Do you ever have a “fat day” or an “ugly day”? Do you ever have a poor body image day? You may have them occasionally or quite frequently, but when you do have them, you feel awful. Today I am talking about some ways to challenge negative body image thinking. This in no way serves as therapy, nor can this video help you overcome something like trauma or an eating disorder. However these tips may be helpful on those bad days when you feel disgusting.
What you think impacts how you feel about yourself. What you think about yourself you will see in the reflection of the mirror. If you feel negatively about your self you will see those things reflected back to you. Maybe you have an eating disorder distorting your thinking, or maybe you have been traumatized and that experience has distorted your thinking. This distorted thinking causes you to feel you are not pretty, smart, or good enough. These tips may be helpful to help you challenge these distortions.
Tip 1. Stop comparing yourself to other people. Get off social media. You are uniquely you and you offer so much. You bring something different to the table. Thank goodness you are unique and comparing yourself to others only makes you focus on what is wrong. But remember you are not that person, and what works for you does not work for them. What works for them may not work for you. Your unique perspective, body, and life are what make this world interesting and fun.
Tip 2. Fill your mind with truth. Your eating disorder, your trauma, and your brain cause you to believe lies about your body and your self. Fill your mind with truth. A great way to do this is to put truthful statements in a place where you will see them frequently. Get some index cards and write truths all over it and place those cards on your mirror, or somewhere you will see them. Then when your brain wants to lie to you, you will have truths available to remind you of how great you are.
Tip 3. Don’t believe the lies. Your experiences, your eating disorder, your trauma, and the media are lying to you telling you, you are not good enough as you are right now. It is easy to believe the things you think because it is right there in your brain, but it is wrong. It is distorted because your eating disorder, your trauma, they are liars. Remember the truths. I know this is really hard, but remember also that sometimes what you think is not actually the truth. What is true? That is what I want you to believe and to remember.
Distorted thinking can be challenged and can be improved, but it takes work and a little bit of practice. If you want to stop believing the lies, consider asking for help. Ask for someone to help you identify the objective truths and point out the facts so it becomes easier to believe what is true.
Stephanie Waitt, LPC is a psychotherapist in private practice in Sherman, Texas. Stephanie works with young and successful women to help restore balance and peace. She specializes in working with individuals with eating disorders, trauma, anxiety, and depression.