There have been several conversations around body positivity, especially over the last few years. But even now, there are several tools available that can tone your body within a few clicks. Yes, it’s as simple as that, and it can provide you with a false sense of self-worth. Bollywood actress Ileana D’Cruz has openly addressed the issue and broken free from the pressure of looking a certain way. As she mentions in her Instagram post, she is “celebrating every inch, every curve” by deleting such apps.
In a latest post that has gone viral, Ileana can be seen in a red bikini, flaunting her curves like a boss!
Check out the post for yourself:
What this brings us to is the correlation between body image issues and poor mental health. The constant chase for perfection can give rise to feelings of anxiety, and can be mentally debilitating for a person.
Explaining this phenomenon in detail, Srishti Jaitley, counseling psychologist, IWill, tells HealthShots, “Our body is a vessel that abodes our mind and soul. We share an intimate relationship with this vessel, our bodies, although often unaware. Paying close attention to our bodies leads to the unfolding of traumas and unhelpful ideas, which have been impacting our body image. Our body image is how we view ourselves, which impacts how much love we offer to our bodies.”
Jaitley explains that there is a circular relationship between our body image and our psychological well-being. At a cognitive level, it impacts how we perceive our body weight, size and shape. Our body image also impacts us emotionally. A negative body image can cause various anxieties and discomforts, which lead to body-related behaviours that aren’t exactly helpful.
But why does it happen? “Our ideas about our body image stems from what have we learned and what has been fed to us by our socio-cultural context about a “GOOD body”. Our relationship with our body is a primitive one. It is the fulfillment of our bodily needs during infancy and the toddler stage that we move ahead on psycho-sexual, and psycho-social stages of development. A healthy fulfillment of these bodily needs is the bedrock in development of trust, autonomy and self worth,” adds Jaitley.
The growing up years are defined by new learnings, countless journeys of acceptance, approval and building our worth. We often seek them from the world, rather than from our own self, which creates unattainable standards of perfection and beauty.
“We need to remember how our bodies are constantly changing and they will never remain the same. This helps to build self-acceptance and deal with shame related to our ever-evolving bodies,” she adds.
In our journey towards a healthy body image, we have to embrace ourselves and create a culture of self-love, where we do not view ourselves as a mistake to be corrected. Love for our bodies should not be conditional, as they are our closest friends and allies.
“Begin by asking yourself what it means to be beautiful and to be yourself. On this emotional roller coaster of developing positive self-worth, it is important to unlearn the conditioning and patterns about IDEAL bodies, which often makes us hate our bodies. The hate develops into shame and self-pity. Every time you find yourself loathing through self pity and shame around your body image, start owning it,” says Jaitley.
You have to ask yourself what these flaws are, and who defines them. These flaws and imperfections is what makes you, and that’s all that matters!