Overcoming Physical Insecurities in the Age of Social Media
by Sue Kim
Because of social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, our so-called millennial generation, lives in a global world. We publicize everything from selfies to intricate opinions. Everything we want, we can access with our fingertips. However, this can mean that we live in an age of infinite comparisons – which city has the prettiest landscape? Which vacation spot seems more worthwhile? Who has a better body type? In the midst of all these unending comparisons, it may be difficult to love and truly make peace with our bodies because there is too much to compare with, therefore creating higher standards.
Yet, even with social media surrounding us in every part of our life, we need to remember that above all else, self-love is what drives us. We need to love ourselves to have confidence, and, after all, we all know that phrase – confidence is key.
Here are some tips that might help you if you are battling insecurities about your physical appearance:
Find your social media inspiration.
So many times in a day we’re active on social media platforms. By finding someone who regularly posts about self-confidence you can surround yourself with the positivity that you need to lead a mentally and emotionally healthy life. One of my personal favorite inspirations is Loey Lane (YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter).
Catch yourself when you’re over-criticizing yourself.
You wouldn’t allow someone else to be harshly judgmental of you, so why are inflicting negativity towards yourself? The Golden Rule goes without saying, but the inverse is important, too: treat yourself the way you want others to treat you.
Allow yourself to accept compliments.
It may be hard to accept and believe a compliment because you might make excuses as to why that person might have said it (“You’re supposed to say that, you’re my mom!” – Sound familiar?) or to believe that it was only an empty compliment. However, more likely than not, people are noticing you for your inner (and/or external) beauty and commenting on what they see. Take the compliment, and if you’re not particularly feeling it, save it for another day.
Look at yourself in the mirror.
This might sound weird, but really look at yourself, whether it’s your bare face or your whole body before you’re about to take a shower. What do you love about yourself? Is it that cute mole on the corner of your mouth that you never noticed before? Do you appreciate how nice your toes are? Take some time to fall in love with yourself. Build up a list of qualities that you like about yourself and slowly replace your criticisms with your favorite traits.
Browse your hashtags.
Hashtags revolutionized social media, and it can revolutionize the way you think too. By browsing hashtags such as #IAmFlawless or #bodypositivity on your social media platforms, you’re bound to come across people of all sizes, shapes, and backgrounds. Be inspired by those who are willing to share their confidence with you. (Other hashtags: #proudofmybody, #bodyconfidence, #bodypositive)
Although this may sound unrelated, what you say to others could have an impact on you as well. If you are sincere with your compliments, you are more likely to receive sincere compliments as well. Also, by complimenting others on their characteristics, you are setting yourself up with a positive mindset, which will benefit you when you view yourself.
Dare yourself to have courage.
Curate your social media platforms to what makes you happy, rather than what might “look good.” Remember, you are the one in control of your social media page. If you want to post that picture of you in a bikini or a make-up free selfie, go ahead. The more confident posts you have, the more your audience will notice. Who knows? You might become someone else’s social media inspiration.
Completely accepting ourselves may be one of the hardest accomplishments to achieve, but we can strive to be happy with ourselves through simple changes in action and thought. As always, beauty truly comes from within – and it’s time to bring it out.