2+ Positive Body Image Activities & Worksheets (2023)

2+ Positive Body Image Activities & Worksheets (1)How do you feel about your body? If you don’t immediately answer “Great!” with a smile—don’t worry, you’re not alone!

This is a very common problem for people today, especially women. With advertisements and images of a specific body type constantly bombarding us wherever we are or whatever we’re doing—on television, on our phones, on social media, on our commutes and while we’re out shopping—it’s easy to see how we can begin to feel bad about our bodies.

Building a positive body image is a good way to counteract this negative stream of images we are encouraged to compare ourselves to.

If you’re feeling unattractive and down about your body, read on to find out how you can improve how you feel about yourself. It doesn’t matter what size you are—you are always deserving of love and respect, especially from yourself!

Before you read on, we thought you might like to download our 3 Self-Compassion Exercises for free. These detailed, science-based exercises will not only increase the compassion and kindness you show yourself and your body but will also give you the tools to help your clients, students or employees be more compassionate towards themselves.

This Article Contains:

  • What is a Positive Body Image? (Definition)
  • Effects of the Media and Instagram on PBI
  • How to Feel Good About Your Body
  • How to be Happy with Your Body When You’re Overweight
  • Worksheets and Activities for Improving Your Body Image
  • Best Books on Positive Body Image
  • Further Reading: Blogs and Articles
  • Relevant YouTube Videos
  • A Take-Home Message
  • References

What is a Positive Body Image? (Definition)

In simple terms, body image is:

“…the perception that a person has of their physical self and the thoughts and feelings that result from that perception.”

(National Eating Disorders Collaboration)

As this definition shows, body image isn’t just one unidimensional construct. It’s made up of four aspects:

  1. Perceptual body image: how you see your body
  2. Affective body image: how you feel about your body
  3. Cognitive body image: how you think about your body
  4. Behavioral body image: the way you behave as a result of your perceptual, affective, and cognitive body image (NEDC, 2017)

When your body image is positive, you are able to accept, appreciate, and respect your body (NEDC, n.d.). You won’t necessarily avoid feeling any insecurities or think your body is perfect, but you will be able to acknowledge any insecurities for what they are and believe that your body is perfect for you.

According to clinical psychologist and faculty member Elizabeth Halsted, there are three components to having a positive body image, or PBI:

  1. Self-esteem: valuing ourselves and believing that others appreciate us and enjoy our company.
  2. A positive attitude: accepting our strengths and our weaknesses, and avoiding three negative attitudes:
    a. Perfectionism: holding ideals or standards that are impossible (or next to impossible) to achieve.
    b. Comparing: making social comparisons with others.
    c. Being highly critical or judgmental: the more critical and judgmental we are of others, the more likely we are to be critical and judgmental of ourselves.
  3. Emotional stability: maintaining a healthy connection to our thoughts and feelings while also being able to share our experiences with others (Halsted, 2016).

Improving your own body image can be hard, but it’s certainly doable. We’ll describe some exercises and activities you can do to boost your own positive body image, or PBI, but this list from the National Eating Disorder Collaboration (2017) is full of useful suggestions on how to be more body positive:

  • Focus on your positive qualities, skills, and talents.
  • Say positive things to yourself every day (practicing affirmations puts this suggestion to use)
  • Avoid negative or berating self-talk
  • Focus on appreciating and respecting what your body can do
  • Set positive, health-focused goals rather than weight loss-focused goals.
  • Admire the beauty of others, but avoid comparing yourself to anyone else.
  • Remind yourself that many media images are unrealistic and unattainable for the vast majority of people (and even for the subject of the image, thanks to Photoshop!).

Effects of the Media and Instagram on PBI

In a 2005 study of the effects of idealized media images on college women, researcher Renee Engeln-Maddox found that being presented with just three advertisements featuring highly attractive female models caused many of the women to compare themselves and their own bodies to the idealized images they viewed.

Even when participants used the critical processing technique of counterarguing, or generating counterarguments against unhealthy social comparison, they still experienced appearance-related dissatisfaction and internalization of the “thin ideal.”

In 2008, a meta-analysis (an analysis of the results from many studies) confirmed the relationship between mass media images and the internalization of an unhealthy thin ideal in women, along with dissatisfaction with one’s body (Grabe, Ward, & Hyde).

Further, not only do advertisements and targeted messages to consumers affect our body image, but the images we see of our friends, colleagues, and acquaintances on social media also make an impact. In 2013, researchers Marika Tiggemann and Amy Slater connected Facebook use to higher body image concerns in 13 to 15-year old girls.

The same study showed a significant relationship between internalization of the thin ideal and time spent on the internet. Later, researchers Fardouly, Diedrichs, Vartanian, and Halliwell (2015) found another link between social media use and both mood and body concerns in women; specifically, spending just 10 minutes browsing Facebook instead of a neutral control website resulted in a more negative food and more facial, hair, and skin-related concerns.

