What is a positive body image? Generally speaking it is feeling good about the way your body looks and the way it functions. However as we age, changes occur – usually not for the better – that can affect our self-image.
Part of having a positive body image is self-acceptance – being happy with the person you see in the mirror each morning. That doesn’t mean you see yourself as perfect, but that you can be happy with yourself. Self-acceptance means you are able to make reasonable self-improvement changes over time, but for right now you are O.K. with the way you look until those changes happen.
Poor Body Image Consequences
Not liking who you are can have detrimental effects both mentally and physically. Common mental conditions such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders bring down your self-esteem and self-worth; it can get so bad sometimes that people see suicide as the only way out.
As your mental condition deteriorates, so does your physical condition. You stop exercising, eating right and eventually gain weight, which by itself can bring on medical issues such as diabetes, heart disease and hypertension … just to name a few.
The Benefits of Having a Healthy Body Image
But by accepting yourself now, you can accept changes that happen over time as part of the natural aging process. Yes, you will do what you can to slow them down, such as exercising and eating healthy, but don’t let them affect your positive outlook on life or of yourself.
When you feel good about yourself, you’ll maintain your social interaction with friends and family and not isolate yourself as many seniors do who have a poor self-images. Studies have found that connecting with other people increases longevity.
Yes you have more wrinkles than you used to and certain parts of your body may not be as firm as they once were, but who cares … you are the same person you have always been. These are your Golden Years, so why not enjoy them for as long as you can.
In the end, the decision is yours – you can be positive about yourself, both inside and out, and enjoy what years you have left to the fullest, or you can be miserable and dread each day as the sun rises. Choose the former and enjoy life.