Understanding Your Body Image

Katherine Schwarzenegger
Katherine Schwarzenegger

Why?

Asking me why certain people don't like their body image is like asking me to understand football, or how insurance companies work. I don't know. What I DO know is that a lot of people hold body image issues with themselves. It is a worldwide, and very common, ailment that plagues our country. It is all due to impossibly thin models and public figures that are plastered all over the media. Over the past few years important figures have really been honing in on the media portraying an impossible body image to younger and younger kids. Finding who you are inside and loving what is on the outside truly is key.

Recently Arnold Schwarzenegger's daughter, Katherine at the ripe age of 20 has published a new book titled : Rock What You've Got: Secrets to Loving Your Inner and Outer Beauty From Someone Who's Been There and Back. The book is about body image in young girls and how the distorted image the media has presented made her hate her body image and was "freaked out"by what she looked like in high school. She was quoted as saying, "I want to let girls know they are not alone with the changes and doubts about their body."

I loved having pink hair. It allowed me to express my fun side and made my inner quirkiness shine through.
I loved having pink hair. It allowed me to express my fun side and made my inner quirkiness shine through.

Mainstream Today

More often then not you can walk down the street and see more and more people with crazy hair colours and tattoos and piercings. It is common place these days because more people at a younger age are finding new ways to express themselves. Standing out in a crowd and saying that you are proud of who you are is a new concept. I myself have piercings, tattoos and have indulged in a crazy colour or two on my hair. You really need to understand what makes you happy in order to BE happy.

Not all the time will you find that body modification is being done as just a way of expressing yourself. 14-year-old Ariana Iacono of Clayton, N.C belongs to the Church of Body Modification and has been in the news recently as having been kicked out of school for having a nose ring. This brings forth the idea that the problem may also stem from the judgement of others.

Whitney Thompson was quoted as saying : "People don't realize that we have a billion-dollar diet industry working against our self-esteem. There is always a new product out selling us happiness if we 'finally' shed those pounds,'" she says on her blog. "If you want to change your body, then eat whole foods and get more cardio. However, I think that it is important for people to learn to love their bodies, regardless of shape or weight before they make the decision to change it."

The Judgment of Others

  Doing something for oneself, such as, having pink hair or piercings lends a person up for others judging them. The watchful disapproving eyes of others is another problem that leads to poor self-image. Ridicule and bullying in younger, school age children, have lead to suicides in recent years. Starting with a poor self-worth, pushing someone so much that it can lead to death. It is a sad state of affairs that it has come to this. I believe younger children should be taught about having a positive self worth and the consequences of bullying so this trend stops altogether.

Find a Good Role Model

Finding a good, positive role model for today's youth in an unapologetic world can be difficult. Many curvy celebrities are proud of how they look and aren't afraid to let the public know. Finding positive role models in the media to relate to that look more like you do will have a positive impact on how you feel about yourself.

The distortion of Ads

Feeling beautiful again

   Thinking about what you DON'T like about yourself is always on your mind, why not trying thinking about what you DO like about yourself? Everyone reading this who has self esteem issues should sit down and write down 30 things you like about yourself. It may not be easy but it is a good first step in the right direction. Placing this list on a mirror or somewhere it can be seen everyday is a good tool to get you on your way. Just remember, everyone has bad days. Don't get discouraged when your hair isn't doing exactly what you want, or you can't find that perfect outfit just remind yourself why you think you are beautiful. Don't let others make you feel down on yourself because no one can judge you. Be yourself and find your inner beauty and let it shine through. You are beautiful, no matter what.

If you or someone you know needs help...

Here are some wonderful resources to get you started. There is always help out there if you need it, you are NOT alone!

http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

http://www.beatbullying.org/

http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/

Working Past Inner Demons

Finding what is right for you is important. Not everyone is the same: A person who has an eating disorder should never go through that alone and expert help should be sought out. If you or anyone you know is being bullied, a grown up should be consulted. If you or anyone you know is considering or has considered suicide, please, don't keep that to yourself. Extremes of inner issues can lead to major problems down the road for anyone involved. Don't let your or someone you know be a victim.