(Video) Active Play - 2 to 3 years

Although the most significant effects of media on body image and self-esteem have been observed in women, men are certainly not immune to the images of the “ideal” body. Men who viewed advertisements featuring male models or actors with the muscular ideal body type were more likely to feel negative about their own bodies, and more likely to feel dissatisfied with their own muscles (Hargreaves & Tiggemann, 2009).

Instagram, in particular, seems to have a huge impact on how we see ourselves and our bodies. Researchers Brown and Tiggemann (yes, the same Tiggemann from the earlier studies!) investigated the relationship between viewing Instagram pictures and mood and body dissatisfaction in young women (2016).

Participants were shown one of three sets of images: (1) images of celebrities on Instagram, (2) images of unknown, equally attractive peers on Instagram, or (3) a set of control travel images from Instagram.

Unsurprisingly, those who viewed the celebrity and peer images experienced a more negative mood and greater dissatisfaction with their bodies than those who viewed the travel images. This effect was mediated, or explained by, appearance comparisons.

Don’t feel the need to give up your Instagram account just yet, though—later research qualified this finding by exploring how the ways in which we use social networking sites affect our body satisfaction and body concerns.

Young women who engaged in greater appearance-focused activity on Facebook and Instagram reported greater dissatisfaction with their bodies and a more entrenched internalization of the thin ideal than those who engaged in mostly non-appearance-focused social networking activity (Cohen, Newton-John, & Slater, 2017).

This finding tells us that it is not simply the use of social media that leads to decreased satisfaction with our own bodies, but specifically appearance-related social media usage. When we compare ourselves to the “ideal” bodies we see on Instagram, we generally experience greater dissatisfaction with ourselves.

How to Feel Good About Your Body

2+ Positive Body Image Activities & Worksheets (2)Luckily, research has also found effective ways to negate or reduce the ill effects of media on body image.

The biggest thing you can do to feel better about your body is to work on stopping the social comparison process in its tracks. It can be frighteningly easy to compare ourselves to the bodies we see every day, in magazines, on billboards, on television, and now on social media. It’s a small step from looking at and admiring images of “ideal” bodies and thinking, “Why don’t I look like that?” or “That model is so much thinner than me.”

Although easy to do, avoiding these social comparisons may be the best way to boost your own body satisfaction (Posavac, Posavac, & Weigel, 2001).

How to be Happy with Your Body When You’re Overweight

Avoiding social comparisons is an especially good practice for those who are overweight since there is such a lack of representation of larger body types in the media.

If you’re overweight, you’re certainly not alone in your body concerns. In 2016, nearly 2 billion adults were overweight, or 39% of the world’s adult population (World Health Organization, 2018)!

While there are certain health risks associated with being overweight, and even more risks that accompany obesity, that’s no reason to avoid working towards a healthy self-esteem at any size. Besides, it’s possible to work on becoming more physically and mentally healthy at the same time.

The biggest problem many overweight people face when trying to get healthier, physically and/or mentally, is the vicious cycle:

  1. They gain weight.
  2. They feel bad about gaining weight
  3. They may initially try to get healthy, but eventually, have a setback and use food or inactivity as comfort.
  4. They gain more weight.
  5. They feel even worse about their weight.
  6. They are even less motivated to get healthy and more prone to partaking in unhealthy comforts.
  7. Repeat.

Similarly, when some people attempt to work on improving their mental health, they encounter a similar cycle:

  1. They feel bad about themselves or experience negative symptoms.
  2. They feel even worse since they feel like they don’t have control over their own mind.
  3. They have a setback or withdraw into even more negative feelings about themselves.
  4. Repeat.

And so the cycle continues!

The only surefire way to start getting healthier, physically or mentally, is to break that cycle. And, although this might seem counterintuitive, it actually seems easier for people to first improve their body image, then move on to improving their physical health. This is because when we improve our own body image, we can stop the cycle before it even gets to step 2 (feeling bad about yourself).

Recently published research confirms that having a positive body image can help you to be healthier (or at least to gain less weight in the future); a long-term study found that on average those with the lowest body satisfaction gained over twice the number of Body Mass Index (or BMI) units as the girls with the highest body satisfaction (Loth, Watts, van den Berg, & Neumark-Sztainer, 2015).

When we have a negative body image and we gain weight, we might think, “I’m so fat. I’m lazy and useless and I don’t deserve attention and happiness.”

When we have a positive body image and we gain weight, we are more likely to think something like, “Oops! I’ve gained some weight. I better work on making healthier meals and getting out more.”

It may be more difficult to cultivate self-love and acceptance when you are overweight, but you can do it if you put your mind to it! For some ideas on how to start getting more positive about your body image, try some of the worksheets, activities, and exercises listed below.

