Our Body & Self Esteem image are so important, our perceptions of ‘self worth’ greatly impacts our day to day lives, our ability to feel joy, to be positive, it impacts our relationships, our productivity, successes…
Studies by The Butterfly Research Institute conducted a National Survey and found that more than 1 in 3 Australians are unhappy with the way they look. The survey shows that more than half of Australians rarely speak positively about themselves.
Key findings from the survey include:
- Over 40% of people are dissatisfied with their appearance.
- An overwhelming 73% of people wished they could change the way they look.
- 66.6% of people remember being bullied or teased for their appearance at some stage in their life.
- 41.5% of people most of the time or always compare themselves to others on social media
- 53.6% of people rarely or never speak positively about their appearance.
At some point in our lives, I think we have all experienced a hurtful, or careless remark or an act of cruelty by another, that more than likely set in motion a self beliefs. It is so important to recognise our self value system and be open to undertake a shift in our beliefs when these beliefs are not serving us well.
I recall a time in my life, just having finished my High School Certificate and was due to start my Fashion Technology and Design Diploma in the new year. I wanted to improve my office skills so I did a short TAFE course before they year ended, I thought it may come in handy for additional employment opportunities to support my future studies.
One day the course instructor asked us to, ‘write down 10 things you like about yourself’ . Seems simple enough, right? Well I picked up my pen and went to write but I was stumped! I could not think of anything… I spent 15 minutes staring at that blank page, The only positive thing I believed about myself was that I am a good listener.
To this day, I remember the train ride home that day, turning the experience over in my mind. With each stop closer to home I questioned, why was that so hard for me to write just 10 things I like about myself? I know, if I was asked to make a list of things I don’t like about myself that would have been much easier.
I remember with each stop closer to home, I began to feel my eyes well up as I began to slowly realise, no one ever told me how to feel good about myself. I was told many times how bad I was at things, how bad my complection was, how skinny I was, called ‘bag of bones’. I was 18 years old and I had no idea how to say something nice about myself. Huh! I learnt something very important that day about self appreciation.
This was an important realisation at the age of 18. Feeling happy with ourselves is a crucial and valuable attribute. So many of my clients are incredibly successful and accomplished in their achievements, their level of education and very skilled in their field (be it men or women). Yet regardles of one profession or achievement, are very quick to put themselves down, rather than be willing to express things they like and value about themselves. When I hear self criticism I am able to redirect their focus to recognise their value, their uniqueness and promote feeling great about themselves, (especially with teens).
Another recent cross-cultural study by Dove, highlighted the reality that low self esteem prevents people from fully engaging in life.” We need to help empower ourselves so that as caregivers we can bring about a change for our girls and boys in order to improve body-confidence education. We are all beautifully unique individuals, it’s time to begin celebrating that.
As children and then adolescents, then adults we set thought patterns in place with each life experience we have and the people who impacted our lives (both good and some not). Over the years, these patterns become beliefs – some good, some not so good. If these beliefs set as a negative about ourselves, they can have a crippling impact on our life. Shifting these belief requires an investment into ourselves, remember a habit is only something you do repeatedly, so become awaye and begin to change that habit. Begin adapting positive practices (for example; every morning before you get out of bed, have some form of appreciation for yourself). Say or think at least 3 things you like about yourself
As a Personal Stylist I am so fortunate to witness these shifts with clients. It’s the joy in their eyes and facial expressions I see first. Then this shift grows, like dropping a pebble into the water, the first circle is small but each ripple is bigger and wider and each client has this wonderful realisation of feeling their value. It is truly wonderful to be a part of and incredibly heartwarming.
Wikipedia explains that the Western understanding of Self Realisation may be defined as the “fulfilment by oneself of the possibilities of one’s character or personality”.
- Use positive affirmations correctly.
- Identify your competencies and develop them.
- Learn to accept compliments.
- Eliminate self-criticism and introduce self-compassion.
- Affirm your real worth.
There are many support systems in place available if your are struggling to make that shift yourself.
If I can be of any support, please feel free to contact me