Counseling for Body Image: How it Helps!

Do you feel embarrassed or self-conscious about your body?

Do your negative perceptions of your body interfere with you enjoying life?

Is weight a key factor in your sense of self-worth?

Everyone has a body-image. As someone goes through and experiences life, their body image can develop positively or negatively. It is extremely easy to harshly criticize your own body, leaving many individuals hyper-focused on alleged flaws that others may not even see. While everyone doubts themselves from time to time, a poor body image interferes with your ability to enjoy life needs to be taken seriously.

A chronically negative body image can lead to body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), a mental health disorder characterized by obsessiveness over a perceived appearance flaw. Individuals with BDD may see their perceived flaws as significant and instantly noticeable, even if it’s nonexistent to others. Negative body image can also lead to the development of eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder, and other mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.

What Causes a Negative Body Image?Body Image Counseling l St. Petersburg, FL

A negative body image is formed over a lifetime and impacts women of all ages and sizes. It is also extremely common: in fact, up to 8 in 10 women are dissatisfied with their reflection, and over half of women may see a distorted image when they look in the mirror.

Several factors can contribute to the development of a negative body image in women, including:

  • Cultural norms that value women based on their thinness and perceived beauty.
  • Family, peer, and self-criticism
  • The popularity of restrictive weight-loss fads like Keto, intermittent fasting, cleanses, weight loss pills, and supplements.
  • A genetic predisposition for eating disorders
  • Social media
  • Advertising

Signs It’s Time to Seek Counseling for Your Negative Body Image

Here are some common signs of a poor body image that may indicate it’s time for you to seek counseling:

  • Avoidance of social interactions due to insecurity about your body
  • Obsession or preoccupation with your weight or appearance
  • Feelings of shame, anxiety, embarrassment, or self-consciousness about your body
  • A belief that your body is flawed compared to others
  • Negative self-talk about your body
  • Use of unhealthy methods to change your weight, such as fad dieting, fasting, vomiting/purging, and smoking

How Can Counseling Help You Form a Positive Body Image?

Unfortunately, a poor body image will not go away by itself. It can lead to unhappiness in your relationships, workplace, and many other areas of your life. In serious cases, a negative or unhealthy body image may interfere with your overall well-being on a day-to-day basis.

Luckily, counseling is a proven method to help with negative body image. An experienced mental health Anorexia Counseling l St. Pete, Florida l Therapyprofessional is a great resource to help you explore and address your negative body image and begin the journey to self-confidence. With an experienced body image counselor, you can:

  • Recognize and acknowledge your negative body image
  • Eliminate unhealthy dieting or disordered eating behavior
  • Work toward self-acceptance
  • Accept your perceived flaws
  • Implement healthy lifestyle choices that work for you
  • Set realistic goals that are sustainable
  • Grow satisfied with your body size
  • Prioritize health over thinness or other aesthetic goals
  • Learn tools to combat negative self-talk

Begin Negative Body Image Counseling in St. Petersburg, Florida

A negative body image may be consuming your life, but it doesn’t have to. At McNulty Counseling and Wellness, we have counselors trained in the area of body image issues in women who can guide you in changing your negative beliefs and behaviors. Take the initiative and get back the life you once had that wasn’t fixated on what you eat, how much exercise you get, and what you look like so you can love your body and yourself again! Treatment for body image issues can change your life for the better. Give us a call today, 727-344-9867!