Worksheets and Activities for Improving Your Body Image

2+ Positive Body Image Activities & Worksheets (3)

This list of activities and steps to achieving a positive body image comes from the National Eating Disorders Association (United States) provides several good suggestions to cultivating a positive relationship with your body, including:

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  • Appreciate all that your body can do.
  • Keep a top-ten list of things you like about yourself.
  • Remind yourself that “true beauty” is not simply skin-deep.
  • Look at yourself as a whole person.
  • Surround yourself with positive people.
  • Shut down those voices in your head that tell you your body is not “right” or that you are a “bad” person.
  • Wear clothes that are comfortable and that make you feel good about your body.
  • Become a critical viewer of social and media messages.
  • Do something nice for yourself.
  • Use the time and energy that you might have spent worrying about food, calories, and your weight to do something to help others (NEDA, n.d.).

In addition to general suggestions and steps you can take, there are several worksheets, handouts, and other resources you can turn to when you need some help. A few of the most popular and effective ones are listed below.

Building Body Acceptance

This resource is designed for people struggling from Body Dysmorphic Disorder, or BDD. This is a disorder in which the sufferer has an extremely negatively, and often extremely skewed, perception of their own body. However, it can be a useful tool for anyone who is working to overcome a very negative body image, especially when a fixation on a specific body part is involved.

This PDF will first describe assumptions, differentiate helpful from unhelpful assumptions, and help you or your client to identify your own unhelpful appearance assumptions.

According to this resource, assumptions are basically guidelines for how we live our lives that we learn through observation of those around us. We might not even be aware of them, but they still play a big role in our thoughts and our behavior.

Helpful assumptions are those that are realistic and flexible, based on actual evidence but able to be modified or adapted as needed. Unhelpful assumptions are assumptions that are the opposite: unrealistic or unreasonable and inflexible. For people struggling with body image issues, these are some common unhelpful appearance-related assumptions:

  • If people see the real me, then they will be repulsed.
  • If I relax my standards, then I will let myself go.
  • If I can see the problem, then everyone else must be noticing it too.
  • If people notice how awful I look, then they will be disgusted.
  • If I ignore this one blemish, then I’ll drop my standards completely.
  • If I look attractive, then people will value me.
  • If I don’t look perfect, then others will reject me.
  • If I don’t change my appearance, then I will never be happy.
  • If I don’t look beautiful, then I look awful.
  • If I don’t cover up, then people will see the real me and be horrified.

Once you have identified your own unhelpful appearance-related assumptions, the workbook moves on to adjusting these assumptions. It guides the reader through the following steps:

  1. Identify the appearance assumption you would like to adjust.
  2. Ask yourself “Where might this assumption have come from? Why is it still here?”
  3. Ask yourself “What impact does this assumption have on my life?”
  4. Ask yourself “In what ways is this assumption unreasonable, unrealistic or unhelpful?”
  5. Now, think carefully about what might be a more balanced and flexible assumption.
  6. Finally, ask yourself “What can I do to put this assumption into practice on a daily basis?”

To help you through this worksheet, there is an example completed worksheet you can reference. In the example, the assumption that the writer wants to adjust is “If I don’t look perfect, I look awful.”

To answer question 2 about the origins of the assumption, the writer notes “I was teased about my looks during high school. When I started wearing lots of make-up and spending more time on my appearance the teasing stopped. I guess that even now I am still worried that if I don’t look perfect, I will look awful and feel like I did during high school.”

If you’re interested in following along with this example, you can find it on page 6 of the PDF.

Finally, the workbook ends with some instructions and advice on following through. The reader is advised to keep the new appearance assumption handy, since the old ones can pop up out of nowhere! It’s also important to carry out any daily actions you planned and stick to it.

To see this resource for yourself or download it and apply it with your clients, click here.

Body Worksheet for Kids and Adults

This worksheet is intended for children, but it can be just as useful for adults. Completing it should help you or your client to start or continue the journey to a healthy sense of self-esteem.

In the middle of the worksheet is an outline of a person with a big red heart on the chest. This image should help you keep the point of the exercise in mind—to love and appreciate your body instead of picking out flaws or focusing on things you don’t like about it.

There are four sections to the worksheet with space to write down five things in each. The four sections are:

  1. What my body does for me
  2. What I love about my body
  3. What’s unique about me
  4. What I can do to help it stay strong and healthy

Try to really give this exercise your full attention and engagement. The more heart you put into filling in the blanks, the greater impact it can have on your body image.

To download this worksheet and use it for yourself or with your clients, click here.

Positive Body Image & Affirmations: A Good Idea?

Many people have found affirmations to be effective for addressing or managing a wide variety of issues, and PBI is no different. Positive, healthy affirmations can help you build a better body image, enhance your self-esteem, and boost your love, compassion, and respect for yourself.

