Recently, a client spoke to me because she feels very disturbed with her present weight as doctor told her that she is obese. She fears that being overweight, hiring managers may discriminate against hiring obese job candidates.
While little could be done to stop the stigma that obese job candidates face, I believe it is important that they need to start with a healthy positive body image of themselves.
In order to help her better, I decided to go to Singapore General Hospital to do some research on steps to a positive body image.
I attended a talk and I am glad to share with her some good points from National Eating Disorder Association Singapore on how to have a positive body image.
Ten steps to a positive body image
Appreciate all that your body can do
Every day, your body carries you closer to your dreams. Celebrate the amazing things your body does for you such as running, singing, dancing, laughing, planning and dreaming.
List 10 things you like about yourself
It is important to start a list of attributes that is not related to your weight or what you look like. Read the list often. Add to it as you become aware of more things to like about yourself.
Remind yourself that true beauty is not skin deep
When you feel good about yourself, you carry yourself with a sense of confidence, self acceptance and openness that makes you beautiful regardless of your physical looks. Beauty is a state of mind not a state of your body.
Look at the beauty within you
When you see yourself in a mirror or in your mind, choose not to focus on specific body parts. See yourself as you want others to see you – as a whole person.
Surround yourself with positive people
It is easier to feel good about yourself and your body when you are around others who are supportive of you.
Overcome negative thoughts with positive ones
Shut down those voices in your head that tell you your body is not good enough. The next time you start to tear yourself down, build yourself back up with a few quick affirmations that work for you.
Wear clothes that are comfortable
Wear comfortable outfits that make you feel good about your body. Work with your body, not against it.
Be a critical viewer of social and media messages that do not make you feel good.
Protest messages that make you feel bad about yourself or your body. Write a letter to the advertiser to raise your concerns.
Do something nice for yourself
Let your body know you appreciate it. Take a bubble bath, make time for a nap, find a peaceful place outside to relax.
Use the time and energy that you might have spent worrying about food, calories and your weight to do something more worthwhile. Reaching out to other people can help you feel better about yourself and make a positive change in our world
We all may have our days when we feel awkward or uncomfortable of our bodies, but the key to developing positive body image is to recognize and respect our natural shape and learn to overpower those negative thoughts and feelings with positive, affirming and accepting ones.