In the Age of Social media where deceptive ideas of oneself are portrayed on the internet to please a certain class of people or their So-called “ Fans. The societal standard of how one should look has brought about a long-standing problem for many individuals. This idea of striving to attain society’s accepted form has had many individuals do some harmful things to their body and in some cases life-threatening.
The influence of social media these days has not contributed any better to help curb this problem as individuals are trolled and shamed for either being too fat, too skinny, having an awkward nose, having too little breast etc. Body shaming is much common among the female gender than the male gender.
In Africa, the conversation on body acceptance and positivist is ill spoken or left untouched due to many factors that hinder the subject. Surgery, injections and use of pills over the years have been the most go to method of changing one’s body. Some result to unhealthy eating habits all in the name of dieting to achieve a body image. In the fashion world, there have been many cases of models overdosing on pills, starving and resulting in unreliable methods just to stay skinny.
Human beings should have a positive body image by accepting oneself and be accepting of their own bodies as well as that of others. Body shaming is one of the key factors that hinder the concept of body acceptance in the sense that, it limits the courage and confidence in oneself.
Knowing your body type and wearing fitting clothes that flatter your body is a bold step to promoting one’s body image. One does not need society’s approval to feel confident and proud of one’s own body. Instead, there can be an improvement in one’s body image by eating right, staying positive, investing in one’s self and putting a stop to comparisons.
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However, we all come in different shapes and sizes, and attempting to fit into a size 4 skinny jean does not need to be your goal in order to be healthy. Wherever you are in your health journey, that journey should start with knowing you have worth and value as a human being in whatever shape you are in.
- . I promise to stop speaking negatively about my body or others. When I catch myself body bashing, I will do my best to make a correction by saying something positive about myself.
- To surround me with people and messages that promote self-care, self-love, and respect for all. I will treat my body with kindness and compassion, and encourage my loved ones to do the same.
- To think critically about media messages and peer pressure from friends and family. I will curate my social media content to be body positive by following people and posts that are aligned with my values. I will unfollow accounts that negatively affect the way I feel about my body and myself.
- To remember that everybody has the right to live in a body in which they feel safe, included, valued, and accepted regardless of differences. I will show appreciation for diversity; recognizing that people come in all colours, shapes, and sizes.
- To remind me that everyone is so much more than their appearance. I will remind myself that my body size, shape, and weight are not what makes me, I know that the size of my heart is more important than the size of my waist, and I will not let numbers define my self-worth.
Accept yourself. Accept your body.
Celebrate yourself. Celebrate your body.
Assistant Photographer @Iamjunie
Art Director Alexandrina