Click here to see a list of 101 affirmations to promote body positivity. The list is intended for those suffering from an eating disorder, but the affirmations are great for anyone who is struggling to feel good about their body. Some example affirmations from this list include:

  • My body deserves love.
  • I feed my body healthy nourishing food and give it healthy nourishing exercise because it deserves to be taken care of.
  • As long as I am good, kind, and hold myself with integrity, it doesn’t matter what other people think of me.
  • When I compare myself to others, I destroy myself, I don’t want to destroy myself so I’ll just continue on my journey, not worrying about other people’s journeys.
  • Just because someone looks perfect on the outside, doesn’t mean they have a perfect life. No one has a perfect life, we all struggle. That’s just what being human is.
  • I choose health and healing over diets and punishing myself.
  • Being skinny doesn’t make me good. Being fat doesn’t make me bad.
  • My body is a vessel for my awesomeness.
  • I deserve to be treated with love and respect and so do you. I choose to do and say kind things for and about myself and for and about others.

If none of these hit the spot for you, feel free to make up some of your own, personal affirmations. As long as they’re positive and rooted in the present, they’ll do!

Campaigns, Posters, & Advertisements on PBI

2+ Positive Body Image Activities & Worksheets (4)Luckily for us, organizations are starting to get in on the positive body image movement as well.

Brands like Dove (with the “Dove Campaign for Real Beauty”) and Aerie (with their #AerieREAL campaign) are jumping on the bandwagon and promoting body positivity instead of constricting the definition of beauty to a narrow standard (although with varying success).

You can read more about the social media campaigns for body positivity in this article by Bustle writer Erin McKelle.

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If you’re not much of a social media person but you’re looking for an image that can remind you to be more accepting and loving of your body, this picture can be used as a screensaver, desktop background, or even printed out and hung up on the wall as a constant reminder to cultivate more positive feelings about your body.

It’s titled “10 Steps to Positive Body Image” and includes the same 10 steps from NEDA that we listed earlier, namely:

  • Appreciate all that your body can do.
  • Keep a top-10 list of things you like about yourself—things that aren’t related to how much you weigh or what you look like.
  • Remind yourself that “true beauty” is not simply skin-deep… Beauty is a state of mind, not a state of your body.
  • Look at yourself as a whole person… choose not to focus on specific body parts.
  • Surround yourself with positive people.
  • Shut down those voices in your head that tell you your body is not “right” or that you are a “bad” person.
  • Wear clothes that are comfortable and that make you feel good about your body.
  • Become a critical viewer of social and media messages.
  • Do something nice for yourself—something that lets your body know you appreciate it.
  • Use the time and energy that you might have spent worrying about food to help others.

To download this poster for your own use, click here.

For the minimalists out there, this simple “Love Your Body” poster may be all the reminder you need to encourage a healthy respect for your body. You can find it here.

This clever poster from the Now Foundation’s Love Your Body Campaign plays on the images we usually see, and expect to see in the media, to give a more powerful message: that a woman’s worth is far more than the numbers on a scale or on measuring tape. Click here to download this poster.

Finally, this image from Spark People’s campaign has a simple but impactful quote: “There is no wrong way to have a body.” – Glenn Marla

Click here to download this image.

10 Positive Body Image Quotes & Songs

Sometimes a well-placed quote or song lyric can make all the difference between giving in to our negative self-talk and challenging it. Use the quotes and song lyrics listed below to help you silence your inner critic.

Healthy body image is not something that you’re going to learn from fashion magazines.

Erin Heatherton

I think there’s so much emphasis on body image and results and outcome, but really what you should be after is to be healthy and to feel good about yourself.

Abby Wambach

We all have something about ourselves that we’d change if we could in a perfect world… nobody’s exempted from the realities of life…

Keri Hilson

It’s hard being a girl. There are a lot of body image issues that come up and I think the best thing we can do for our kids is lead by example.

Cheryl Hines

How to get a bikini body: put a bikini on your body.

Ellen Degeneres

To me, beauty is about being comfortable in your own skin. It’s about knowing and accepting who you are.

Ellen Degeneres

Music is an incredibly subjective thing, and you may absolutely love or absolutely hate any of these songs; nonetheless, they all have a great message of loving yourself and your body, exactly as it is. If you simply can’t stand hearing one of these songs, try printing out the lyrics and putting them to your own music or just reading them to yourself.

“Beautiful” by Christina Aguilera

Notable lyrics: “You are beautiful, no matter what they say. Words can’t bring you down.”

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“Confident” by Demi Lovato

Notable lyrics: “What’s wrong with being confident?”

“Beautiful” by Eminem (content warning: strong language!)

