Tag Archive | self image

Photographs of myself often trip me up!

I don’t know about you but I don’t like to look at photographs of myself.  I don’t think I am very photogenic and that photos don’t always reveal my true beauty, but they still cause a lot of self judgment.

Since April I have lost 12 pounds and 22 inches and I have been feeling thin and beautiful lately.  That is until this weekend when I was at an event and a lot of photos were taken.  In my opinion many of the photos of me were unflattering AND they ended up on Facebook!  You know the ones.  You have just put something in your mouth and someone snaps a picture.  You just looked sideways and someone snapped a picture and you end up looking like the devil’s spawn or you just looked down and your single chin has just become three.  I also hate that the camera adds 10 pounds so there goes my weight loss!

There are usually a couple of good photos out of the bunch but are they the ones you focus on, NOT for a minute.  Personally I focus on the not so good ones and start to judge myself.  This is a distortion, like the face of the woman above.  I may not even really look that bad to other people but I do to myself.

Here is the problem with that.  The negative thoughts become like a mantra in the mind and from that space we create our reality.  So in my case, if I am thinking “I look fat!”, or “my face looks old”, or ” I don’t know want other people to see these photos because they will judge  me.”, that is what I am creating.  I am putting out into the Universe that I am fat, which creates more FAT!  I am saying to the Universe that people will judge me, and guess what, someone will show up in my life to judge me.  I can be the worse self-critic and until I stop doing it there will always be someone who joins me in the pursuit.

I have had this reaction to photos of myself all of my life and here is the interesting phenomena.  When I look back on the same photos of me, I can see my beauty.  Yes, photos that I could hardly look at look beautiful in retrospect.  Some of my favorite photos are ones I couldn’t stand originally.  I have heard this same thing from other women I have talked with.

Why is it so hard to embrace all of our faces?  Why do we focus on the unflattering images instead of focusing on the ones that look good to us? I think it goes right back to the unconscious programing about how we should look.  I have been on a path of personal and spiritual development for over 25 years and yet this issues still creeps into my consciousness.  I know I am beautiful inside and out on many levels.  Subconscious programing runs deep and even the most evolved among us are thrown off by it from time to time.  It just gives us another opportunity to embrace ourselves and love ourselves more deeply.

Beauty is a Social Crisis!

“A woman’s self-image is the very foundation of her personality, and hence, she acts like the sort of person she thinks and believes she is.”

If you are a women and you have body image issues you are not alone.  I did some research to see what women were saying and was saddened by what I found.  Women around the world struggle with body image.

According to Synovate’s global survey on beauty, two thirds of all people say that beauty is primarily about non-physical attributes, yet as many as 40% would change their looks if they could.

“Synovate tackled a range of beauty issues in a global survey of over 7,000 people in nine markets – Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Korea, India, Singapore, Spain, South Africa and the United States. The survey asked people to spill their beauty secrets … how do people define beauty? Where do people from different cultures see themselves on the beauty scale? And would they want to do anything to change their looks?

The Synovate survey picked up some intriguing attitudes across cultures and across gender.

  • Nearly one in five respondents would have plastic surgery if they had the money but another 30% would do absolutely nothing differently if money were no object
  • The Spaniards desire darker skin and the Koreans strive for paler skin
  • According to our findings, fewer women are resorting to dangerous weight-control tactics. Just 16 percent of women today say they’ve taken diet pills to lose weight versus 50 percent in 1984—and the number of women who’ve starved themselves or purged to slim down has fallen by 24 and 20 percent, respectively.
  • More South African men than women would use a personal shopping / style service if they could
  • Wash’n’go Canadians spend less time in front of the mirror than people in other parts of the globe, yet are more likely than nearly everyone else to feel inadequate courtesy of beauty advertisements
  • Americans have the poorest self image when it comes to beauty with seven percent saying they are not beautiful and want to change
  • Beauty doesn’t buy you any extra kudos in Korea where 96% disagreed that beautiful people do not have to work as hard.”

According to a study by Succeed Foundation and the  University of West of England, 30 percent of women would trade at least one year of their life to achieve their ideal body weight and shape.

The research has also found that in order to achieve their ideal body weight and shape:

  • 16% would trade 1 year of their life
  • 10% would trade 2-5 years of their life
  • 2% would trade 6-10 years of their life
  • 1% would trade 21 years or more of their life

How did this happen!  And how would they decide what the ideal body weight and shape was in the first place?  It makes me want to create a Beauty Revolution.  How about you?

Glamour Magazine polled 16000 women and they found more than 40 percent of women are unhappy with their bodies, a number virtually unchanged since their first body image survey in 1984.  The good news in the survey:

” According to our findings, fewer women are resorting to dangerous weight-control tactics. Just 16 percent of women today say they’ve taken diet pills to lose weight versus 50 percent in 1984—and the number of women who’ve starved themselves or purged to slim down has fallen by 24 and 20 percent, respectively.”

The Female Body Survey found 67% of women said they would definitely or possibly have plastic surgery now or in the future to improve their bodies.
Some interesting links:
The Psychology of the Ideal Body Image  This is extremely interesting
Wow!  How sad is that? How did this happen?  Why did this happen?  What can we do to change it?
So if a women’s self image is the foundation of her personality, and there is so much distortion around beauty and body image, how does she reconcile all of this so she can be her authentic self and in her power?  Lots of questions and lots of things to ponder through this blog.   I would love to hear your thoughts on this issue.