Yes, it's hard… if it was hard to stay positive during what we used to call “normal” life, this new way of adapting can bring more challenges... whether we are overwhelmed with tasks or with empty spaces... it's hard.
Moving less or in different ways
Eating in different ways (out of choice, reaction and/or food insecurity)
a new boom of exercise video channels
a constant exposure to a multimillion publicity selling strategy that tells us we need to improve ourselves in some way in order to sell us something, especially now that we seem to be sticking to the essential only... how dare we?
These are just some of the triggers that can bring us down a spiral of self-doubt and extra criticism towards our bodies, and I say extra because we tend to be hard on ourselves in this way most of the time, because this is what we have been taught.
So what do we do? I don’t have the solution, but I have some ideas we can try together, maybe sometimes more successfully than others, but worth a shot:
- First, give yourself a break. If today you're not feeling amazing, it's okay... don't punish yourself on top of it
by calling yourself any names or denying the crappy sensation. It's okay to not be
happy and positive all the time. It will pass, so don't beat yourself up.
- Take a pause, a deep breath, a small walk, and remind yourself your body is keeping
you alive. If you are healthy during a global pandemic... isn't that more than amazing?! Don't
be mean to yourself, other people's bodies are NEVER up for public opinion. Jokes
about gaining weight during COVID-19 times are not funny. They are not jokes, they
- Practice paying attention to what your body needs in terms of movement and rest. Focus on what makes you feel good. Do more of what
makes you happy.
- Stop the comparisons... yes, stop it now. No bodies are meant to look exactly the same, and they won't. Hey, and many of the
Instagram pics we see don’t even look like the person IN the photo anyway. So, just
don´t do it.
- Reach out! Talk to a close friend, vent. If your struggle feels like too much to carry it alone,
it probably is. NO SHAME! You are not shallow or selfish for struggling with body
image issues, trust me on this one... more people than you imagine are going through
this, and it's so much better to find support and to talk about it. (If you feel better
talking to a stranger check out resources at bottom of page).
- As cheesy at it sounds, talk to yourself as you would to someone you love. Think of someone you love, would you love them less if their body looked any different? No right? Because you love who they are... not their pant size... so, remember that, even if it’s hard to reflect it back to yourself.
There's no right way to go through this situation we are living. It's okay to have ups and downs, and if we have learned something is that nothing lasts forever... so try to practice being kind to yourself and your body that is keeping you here.
- UNC Counseling Center
- Psychological Services Clinic at UNC
- UNC Counseling Crisis Line: 970-351-2496
- NEDA Helpline: (800) 931-2237
*For crisis situations, text "NEDA" to 741741 to be connected with a trained volunteer at Crisis Text Line (This is great, a personal recommendation if texting is more comfortable for you)