Notable lyrics: “Don’t let ‘em say you ain’t beautiful.”

“Scars to Your Beautiful” by Alessia Cara

Notable lyrics: “There’s a hope that’s waiting for you in the dark. You should know you’re beautiful just the way you are.”

Of course, there are just a few of the many examples of songs that can help you boost your PBI. There may be some songs that seem like they have hidden messages, just for you, on loving yourself exactly as you are. As long as it makes you feel positive about yourself—turn it up and put it on repeat!

Best Books on Positive Body Image

Unsurprisingly, this popular topic has attracted many authors and readers. There are tons of books out there on cultivating a positive body image from researchers, experts, and everyday people battling their own inner critic. A few of the most popular and highly-rated books on body image are listed here:

  • Embody: Learning to Love Your Unique Body (and Quiet that Critical Voice!) by Connie Sobczak and Elizabeth Scott (Amazon)
  • Mothers, Daughters, and Body Image: Learning to Love Ourselves as We Are by Hillary L. McBride(Amazon)
  • Positive Body Image for Kids: A Strengths-Based Curriculum for Children Aged 7-11 by Ruth Macconville(Amazon)
  • The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love by Sonya Renee Taylor(Amazon)
  • Body Kindness: Transform Your Health from the Inside Out—and Never Say Diet Again by Rebecca Scritchfield(Amazon)

Further Reading: Blogs and Articles

To learn more about positive body image, there are tons of resources you can check out, including:

  • The Body Positive organization website.
  • The Body Image Movement website
  • “Body positivity is everywhere, but is it for everyone?” This USA Today article describes the movement up to 2017 and showcases some of the most influential body positive figures today.
  • “‘But I Like My Body”: Positive body image characteristics and a holistic model for young-adult women.” This article from researchers Wood-Barcalow, Tylka, and Augustus-Horvath (2010) describes a model of body positivity that can help us stay be positive and healthy about our body image.
  • “A Healthy Body Image.” This piece from PBS explains how you can encourage a more positive body image in yourself and provides good information for encouraging body positivity in your loved ones.

Relevant YouTube Videos

If you’re more of an auditory learner than a reader, not to worry! There are several helpful YouTube videos on this topic that can help you learn more about cultivating a positive body image. Three of the most popular are described below.

This video from Bustle tackles some important questions about bodies, like:

  • Is it okay to call someone fat?
  • What is the opposite of plus size?
  • What is the point of the body positive movement?

In her TEDx Maastricht Salon talk, Ira Querelle gives a passionate speech on self-esteem, body image, and the body positivity movement. At only 16 years old, Ira makes a striking impression.

In this video, you can see her discuss what body image really is, how it affects people, and how to help yourself and others feel better about their bodies.

In this TEDx Jersey City talk, actor and burlesque performer Lillian Bustle describes how the media’s portrayal of women’s bodies can have a profound impact on how women see themselves, talk about themselves, and think about themselves.

Watch the video below to see her talk about how to keep your self-esteem up, take healthy risks, and appreciate diversity in the face of a doubtful and even hostile society.

A Take-Home Message

I hope this piece has given you some valuable information and useful suggestions on how to improve your body image, but most of all I hope that this article has reminded you that you can love yourself exactly as you are. Whether you want to change your body or not, you can always start from a place of self-love and compassion.

In fact, you’ll likely find that you’re more successful if you embark on your journey towards a healthy and happy body with a healthy and happy body image already in place.

If you’re in the middle of a downward spiral of body negativity, please know that you’re not on your own, and your feelings are quite common! There are many people out there struggling with the same issues, and there are tons of places you can turn to for support and encouragement. I wish you all the best of luck in cultivating a positive body image—you can do it!

Do you have any tips or tricks for stopping negative self-talk in its tracks? What do you think of the body positive movement? Who do you turn to for support when you’re feeling down about yourself? Let us know in the comments!

We hope you enjoyed reading this article. Don’t forget to download our 3 Self Compassion Exercises for free.

