Improve your body image in the new year
Body image is a hot topic that means different things to different people, and a large part of its definition is influenced by the looks of the models adorning magazine covers and red carpet runways. But the perception of the body can take on a whole new meaning if you are being treated for an illness such as cancer. The disease not only threatens the physical health of patients; For many, it changes the way they thrive in their everyday environment.
Here are some ways to find new fun and a new sense of yourself in 2018:
Re-evaluate how you use social media. When searching through Facebook or Instagram, do you lock your phone feeling better or worse than when you opened it? Does following fitness coaches and swimwear models inspire you or make you feel like a failure? What you put into this experience is what you should expect, so be sure to allow only useful, powerful, and uplifting messages into your life. If you are dealing with an illness or difficult life situation, find other people sharing their stories using related hashtags. For cancer patients, hashtags like #endcancer, #cancerawareness, #cancercure or #fightcancer can be helpful.
Reset your closet. What do you see when you open your closet? Is it full of clingy clothes that set an elusive goal? Does its content make you yearn for things that once were or things that “could be”? Get rid of it. Live in the here and now. Embrace the new normal of the power it has given you. Sell clothes you didn’t “get” and then save the cash for something you can get back, like a day out with your family or supplies for an art project.
Make a list of things that will bring you happiness. Like everyone else, you may find that the phrase “get your juice” runs out and just need a quick getaway. Keep a note of the activities that bring you back. Encouraging experiences can come in a group setting, such as going to the movies, going to a farmer’s market, or joining a support group. Or it could be things you do on your own, like
Take an attitude of gratitude. Something important happens to people after they are diagnosed with cancer. This little word has the power to provoke fear more than many other circumstances in your life. It forces you to evaluate just about everything you thought you could control, which dramatically changes your view of everyday events. Simple things like shopping, talking to neighbors, or having dinner with your kids become cherished experiences.
Deciding to be present and alert can help you develop a sense of gratitude. A calm mental note to say “thank you” and “I appreciate you” can send a message of gratitude throughout the day, creating an atmosphere of appreciation. Remember how far you have come.
Give confidence to your body. Your body may not have been what it was before cancer; In fact, it could be completely different. He may have been abused by radiation, biopsies, and/or aggressive chemotherapy. It might have been through a shock that others would not have dreamed of, but that’s all there is to it. You underwent a whole series of treatments that attacked your body to save it. You built it from the brink of destruction, which could make it even stronger. This perseverance and stamina is a new badge he has earned. It is something you should be proud of and wear with honor.
Find meaning in change. This time, effort and struggle were not in vain. Get all you can from the experience. You are now part of a private club. How did this process enable you? As you grow up, what would you say to others? What would you have liked to know before starting this journey? How have your relationships changed? What new goals have you set with your new perspective? Understand and take advantage of the flexibility you have developed.
In short, don’t let cancer define you. Instead, let the strength you’ve built and the lessons you’ve learned guide you on your way forward. Respect the time and sentiment you have spent protecting yourself and your body. His sense of self cannot be compared to the people around him, because his travels take different paths. Strength is not measured by how much you weigh or how you look in your clothes. Measured by wiping away tears, connecting with yourself, rediscovering a sense of pride through design, that’s immeasurable.
Learn more about how cancer affects your self-image.