and sometimes cyberbullying. If body-shaming comments on social media cause you stress, take control of it. Try to cut out toxic persons in your life, or unfollow those who make you feel bad about yourself.

It’s your social media, and you can take control of it. Instead, have a body-positive feed. Follow pages of influencers that promote messages of body positivity. If your goal is to improve yourself physically, you can follow pages of fitness inspirations or promotes health. But if your goal is to be positive, follow pages that encourage self-acceptance.

Be Grateful for Your Body

Lastly, to deal with body shaming, you need to be grateful for your body. Instead of wishing for what’s missing, be thankful for what you have. Be grateful for good health and the body that keeps you alive every day. Be grateful for what you have right now and wish to have good health always and not a flawless body.

Remember that even celebrities have flaws; they’re just too good not to show it or too secretive about concealing it. Photos posted on social media can be deceiving, filtered, or edited, so don’t believe everything you see on social media. Just be thankful for what you have and for the chance of being alive.

What to Say to Someone Who Is Body Shaming?

Instead of getting into an argument with someone who body-shamed you, react with kindness. For example, you can say, “Thank you for your concern. For now, I’m trying to focus on loving myself and being positive about my body. I’d appreciate it if you don’t say things like this in the future”. Don’t argue further and walk away from the conversation so it won’t get worse.

What to Do When Someone Is Body-Shaming You?

The best thing to do is to call out that person in a polite manner. Never spark an argument or fight back with body-shaming them too, as this could cause you stress. You should promote positive support, not comment mean things. If you call the person out, you can feel better about yourself and take control of the situation. Find your voice and speak with peace.

By Osafo Daniel
Twitter: @iamosafodaniel

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