Ask yourself this: Why do you want to look different?
Most likely, it’s because you want other people to like you, and you believe looking a certain way will make you more loved and accepted.
“We are sold this idea that looking a certain way will bring us approval, affection, love, respect, value, etc.,” Kara Loewentheil, J.D., a former women’s rights lawyer who now coaches women dealing with insecurity, tells mbg. “But the whole thing is a myth. Looking a certain way will not make you happy. Look at all the literal fashion models with drug addictions and eating disorders!”
Before you can learn to love your body, you need to relinquish the idea that you wouldn’t feel sad, lonely, or rejected if you looked different. “Even Beyoncé got cheated on! Human life involves beauty and suffering for everyone,” Loewentheil explains. “The more you can really internalize this idea, the less attached you will be to meeting certain conventional beauty norms because you will understand that they will never deliver what you want. Peace and happiness have to come from inside.”
This isn’t to say that size discrimination, racism, and ableism aren’t real—yes, unfortunately, these physical factors do affect how people treat us. But bending over backward to meet their impossible ideals will not help you feel better about yourself. Is your body the problem, or are the ideals the problem? Instead of continuing to try to fit into a system that pits you against your own body, what if you adopted a new way of thinking that designates you as valuable exactly the way you are? What if you stopped trying to appease others at your own expense?
Try repeating this to yourself: I deserve to be loved and accepted in this exact body. I will no longer entertain people or messages that tell me otherwise