Steps Mental Health

Body Image Counseling

Stephanie Dutson, LPC, CHMC

Body Image Counseling

How often do you catch your reflection in a mirror, only to be flooded with criticisms and shame about the way you look? Maybe you find yourself feeling uncomfortable in your own skin and not feeling like the person you are on the outside reflects who you are on the inside. But no matter how hard you try to change, it never feels like enough. You still find harsh words to hurl at the reflection in the mirror in hopes that will make something different.

Body image perception – or in other words, the way you see and attribute meaning to your body and appearance – often shows up in shame, self-criticism, and avoidance. You feel like you are less likable or even less worthy of love because of how your body has changed over the years. You stop doing things you love or wearing things that express who you are simply because you are afraid of the judgment (by yourself or others).

What you need to know

There is not one single body type or size that is associated with better body image. Body image issues and insecurities do not discriminate and affect people of every shape, size, and demographic. In order to heal your relationship with your body, you must let go of the idea that the answer to bad body image is changing your appearance.

There is a $72 billion industry that is profiting off insecurities related to your body image and appearance. There are many large forces at play that have trained and socialized you to believe certain things about the worthiness and value of your body. Therapy to address body image issues will help you untangle these beliefs and help you understand that your value and worth have nothing to do with your body.

Will body image therapy help me?

  • Do you feel anxiety or shame when looking at your body?
  • Do you have a lot of negative self-talk about your appearance?
  • Do you avoid looking in the mirror or being in pictures?
  • Do you often leave shopping trips feeling defeated, sad, or angry?
  • Do you fear you’re “addicted” to food?
  • Are you a chronic dieter (many attempts to diet over your lifetime)?
  • Does your weight fluctuate a lot?
  • Do you compulsively exercise to make up for “bad” meals?

Because of the society and culture we have been influenced by, you most likely answered yes to at least a few of these questions. You don’t have to be limited by body shame anymore and you can start living a full and meaningful life without the worry and obsession over how you look. Schedule a free consultation to see how therapy for body image can help you.

Phone: (205) 213-2571

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