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Comments 14 comments

Sunny Robinson profile image

Sunny Robinson 6 years ago from Tennessee

This, written by a woman who was just telling me how much she didn't like her picture above because of uneven skin. ;)

Just teasing. Your own admission to that is proof that self-image is sooo pervasive. You are beautiful and so are most people that I know. To me, ugly people are people who display the attitude of being superior or better in such a shallow way. That ruins any beauty they may have had.

I love this hub! Rated up lots.


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

silly silly... lol I didn't say I hated that picture. lol... Just said I had an uneven skin tone.. you are a goober smoocher lol


Sunny Robinson profile image

Sunny Robinson 6 years ago from Tennessee

You said you didn't look good in that picture. :P Same difference. And I rarely notice your skin tone being even. Your face is pretty, so shup!


Heather Johnson 6 years ago

I really liked this post! : )


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

I did not you goober smoocher! I said I liked that picture but I didn't like that I had an uneven skin tone... geeze... looks like lack of sleep has fried your brain. lol.. @Heather, thank you.. lol


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 6 years ago from California, USA

My 8 year old granddaughter already has issues with her looks. It makes me sad to see. Every day I call her on the phone and we go through the same routine. I ask,"Are you smart? To which she must reply, "I am smart". Then I ask, "Are you kind to everyone?". She says, "Yes, I am kind to everyone". My final question is, "Are you beautiful?" After a pause, she will say, "Yes, grandma, I am beautiful". I figure that if we do this everyday, she will believe that she really is all of these things. Girls, especially, have such a difficult time. Sogno, I think your picture is absolutely beautiful and I can tell by your hubs that you are kind and smart, so never have any doubts. Great hub!


Sunny Robinson profile image

Sunny Robinson 6 years ago from Tennessee

Jillian, that is so gorgeous and sweet to read. Perhaps you should write about this.


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

I agree, you should tell her story. There also seems to really need to be a solid event that proves this to her so that not only she can say it, but she can see it as well.

Maybe talk to her school and see if one of the teachers can have a simple "what I like about you" exercise. If you can't convince a school to do this see if it can be done at a camp or just have a simple sleep over with all her best girl friends. Have each child write one positive attribute about all the other kids that they like, then take all the lists and divide them up in to personal lists. Decorate it with fun colours and at the top title it "What I like about ____".

I had one of these list done for me when I was in school and I still have it. Even though it seems old and childish it really is nice to see what all these other people liked about me at the time and it made me realize it wasn't as bad as I thought it was. I will admit, I still struggle with body issues at times and having reminders of why you are great is really helpful.


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

actually, here in a bit I will find it, scan it and post it as an afterthought to this hub so you can see it.


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 6 years ago from California, USA

These are such great ideas, because I am sure that my grandaughter's little friends all feel the same way. I am going to not only write a hub, but I am going to talk to my daughter (Jocelynn's mom) about having a sleep over to reinforce the fact that they are all beautiful, smart and kind; with the latter two being what makes them all beautiful. Funny thing about the phone routine- as soon as she gets my call, she knows what is going to happen first, because she will say, "Okay, grandma, let's do it now." Not sure if that's because she likes it or hates it, but it is pretty cute. Hopefully, she will remember this long after I am gone and pass it on to her own daughter or granddaughter. Maybe by that time, women will have conquered this feeling of inadequacy that we all seem to fight.


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

Katherine had stated in the article I have posted above about how her father had reinforced the issue of her being beautiful and it really stuck with her. Having someone tell you all the time and remind you that you are no matter what really hammers it home.


lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

Marvelous treatment of the body image problem-a global issue, indeed. I was brought up to detest most everything about my body but somehow escaped eating disorders, etc. I am grateful that at 53, I've finally gotten over my 'teachings!'

Thanks, SP!


SognoPiccolo profile image

SognoPiccolo 6 years ago from Wilmington, Ohio Author

So glad you liked it. Thank you for stopping by and reading and thank you for your comment. I really do think that if being told you are beautiful at a young age a lot it really sticks with you as you get older.


Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

Many try to perform the impossible trying to improve on the natural beauty given by God. This is a big mistake. It can't be done.

Brother Dave.

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