Written by Stuti Kathuria, a grade 9 student
You must have heard about the term “body positivity” one place or another, but have you ever actually dwelled about its real meaning and what it stands for? Read on to find out.
Body positivity is a communal movement created to empower plus-size individuals while also stimulating the ways of standard societal norms and giving those norms a new meaning. The movement encourages the reception of all bodies regardless of size, shape, gender, or indifferences. The main point of this movement is to abolish unrealistic body goals and build up confidence and self-esteem in all individuals. Although this movement is mainly focused on the widespread acceptance of all bodies as they are, it also promotes the regularization of body hair and other aspects that society considers to be “unacceptable” or “shameful”.
The term “body positive” emerged in 1996 when a psychoanalyst and an individual who had been through treatment for an eating disorder founded the website thebodypositive.org. This website provides useful information as well as resources on making individuals feel positive and optimistic n about their bodies rather than losing weight via unhealthy diets and crazy workout schemes.
Social media apps such as Twitter and Instagram are two of the biggest advocates of body positivity. Efforts are being made into increasing the inclusivity of people of all shapes and sizes and giving everyone a chance. This promotes diversity in body equality in all aspects and shows progressiveness in terms of discrimination on the basis of how one looks. Brands and organizations which are not keeping up with the times are being boycotted and slowly shut down.
This movement has also had an effect on the mental health of any and all individuals who struggle with low self-esteem and other issues related to how they look. The movement has made people realise that they are enough just like they are and that they are loved and needed.
There is a very general misconception that body positivity is similar to the normalization of obesity, which is rather incorrect. Being body positive does not mean giving up on your body and letting go. It means feeling good about oneself along with working hard on it to achieve realistic goals and expectations.
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