References

  • Brown, Z., & Tiggemann, M. (2016). Attractive celebrity and peer images on Instagram: Effect on women’s mood and body image. Body Image, 19, 37-43.
  • Cohen, R., Newton-John, T., & Slater, A. (2017). The relationship between Facebook and Instagram appearance-focused activities and body image concerns in young women. Body Image, 23, 183-187.
  • Engeln-Maddox, R. (2005). Cognitive responses to idealized media images of women: The relationship of social comparison and critical processing to body image disturbance in college women. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 24, 1114-1138.
  • Fardouly, J., Diedrichs, P. C., Vartanian, L., & Halliwell, E. (2015). Social comparisons on social media: The impact of Facebook on young women’s body image concerns and mood. Body Image, 13, 38-45.
  • Grabe, S., Ward, L. M., & Hyde, J. S. (2008). The role of the media in body image concerns among women: A meta-analysis of experimental and correlational studies. Psychological Bulletin, 134, 460-476.
  • Halsted, E. (2016). How to have a positive body image. Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/contemporary-psychoanalysis-in-action/201602/how-have-positive-body-image
  • Loth, K. A., Watts, A. W., van den Berg, P., & Neumark-Sztainer, D. (2015). Does body satisfaction help or harm overweight teens? A 10-year longitudinal study of the relationship between body satisfaction and body mass index. Journal of Adolescent Health, 57, 559-561.
  • National Eating Disorders Association. (n.d.). 10 steps to positive body image. NEDA: Feeding Hope. Retrieved from https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/learn/general-information/ten-steps
  • National Eating Disorders Collaboration. (2017). What is body image? Australian Government Department of Health. Retrieved from http://www.nedc.com.au/body-image
  • National Eating Disorder Collaboration. (n.d.). NEDC fact sheet – Body image. Australian Government Department of Health. Retrieved from http://www.nedc.com.au/files/Resources/Body%20Image%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf
  • Tiggemann, M., & Slater, A. (2013). NetGirls: The internet, Facebook, and body image concern in adolescent girls. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 46, 630-633.
  • World Health Organization. (2018). Obesity and overweight. WHO Media Centre. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/

FAQs

What is an example of positive body image? ›

You accept your body and feel comfortable it in – even when it may not match other people's ideals. Most days you feel confident and happy with the way you look and some days you might wish you could change how you look.

What are 5 ways you can promote a positive body image? ›

5 ways to practice positive body image
  • Post positive affirmations. If you find yourself critiquing your body in front of the mirror, posting positive affirmations may help. ...
  • Look at yourself as a whole person. ...
  • Surround yourself with positive people. ...
  • Shine a light on social media. ...
  • Refocus your energy.
5 Jun 2020

What are the 2 key elements of body image? ›

Body image, in most modern definitions, involves two key elements: a mental picture of one's physical body (including size, shape, and appearance), and one's attitude toward the physical self (such as thoughts, feelings and beliefs about one's body).

What are some positive effects on body image? ›

Women with a positive body image are more likely to have good physical and mental health. Girls and women with negative thoughts and feelings about their bodies are more likely to develop certain mental health conditions, such as eating disorders and depression.

How can I make a positive image? ›

Specific steps to develop a positive self-image
  1. Take a self-image inventory.
  2. Make a list of your positive qualities.
  3. Ask significant others to describe your positive qualities.
  4. Define personal goals and objectives that are reasonable and measurable.
  5. Confront thinking distortions.
24 Nov 2020

What is body image example? ›

For example, a person may perceive themselves as overweight when they are actually underweight. 2. The way you FEEL about your body is your affective body image. This relates to the amount of satisfaction or dissatisfaction you feel about your shape, weight, and individual body parts.

How do you explain body image issues? ›

Body image refers to how people see themselves. Distorted body image (also called negative body image) refers to an unrealistic view of how someone sees their body. Like eating disorders, it is seen most commonly in women, but many men also suffer from the disorder.

What are the main influences of body image? ›

These factors include family environment, ability or disability, the attitudes of peers, social media, cultural background and more. Puberty is also a big influence.

What are 6 ways to improve body image? ›

8 Ways to Improve Body Image—Because You Deserve It
  1. Take a break from social media. ...
  2. Do something you love. ...
  3. Take a look in the mirror. ...
  4. Serve others. ...
  5. Exercise. ...
  6. Surround yourself with the right people. ...
  7. Make a change. ...
  8. Be body positive.

How can I make my body feel positive? ›

Here are some tips to feel good about your body:
  1. Think of things your body can do. Are you a fast runner? ...
  2. Think of things you like about your body. Do you have long legs? ...
  3. Eat good foods. ...
  4. Get to bed on time. ...
  5. Be active every day. ...
  6. Keep your body clean and groomed. ...
  7. Focus on healthy habits. ...
  8. Talk to a parent.

What should I do to maintain a positive body image essay? ›

Wear clothes that are comfortable and that make you feel good about your body. Work with your body, not against it. Become a critical viewer of social and media messages. Pay attention to images, slogans, or attitudes that make you feel bad about yourself or your body.

What are the 4 aspects of body image? ›

What are the four aspects of body image?
  • The way you see your body is your perceptual body image. ...
  • The way you feel about your body is your affective body image. ...
  • The way you think about your body is your cognitive body image. ...
  • The behaviours you engage in as a result of your body image are your behavioural body image.

Why is body positivity so important? ›

The importance of body positivity is linked to increased self-esteem and improved mental and physical health by reminding the individual that they are beautiful just the way they are.

What is a healthy body image? ›

Healthy body image is more than simply tolerating what you look like or “not disliking” yourself. A healthy body image means that you truly accept and like the way you look right now, and aren't trying to change your body to fit the way you think you should look.

