Forget Models! Why You Should Have A Good Body Image

I recently wrote a post for another blog ( about how to help your daughter build a positive self-image. While girls and young women can have a particularly hard time with self-esteem, one thing I mentioned was that it is important for you to have a good self-image too. After all, kids learn a lot more by what they see us do than by what they hear us say. If they see us looking in the mirror and saying, 'I'm fat' and comparing ourselves to other people, they may do the same thing. They may start to feel that they need to look like something else to be pretty. What I hope to accomplish here is to inject some realism so that both you and your daughter can feel better about yourselves and your looks.

The first thing I will say is this: when it comes to beauty in the media, things aren't what they seem! We see all these skinny models in magazines with flawless skin and perfectly flat stomachs. You don't see any excess fat or blemishes anywhere. There's a reason for that-it's called 'airbrushing', or 'Photoshop'. Magazine editors have all kinds of tools at their fingertips that can make a photograph look like something it isn't, and they do it all the time. In the digital age, it's become even easier for television producers, photographers and editors to make someone look flawless when they really aren't. Also, celebs often have personal trainers and makeup artists at their disposal. Those of us in the real world simply don't have these things. If I spent hours in the gym and had a professional hair stylist and fashion consultant, I would probably look perfect too! The standards the media sets for beauty are mostly unrealistic, so we should not feel bad if we don't live up to them. Real is beautiful too.

Believe it or not, most men don't go for the model types anyway. One study I read says that some 80% of men interviewed prefer women with meat on their bones to the stick-thin types. Even if they do drool over Pamela Anderson, et al., men usually understand that not every woman is going to look like that and do not expect their wives or girlfriends to live up to that standard. Once they mature and get past the comic-book covers, they see that it's not all about looks; inner beauty is important too. They like us the way we are, belly fat and all. If they don't, well, feel free to kick them to the curb. That's on them, not you. Don't expect yourself to be super-stylish or have the perfect face and body, because (good) men don't either.

To sum it all up, our body images should be based on reality, not celebrity. We should notice the good parts of ourselves instead of focusing on what we see as flaws. If you feel you are beautiful, you can help your daughter feel that she is too.

1 comment:

  1. Great article!! It certainly is impossible to live up to those unrealistic images the world portrays.
    It's important to feel good about yourself, but I am just as guilty as the next at times about wishing I looked like those too perfect women.