How many times in your life have you been given a label you did not want? How often has that label referred to what your body looks like? Have you been called fat? Perhaps skinny? Maybe even ugly? Body shamers exist and unfortunately, many of us have been affected by the labels they project on us. It is often so difficult to believe that there is even the slightest possibility that you could be beautiful in your own way, regardless of what body shamers may tell you.
It is definitely not easy to believe it when those body shamers make a point of bringing you down. Sometimes we need to take a step back and realise that others bring us down because they lack something within themselves. We spoke to Devina Kaur—an inspirational speaker, radio host, producer and author of the self-help book Too Fat Too Loud Too Ambitious to understand what are the best ways to deal with body shamers and she had some great tips for us. She started by saying,
We need to take back our power and realise that our true beauty comes from within ourselves. When we know that we can rest assured that we will love ourselves no matter what others opinions of us might be. Often, the body-shaming and criticism come from those who are closest to you—perhaps your friends, colleagues or even your community. Body shaming has a way of negatively affecting your self-esteem and has been known to lead to mental and eating disorders.
Personally, as someone who is in recovery from bulimia and emotional and mental issues, I know too well the consequence of being shamed for my size. And it takes a lot of inner strength to face the ongoing body shaming.
Social Media’s Impact
The existence of social media and the online world has only allowed online bullying and body shamers to thrive. Strangers ‘offer; criticism in the comment section about your appearance after you’ve posted a picture or perhaps even a snide comment in reply to clothes comments. Body shamers often attack and criticise more than just our physical body size but may poke fun at factors that make you who you are. This criticism may attack characteristics such as your height, skin colour or any physical aspect of yourself that is a representation of your authenticity.
Usually, this constant flow of criticism deeply impacts our mental and emotional states. Therefore, it is important to understand how to deal with body shamers without having to stoop to their level of bullying. Being able to rise above the hate allows you to develop a sense of compassion which gives you the strength to forgive others and still love them regardless of their wrongdoings. Here are 3 crucial tips by Devina Kaur that will help you deal with body shamers:
1. Love Is Always The Answer
It’s easy to get caught up in negative opinions, views and perceptions about ourselves. Realise your inner power and rise above what the world says or thinks about you. Fight the hate you conceive with love. Show compassion to those who don’t find value in themselves and feel the need to bring others down. Forgive those who have judged and criticised you and send love and light to those who need it. There is plenty of room for us all to empower each other with kindness, compassion and love.
2. Be Authentic
Who you are on the inside really matters! Your values, morals, beliefs and your good nature are what makes you an authentic being. Being authentic is your own superpower and authenticity comes from intense and continuous self-study and self-knowledge. That means knowing your good side, but also knowing your not-so-good side and then accepting all of it.
Remember, no part of you is your enemy. Once we delve into who we are and learn about ourselves, we will be able to practice radical self-acceptance. Then we can allow our true inner power to shine bright. When we practice self-acceptance, we can also accept others without judgement.
3. Shine A Bright Light
Try to live in the moment. Be mindful and allow yourself to be present at the moment with your body, mind and soul. It’s divine energy that carries within happiness that we all yearn for. Learn to let go of your insecurities, and say ‘yes’ to mindfulness that instils power, peace, compassion, forgiveness and love. We will begin to illuminate the true beauty that goes beyond the world’s expectations of who we should be. This will help inspire others around us to allow the light within them to shine too!
Join the Girl Tribe by MissMalini App to be a part of the conversation.Explore the app