How do we develop positive body image and enhance self-esteem? ›

Take Care of Your Body
  1. Eat healthy foods. Learn what foods are good for you, and how much is the right amount. ...
  2. Get good sleep. Learn how much sleep you need for your age. ...
  3. Be active every day. Your body needs to move to be strong, fit, and healthy. ...
  4. Keep to a healthy weight. Being a healthy weight is good for you.

What is positive effect of social media body image? ›

Positive effects of social media on body image

On the positive side, the internet can be a great tool for building self-confidence and self-esteem for people struggling with body image problems – helping them to achieve a more positive, 'healthy' view of their appearance.

What is my self-image example? ›

A positive self-image is having a good view of yourself; for example: Seeing yourself as an attractive and desirable person. Having an image of yourself as a smart and intelligent person. Seeing a happy, healthy person when you look in the mirror.

Why is positive self-image important? ›

According to the American Psychological Association, having high self-esteem is key to positive mental health and well-being. High self-esteem matters because it helps you develop coping skills, handle adversity, and put the negative into perspective.

What is a positive self-image? ›

The way a person perceives or thinks of him/herself. The way a person interprets others' perceptions (or what he thinks others think) of him/herself. The way a person would like to be (his ideal self).

What is a sentence for body image? ›

She considered herself to have ongoing problems regarding food and body image. A brief personal history was taken, that covered the participants' own eating behaviour and views regarding their own body image.

What body image means? ›

Body image refers to how an individual sees their own body and the feelings associated with this perception. Many people have concerns about their body image. These concerns often focus on weight, skin, hair, or the shape or size of a certain body part.

How does body image affect your life? ›

Higher body dissatisfaction is associated with a poorer quality of life, psychological distress and the risk of unhealthy eating behaviours and eating disorders. Conversely, body satisfaction and appreciation have been linked to better overall well-being and fewer unhealthy dieting behaviours.

How do you help students with body image issues? ›

Try to teach them about balance rather than food restriction. Avoid “fat talk” because it suggests that fatness is bad. Talk about yourself kindly and emphasize your children's non-physical achievements. An example of this is “You are smart and kind” or “You are very good at solving problems.”

How does body positivity affect mental health? ›

For instance, positive body image is linked to being more physically active, less smoking, alcohol consumption and less negative eating habits. Furthermore, positive body image is linked to higher self-esteem, resilience, overall better mood and greater life satisfaction.

How do you talk about body image? ›

When you discuss body image, you might:
  1. Set a good example. How you accept your body and talk about others' bodies can have a major impact on your teen. ...
  2. Use positive language. ...
  3. Explain the effects of puberty. ...
  4. Talk about media messages. ...
  5. Monitor social media use.

How does body image affect personality? ›

Persons with negative body images, suffer from negative feelings such as depression, loneliness, low self esteem, negative perfectionism, preoccupation about losing weight.

Who is most affected by body image? ›

While body image concerns affect both boys and girls, research suggests that girls are more likely to be dissatisfied with their appearance and their weight than boys (24,25). In our survey, 46% of girls reported that their body image causes them to worry 'often' or 'always' compared to 25% of boys.

What are the 10 things to boost your self-esteem? ›

  • Be kind to yourself. The things you say to yourself are way more powerful than you might think. ...
  • Accept who you are. ...
  • Get moving and stay active. ...
  • Welcome mistakes as part of growth. ...
  • Remember to forgive yourself often. ...
  • Surround yourself with supportive people. ...
  • Focus on what you can change. ...
  • Do what makes you happy.

What are 7 ways to improve your self-esteem? ›

By: Judy Zellner, LPCC
  1. Stop comparing yourself to others. ...
  2. Stop belittling yourself. ...
  3. Use positive self-affirmations to build our self-esteem. ...
  4. Surround yourself with positive, supportive people. ...
  5. Dwell on your positive qualities. ...
  6. Give back. ...
  7. Pay attention to self-care.
27 May 2022

How do I build my self-esteem and confidence? ›

How can I build my confidence and self-esteem?
  1. Be kind to yourself add. Recognise and challenge your unkind thoughts. ...
  2. Look after yourself add. ...
  3. Focus on the positives add. ...
  4. Spend time with people add. ...
  5. Learn to assert yourself add. ...
  6. Do things you enjoy add. ...
  7. Act confident when you don't feel it add. ...
  8. Try something new add.

What is a body positive model? ›

Co-Founders Connie Sobczak and Elizabeth Scott, LCSW developed The Be Body Positive Model as a framework for addressing issues related to body image, weight, and identity that encourages people to shift their focus away from ineffective and harmful weight-loss efforts, and towards improving and sustaining positive, ...

