Better Than Self-Esteem: Gaining Self-Acceptance – Step #3: Body Image
Body-image and self-image are not the same; however, they have become entwined. Females tend to be self-conscious of body parts they don’t like and any that have been pointed out by others. Generally, males will use body improvement as a method of improving self-image and attractiveness. It is imperative to build body-image so that self-image doesn’t suffer.
Elective or cosmetic surgeries and enhancements have become common and the patients are getting younger.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could all just accept what nature gave us and believe that we are in the perfect body for this life?
If you have body-image issues, you probably say to yourself “I hate my body” or “I hate my face” but you can’t possibly hate your whole body or even your whole face.
Here is an exercise to prove that.
To keep track of your count, draw four columns in your journal, one column for each of the four point scores. Use tally marks to count. At the end, count up your tallies and see where you stand; which adjective describes the way you feel about the majority of your body parts.
Rank your body parts/functions using this scale:
1-strongly dislike, 2-dislike, 3-like, and 4-love.
|Eyes : colorshape||Vision||Ears||Hearing|
|Cheeks||Nose||Sense of Smell||Lips|
|Smile||Tongue||Sense of Taste||Teeth|
|Gums||Jaw||Chin||Sense of Touch|
|Arm Pits||Shoulders||Upper arms||Elbows|
|Digestive system||Immune system||Central Nervous System||Spine Vertebrae|
(This is obviously not a complete list of all the systems and organs that make up the trillions of cells in your body, but there are enough listed to work with and make the point.)
If you can’t find anything or only a few things on this list that you like about yourself, you may have significant body issues and should seek professional help.
Becoming aware of how many body parts and functions you actually have, and ranking them individually will help you realize that you have been over exaggerating when you say that you hate your body or face. More importantly, it will help you realize there are parts of you that you love, parts and functions that you’re grateful for, and parts that you can change.
I believe that our bodies need attention and appreciation as much as our souls do.
Be grateful for all the parts you have and for those that are functioning well. Don’t wait for a dis-order or dis-ease to occur to make you acknowledge them. If they are not functioning well, be grateful for all the years they did function perfectly. Gratitude and love are very high frequency vibrations and are very healthy for your body.
Our relationship with our bodies should be no different than our relationships with people. They both deserve validation and appreciation, and they both function better when validated and appreciated.
Based on the fascinating work of Dr. Masaru Emoto in The Hidden Messages in Water, which shows the impact of high and low vibration thoughts, words and feelings on water, it is imperative that we refrain from speaking or thinking cruel, hurtful and hateful words, to or about ourselves and our bodies, as they may have significantly negative effects on the functioning and condition of our bodies, which are seventy percent water.
I recently saw a DVD based on Gregg Braden’s book Walking Between the Worlds which demonstrated the same effects of high and low vibrations on a water droplet.
It is important to realize that when you say”I hate my body?” or any part of it, it negatively affects your energy, your health and your self-esteem in the same way it would affect anyone else you said it to.
For this reason, this exercise should definitely be done by you or anyone else you know who is dealing with any one of the many autoimmune diseases or ones with no known cause. (I looked it up and found a list of 155 autoimmune diseases. An autoimmune disease is when the body turns on or attacks itself. Why would someone’s body attack itself unless the owner was attacking it first, with destructive beliefs, thoughts and/or words?)
The way our bodies function, what they do without our intervention (or asking), is miraculous! Treat yourself as the miracle that you are!
Once you have finished assigning numbers to chart three, go over it again and determine which parts of your body that scored one or two can be changed or improved.
I was eleven years-old before my mother would allow me to shave my legs. I was very self-conscious of being hairy, even though no one ever commented about it. After I began shaving my legs, I remained self-conscious about my hairy arms. I used to call myself “monkey arms.” Despite the self-consciousness and because it didn’t seem appropriate, it wasn’t until my thirties that I gave myself permission to shave my arms. The difference this made in my self-confidence was amazingly dramatic. How I wish I had done this sooner!
My point is, don’t let society dictate what is right for you. The better you feel about yourself, the better person you will be!
So, anything you don’t like about your body that you have control over changing, do it!
Parents should be sensitive to these needs in their children. Name-calling and bullying is often based on physical features, so anything that can be removed, improved or changed to keep from drawing attention will be a big help to the developing child.
Love yourself and your body and it will love you back with perfect health and functioning. You deserve it and you are worth it!
When you’re ready, move on to Steps 4-6.
May you perceive and receive all your blessings.
With Much Love,
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