BLOG 155 DISFIGURED
What we see in the mirror can dictate our self-esteem, personality, motivation, and overall emotional well-being. Somehow what we might see isn’t different from what the world sees, but ultimately our eye’s opinion counts the most. For some, no matter the compliment, no matter the weight loss, no matter the surgery, the result of that reflection will never be enough. Being your own worst enemy is no way to live.
The human body comes in all shapes, sized and heights. In our world of social media what’s deemed as “normal” or “average” has been skewed. The following definition is lengthy but really hits the bull’s eye: “Body dysmorphic disorder, also known as dysmorphophobia, is a common affliction, affecting approximately 1.7% to 2.4% of the population, with roughly equal distribution among men and women. The disorder usually first surfaces in adolescence and is characterized not only by obsessive thinking about a flaw that is usually imagined or if present, hardly noticeable to the general population, but also characterized by compulsive checking of the perceived flaw (for example, spending lots of time in front of the mirror), engaging in behaviors to minimize the appearance of the perceived flaw (i.e., covering it up with makeup or an article of clothing), and hiding the disorder from others due to fear of social stigma” (https://www.psycom.net/eating-disorders/body-dysmorphic-disorder).
It’s interesting at the studio. Some people won’t’ work out in front of the mirrors. Some people won’t stop looking at themselves in the mirror. The trainer and wellness coach reads into this as part of their fitness journey and self-assessment. As the layers come off and the time spent in front of the mirror or group increases, I know positive vibes are starting to take place. I recently watched a movie called, “Disfigured”, and there were two take-aways from it for me. An anorexic woman tried to join a Fat Acceptance Support Group. Why?? She viewed herself as fat. The group rejected her. The second was that the leader of the Fat Acceptance group was infuriated by a member who wanted to start a walking group for everyone. The leader said that this went against everything the group stood for. Fat acceptance isn’t about trying to conform, loose weight, or getting healthy together. No, the group is about making society accept them for who they are. The “No Body Shame”campaign, which is about the acceptance of obesity and bodies of all types, sends a mixed message. Obesity isn’t healthy, bottom line. Society does still ridicule and have preconceived stereotypes towards larger people, but that shouldn’t come at a cost of being healthy.
We are our own worst critics. Part of the reason I post client’s progress online is so that they feel the love and praise for their success. Not everyone gets that support from home, relationships, or else- where. I aim to create an encouraging environment, where yes, every BODY is fit. Learning to love yourself is part of the process on your fitness journey. For some, self-care has been neglected for so long. Being healthy isn’t selfish, rather it’s the best action you can take to help others even more. Inspire through your efforts, your positive choices, and your BEST YOU!!!!
“Disfigured” (2008), by Glenn Gers.