I really need some advice on body image. I am quite short (5ft) and am naturally a bit more curvy looking. I eat healthy and workout regularly, but I just never feel good enough…on social media all I see are these beautiful/sexy/curvy/fit women and I feel like I’m doing something wrong. It’s like I’m not working hard enough, eating clean enough, or just not working as hard as they are. It has really impacted my self esteem and self worth…any advice on how to get over this would be greatly appreciated.
Sad on Social
Dear Sad on Social,
You are not alone.
So many of us women are constantly comparing ourselves against the latest beauty ideals. Be it putting ourselves up against magazine cover girls, Instagram influencers, actresses, models, or the pretty girl in the front row of your yoga class – I guarantee that you’re not the only one doing this and you are DEF not the only one who feels terrible afterwards.
Let me remind you of this: Comparison is the thief of joy.
The less you can compare, the happier you’re going to feel. It’s really that simple.
But…how do you stop yourself from comparing?
First, it begins with you understanding that comparison is a waste of energy. Why use your precious energy to pick yourself a part when you could be using that same energy to build yourself up? We all have 24 hours in a day, and what we choose to do with our limited time here on earth will dictate how our future self will look. I choose to focus on me instead of focusing on other people. That’s the secret to getting ahead and getting what you want. I want you to CHOOSE to stop comparing. This is a choice you can make.
Secondly, please realize that what people post on social media is simply a portfolio of the best moments and the best angles they’ve chosen to share. That’s right – they’re not sharing the the tears, the exhaustion, the frustration, the anger, and the sadness that’s very normal for human beings. Why? Simple. It doesn’t get likes and engagement. So the social media algorithm has trained us to share the better parts of our lives.
Additionally, a lot of people hype things up and make things sound wayyyyy better than they actually are. (Trust me – I personally know people like this. I’ve either muted them or unfollowed them because I can’t take the exaggeration.) And then you have the people who actually photoshop their pictures so that they have perfectly smooth skin, teeny tiny waists, longer legs, skinnier arms, and enhanced butts. There’s so many free photo editing apps out there that can allow anyone (like even my mom) to make believable edits to a photo. So again – you cannot take to heart everything you see!
Finally – you mentioned that looking at other perfect bodies on social media makes you feel like you aren’t doing enough. I get how that can feel. So I’m going to ask you a tough question: Do you, in the deepest part of your heart and soul, think you are actually doing enough to get where you want to be?
If I asked you that question and you suddenly feel attacked or offended, then I think you know what that means. It’s tough to be honest with ourselves because when things are bad, it never feels good to realize that you are where you are because of well, you. But know what? The good thing is that if you got yourself here, you can also get yourself out! You are in control of your destiny. It’s okay to take a moment to feel sad or angry with yourself, but let those emotions be short and temporary. Once you start creating a specific plan for how you’re gonna get to where you wanna be – girl, you’re gonna be on fire! A girl with a plan and determination is UNSTOPPABLE!
That’s how my 90 Day Journey started. My goal was to get in the fittest shape of my life mentally and physically. I declared my goals, how I was going to eat, how I was going to work out, and how I was going to reflect daily. And you know what? It’s been over 100 days AFTER my 90 Day Journey has ended I’ve not gained back any of that pre-journey weight and any of that pre-journey timid mentality. It all started with me being brutally honest with myself.
On the other hand, if you genuinely and truly are doing everything to the best of your ability, then girl, you’re doing your best and I am so proud of you!!! That is all anyone can ask for!! YOU ARE AMAZING AND BEAUTIFUL!!!! If no one has told you that lately, I am telling you that now.
Listen, your version of best looks different than someone else’s version of best. Your version of happy is different than someone else’s version of happy. Your version of success is different than someone else’s version of success.
We are all made up of different genes and DNA – so how can we expect the same results? Biologically and genetically, we are different.
Accept your body for what it is and focus on the things that make you feel strong…things that make you feel skilled…things that make you feel happy. When you shift your focus from the physical to the internal, life gets so much better. And you know what? Sometimes all that stress from worrying about your body, makes your body stagnate in progress. Letting go will let things flow. And maybe, just maybe, your body will end up transforming without you obsessing over it so much.
Hope that helps Sad on Social!
PS – If you have a burning question you want to ask me, I’m taking questions via text at 510-692-4556. Currently this only works for US and Canada. If you’re outside of those countries, you can leave a question below.