-The Ways of the Media & What to Look For-
Media influences our body image in many different ways that may be unconscious. This issue is so apparent even Instagram is now blocking unhealthy content that promotes weight-loss and cosmetic procedures to users under the age of 18. Instagram is putting on a gray screen that users have to tap to see the content underneath it. Sometimes it won’t even come up on their feed. This issue is finally getting some recognition.
What about people who are over 18? I guess we will have to deal with this occurrence on our own. You can block accounts but not hashtags or annoying ads about something that relates to body negativity. Additionally, everyone is different and perceives post differently.
These ads have been so apparent and are for businesses just to make money off people. They have marketing strategies to make their product more useful to the audience. “Notice who is making money off your shame.” (Reclaim Body Trust).
Knowledge of the pressure of how to look on social media is huge. Knowing that people are posting the best versions of themselves and even editing their pictures, goes a long way. Knowing that your worth isn’t dependent on the amount of likes you get or comments of the fire emoji. Think about why we all need to be validated by these messages?
As you know, you have so much more to offer than what is on your Instagram and the amount of likes you get. And so do your friends. Focusing on those other things that you can offer with your friend group could start a positive revolution.
All in all, don’t let those companies, celebrities, and posts on social media get under your skin. Mentally, try to challenge the posts and don’t agree with them. Together, let’s create a change in the social media atmosphere and make it more body positive and REAL!
Check out the page “Awesome accounts to follow on social media.”
Write on a sticky note or piece of paper, three things you appreciate about yourself that is external, my sense of humor for example. For even bigger activity, write something about your friends on your bathroom mirror for your roommates or dormmates to see. Something you like about their personality, how they are a good friend, etc. For an even bigger activity, write something different everyday!
Do something (it’s up to you) to decrease the pressure of social media on body image. Whether that be posting a picture of your natural self. Like the one and only picture you take and posting it #realpost. Or commenting on your friends post with a non-body related comment. Or unfollow any account that may promote negative content about body image.