I hope everyone is OK and taking the week to catch up on uni work.
If you read my post about social media etiquette for students then hopefully you’re a bit more social media savvy (if you weren’t already – heehee).
In the run up to Eating Disorders Awareness Week from 2-8 March, I wanted to talk about self-image as I believe that how you see yourself can have an impact on your lifestyle.
What makes you think positive thoughts when it comes to your own self-image? Do you have body confidence? What about your self-esteem? Do you have a negative or positive self-image?
I know for a lot of us, scrolling mindlessly through social media and seeing seemingly ‘perfect’ images can sometimes do no good for our own self-esteem. Let’s admit it, we’ve all compared ourselves to someone at some point – a celebrity, a family member, a friend, an acquaintance, a successful business person or public figure… and the list goes on.
For some people, the library of selfies that we see on social media might actually be empowering, but what do you think?
Some research carried out in 2016 suggests that the average 16 to 25-year-old woman spends more than five hours a week taking photos of themselves. Well, I know I don’t have that sort of time in a week for taking selfies!
Why do we post selfies anyway? And of course, our ‘selfies’ only make it to our social media gallery if we think they’re ‘good enough’ – they must do us some justice, right?! But where does that validation come from? That takes me right back to my point about our own self-image!
Research shows that students with high self-esteem have a better academic performance than students with low self-esteem. So you see, having a positive self-image is important, for various reasons.
Self image is not only about appearance but how you feel about yourself, your abilities, your personality and just all around who you are.
Negative or positive, people often attach labels to us, and agree or disagree, but I believe that this affects how we see ourselves and how we’re perceived by others.
So my point is having a negative self-image can be one of the factors that could lead to an eating disorder.
How often have you heard someone comment on their own appearance? “I hate my…”, “I don’t like my…” or “my… is too…” etc.
Well, I don’t believe that anyone is perfect (no matter what we see on social media). I believe that everyone has some form of insecurity. I believe that our outward appearance doesn’t matter as much as what’s inside – character over image. Looks aren’t what make us beautiful. No two people are the same, we are all unique and shouldn’t compare ourselves to anyone.
People who have a negative self-image may feel flawed in comparison to others and more likely to suffer with low self-esteem, depression, isolation and eating disorders.
Concerned about a friend or family member? UCB can help – click here for support.
Thanks for reading and have a lovely weekend.