Wednesday, May 11 2016

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Don't let what you see online negatively affect what you see in the mirror

While I was writing my last post (How to fix your body image), I was listening to a podcast of an interview with a prominent fitspo Instagram personality. They post work-outs and diet tips and of course images of their own “fit” body. I’m sure a few of these types of Instagram’s come to mind, and they often have thousands if not millions of followers. The person being interviewed explained that they had a negative body image in the past, and introducing exercise and improving their diet changed this all around and now they love their body.

However, they said they still have off days about their body and it’s not all sunshine and roses. So you’re not alone! It’s good to acknowledge that even Insta-famous people with huge followings and bodies that people aspire to have their own insecurities and down days about how they look. You’re not the only one that might feel this way, and it further supports my message from the last post, having the “perfect body” you always dreamed of doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be happy with it (think: Victoria’s Secret model).

There is a flipside however, to this positive message spread by these fitspo Instagram’s, which is not all-together surprising. These fitspo Instagram personalities post photos of their incredibly toned bodies, their healthy food and their workouts. Whilst some see this as inspirational, many do not. You may follow all the models and fit people you can, in order to stay motivated and inspired, but it can actually lead to more harm than good. Self-comparison is very common in the world of Instagram and social media as a whole. These people make their bodies seem somewhat achievable, they look like that, why don’t I? So then when you look at your own body; it can lead you to harmful behaviours such as over-exercising or excessive food control.

If you feel like these bodies on your Instagram may be doing more harm than good, or are making you feel bad about yourself in anyway, just click unfollow! Whilst you can’t escape everything, you can do your best to minimise what you’re exposed to. Take away all the bikini, fitness or bodybuilding photos from your Instagram and you just might see a difference in the way you look at yourself.

Tarsh

A bit about me:

Hello! My name is Tarsh and I’m going to be doing blog posts pretty regularly from now on. I have an honours degree in psychology, and will be talking mostly about body image and related topics. The honours thesis I wrote last year was all about body image, exercise and eating so I have done quite a bit of research about all of this type of thing. I hope to cover a range of topics and issues so stay tuned and I hope you enjoy it and maybe even get something out of it.

Image sourced via Flickr Creative Commons – see it here 

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