September 2, 2013
Deepen relationships by asking questions
Summer is almost over, even if it is still hot where you are. When we go out we are most aware of what we look like in a bathing suit at the pool or beach, or when we are strolling down the sidewalk in shorts and a sleeveless blouse.
Get where I’m going here? That’s right, these questions are related to what is often a very uncomfortable subject, how we see our bodies.
How did the image you have of your body arise? Are you very accepting of your body’s shape, or not? The questions today can help you uncover the source of a distorted body image. On the other hand, they may help you see how you were able to prevent society’s presentation of only a certain size, namely small, as the ideal mirror against which you view yourself.
Incidentally, I first discovered some of these questions on the Real WomenProject, which promotes sculptures of women of many shapes and sizes.
Suggested Method for Exploring Questions
Origin of Your Ideal Body Image – For Women
- Who in my life has made me feel the most beautiful physically and what did they do or say? What would I say to these people today?
- Who contributed most to my feeling uneasy and dissatisfied with my body and what did they do or say? What would I say to these people today?
- If I could change something about my body, what would I change? How do I imagine this change would impact my life?
- How much time in my life have I spent thinking about changing, promising to change, wishing I could change aspects of my body? If I could have all that energy back, where would I direct it?
- What woman had the greatest impact on me growing up? How much of her influence was related to her size? How much of my appreciation of her had to do with her size or shape?
Origin of Your Ideal Body Image – For Men
Although men are less likely to be concerned about their looks than women, men, too, are influenced by society’s standards for how they “should” present themselves.
- What three words come to mind when I hear the word “handsome”?
- Who in my life has made me feel the most handsome physically and what did they do or say? What would I say to these people today?
- How would I define optimal male physical appearance?
- Do I believe society considers the way men look to be important or not important enough? Why?
- What or who has caused me to feel bad about my body?
- Who or what has caused me to feel good about my body?
- What man had the greatest impact on me growing up? How much of his influence was related to his size or physical appearance? How much of my appreciation of him had to do with his size or shape?
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