Ask Questions of Yourself and Your Friends: Your Ideal Body Image

September 2, 2013

Deepen relationships by asking questions
Number Two

Ask Questions and Explore Answers:  Discover questions you may never have thought to ask yourself and share them with your friends. Come here the third Monday of each month to deepen your understanding of yourself, others, and the world.

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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
About Your Ideal Body Image

  1. Carefully consider the questions below and notice how your answers help or hinder your experience of life.
  2. Share the questions and your answers with friends and/or family members.
  3. Ask them to share their answers with you.
  4. Notice how their answers may be the same as, or different than yours.
  5. Notice how the answers both of you give have expanded your understanding of yourself and of the other person.

 

Origin of Your Ideal Body Image – For Women

  1. 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?
  2. 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?
  3. If I could change something about my body, what would I change? How do I imagine this change would impact my life?
  4. 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?
  5. 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.

  1. What three words come to mind when I hear the word “handsome”?
  2. 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?
  3. How would I define optimal male physical appearance?
  4. Do I believe society considers the way men look to be important or not important enough? Why?
  5. What or who has caused me to feel bad about my body?
  6. Who or what has caused me to feel good about my body?
  7. 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?

 

Did you enjoy this post?
Here are a some related posts from this blog, and articles from the Support4Change website:

 

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