Body Image 

Negative body image may not seem that unusual in today’s world.  We hear many boys and girls, men and women, describe their bodies in negative ways.  It may seem normal to hear someone say, “  I feel so fat!”, or “ Do you think I look fat in this?”.  Body image disturbance may occur as part of an eating disorder, as Body Dysmorphic Disorder (a preoccupation with an imagined defect in our appearance), or as a result of living in a society that perpetuates the notion of the “ thin ideal”.   When our bodies become the focus of negative attention on a daily or even hourly basis, it becomes overwhelming and impacts our ability to function normally in our daily life.

Negative body distortion means we begin to see our bodies in distorted and unrealistic ways.  We may think we are fatter or thinner than we really are, or have obsessive negative thoughts about the size or look of specific body parts .  We may become so self-conscious about our body that we begin staying home more, fearing what others think and say about us, resulting in less and less social involvement and more and more isolation.

When feelings about your body become a reason to stop doing things you previously enjoyed, or you begin excessively exercising or restricting food in an effort to change how you look, your eating behaviors are significantly impairing your life.  If you find yourself constantly judging yourself about your eating habits or body size, or fear that others are judging you harshly, then your negative body image is impacting your ability to create pleasure in your life.

Creating a more positive body image is a process of healing that involves developing a positive and healthy lifestyle that allows you to focus on living the life you want to live.

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© Terryann Sanders,  Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, 1361 S. Winchester Blvd, Ste 101, San Jose, CA 95128  408 410-9370, All rights reserved.