How does body image affect self esteem? ›

Body image and self-esteem directly influence each other and a person's feelings, thoughts, and actions. If a youth doesn't like their body or a part of their body (poor body image) it is hard for them to feel good about their whole self (positive self-esteem). The reverse is also true.

How do you love and appreciate your body? ›

10 Ways to Love Your Body
  1. Listen to your body. ...
  2. Change the messages you are giving yourself. ...
  3. Throw out the bathroom scale. ...
  4. Think of your body as an instrument instead of as an ornament. ...
  5. Exercise to feel good and be healthy, not to lose weight or punish your body. ...
  6. Move with your head held high.

What is body image example? ›

For example, a person may perceive themselves as overweight when they are actually underweight. 2. The way you FEEL about your body is your affective body image. This relates to the amount of satisfaction or dissatisfaction you feel about your shape, weight, and individual body parts.

How do you maintain a positive body image? ›

Take Care of Your Body
  1. Eat healthy foods. Learn what foods are good for you, and how much is the right amount. ...
  2. Get good sleep. Learn how much sleep you need for your age. ...
  3. Be active every day. Your body needs to move to be strong, fit, and healthy. ...
  4. Keep to a healthy weight. Being a healthy weight is good for you.

What is positive body image for kids? ›

Children who have a healthy body image feel good about their bodies. They are happy with how they look, how their body moves and grows, and what their body can do. Body image is part of a child's whole self-image. Having a good body image helps kids feel confident.

What are the four types of body image? ›

What are the four aspects of body image?
  • The way you see your body is your perceptual body image. ...
  • The way you feel about your body is your affective body image. ...
  • The way you think about your body is your cognitive body image. ...
  • The behaviours you engage in as a result of your body image are your behavioural body image.

What is a healthy body image? ›

Healthy body image is more than simply tolerating what you look like or “not disliking” yourself. A healthy body image means that you truly accept and like the way you look right now, and aren't trying to change your body to fit the way you think you should look.

How do you explain body image issues? ›

Body image refers to how people see themselves. Distorted body image (also called negative body image) refers to an unrealistic view of how someone sees their body. Like eating disorders, it is seen most commonly in women, but many men also suffer from the disorder.

How do you create a positive body environment? ›

  1. Positive affirmations. ...
  2. Think healthier, not skinnier. ...
  3. Compliment others freely. ...
  4. Surround yourself with positivity. ...
  5. Focus on the things you like about yourself. ...
  6. Stop comparing yourself to others. ...
  7. Cut out negative self-talk. ...
  8. Absorb body positive messages.
28 Feb 2019

Why is body positivity so important? ›

The importance of body positivity is linked to increased self-esteem and improved mental and physical health by reminding the individual that they are beautiful just the way they are.

What is your positive image? ›

A positive self-image is having a good view of yourself; for example: Seeing yourself as an attractive and desirable person. Having an image of yourself as a smart and intelligent person. Seeing a happy, healthy person when you look in the mirror.

What are positive gestures? ›

A positive body language is a type of non-verbal communication that puts us in a position of comfort, likeability and dignity. Also known as open body language, it helps us be open and approachable to others—helping them feel at ease during interactions or exchanges.

What are positive facial expressions? ›

Positive emotions share a particular expression (e.g., the smile), which can be observed in terms of time, intensity, and context. Negative emotions (e.g., sadness) also exhibit a particular morphology of expression (e.g., corners of the mouth, eyebrows) characteristic of unhappy states.

What are 5 types of body language? ›

The many different types of nonverbal communication or body language include:
  • Facial expressions. The human face is extremely expressive, able to convey countless emotions without saying a word. ...
  • Body movement and posture. ...
  • Gestures. ...
  • Eye contact. ...
  • Touch. ...
  • Space. ...
  • Voice. ...
  • Pay attention to inconsistencies.

How teachers can help learners improve body image? ›

Teach kids to eat for energy, health and pleasure. Promote physical activity because it is fun and supports good mental and physical health. Changing children's body shapes and sizes should never be the goal. Avoid using measurements of body size (ex: scales, calipers, weight tables) as indicators of health.

How do you promote body positivity in children? ›

Here are some ways that you can teach your children to have a positive body image and develop healthy habits for life:
  1. Be a role model for your child. ...
  2. Change attitudes towards physical activity. ...
  3. Develop a healthy relationship with food. ...
  4. Celebrate your child's physical and non-physical attributes.

How can I help my child develop a positive self image? ›

Here are things parents can do to help kids feel good about themselves:
  1. Help your child learn to do things. ...
  2. When teaching kids how to do things, show and help them at first. ...
  3. Praise your child, but do it wisely. ...
  4. Be a good role model. ...
  5. Ban harsh criticism. ...
  6. Focus on strengths. ...
  7. Let kids help and give.

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