Body Image, Social Media and Yoga

I do not love social media. It is great but it is also awful. I try to use it as a motivator by only following people who inspire me. Most of the time, I use it for just that. It helps me not to compare myself to others. But I realized the other day I was looking at people I found inspiring but I was sitting there running negative thoughts through my head.

Let’s back up. The only social media I use daily is Instagram and I mostly follow yoga people and others in wellness fields (and my family). Because of who I follow, my feed is filled with images of girls doing yoga. Which is fine but there is a population of people on Instagram who use it to post photos of themselves half-naked in yoga poses. I am not here to judge people, I am just reporting the facts. If that makes them feel good, who am I too care?

But the thing is it makes me feel bad. There is the whole fact of yoga is not about people doing yoga poses half-naked on Instagram but that is a post for another day. It makes me feel bad because I do not look like them. Sometimes it is because I cannot do the posture the girl is in, but most of the time it is because my body does not look like hers.

I realized the other day I have been going on social media and comparing myself to these girls. I think to myself I want to look like that. Then the other day I had this realization my body is never going to look like that. Why? Because I am never going to be taller than I am and therefore my body will never look like these girls on Instagram who have 4 inches on me.

It may sound like a simple realization or something I should have already know, but it changed the way I look at myself. I am never going to be tall. I am never going to look like those girls on Instagram. No matter how much I workout and no matter what I eat, my body is always going to look like my body. Then I realized how cool that is and I began to accept my body as it is.

I am in this body for the rest of my life and it is important to make friends with it exactly as it is. Because the body does not respond to hate or dislike, it responds to love and compassion. Above all, the body responds to acceptance. I am not saying it is easy to love yourself and accept your body but I think it is something worth trying to figure out. Your body will thank you. Also, pay attention to what you are consuming on social media because even positive things can be taken in negatively!

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