Today’s society is more visual in approach than before. People nowadays give importance to their physical attributes more than what’s in one’s personality. High beauty standards and biases towards ideal body weight and looks can produce detrimental effects not just on adults but also on children.
Faulty attitudes towards bodies of different shapes and sizes can be a major source of bullying and identity crisis in the world of adolescents.
On the other hand, the concept of a healthy body image for self and others would make your child more confident and successful in life. This practice would make your child comfortable in accepting and embracing their natural features whilst appreciating the same in others.
Why should you teach body positivity to your kids?
The concept of body positivity might seem like an insignificant issue to teach to your 5-year-old, but its crucial nature is only visible when your kids reach puberty. During puberty, they are unable to accept their bodies and appearance which sometimes makes them unsure and confused about their overall personality. They might even become susceptible to eating disorders like anorexia nervosa/bulimia nervosa or obesity.
If taught from a young age, children would gradually become comfortable with their naturally beautiful bodies and would never face any challenges regarding body image.
To deal with this effectively, we have jotted down a few tips and ways through which you can instill body positivity in your kids:
Health before weight:
Instill the significance of health before weight in children. Sometimes, children and teens get inclined towards unhealthy eating habits to fit in the body standards upheld by society. Explain to them what’s more crucial is the diet that one regularly takes in. One must not refrain from taking a balanced diet no matter what the weight is.
As a parent, the best thing someone can do is to be a good role model to their children. To promote body positivity in your kids, start with yourself, refrain from making fun of others based on their looks, weight, or color. Portray a healthy lifestyle to your children and they would grow up with the same healthy belief system.
Compliment on both your child’s physical and nonphysical features, but with age emphasize more on their abstract qualities i.e., the qualities a person possesses. Explain to them how an individual’s personality more than their external appearance can have a profound impact on other fellow humans and relationships. Congratulate your kids on their small wins wherein their innate traits helped them shine bright.
Exercise and maintain an active lifestyle:
From a young age try and add workouts and exercise to your kid’s daily routine. It's usually easy for preschoolers to join in the jam for active play, but teens generally avoid being active. But as a parent, you can make sure to fill in small workout sessions by putting your teens to work on random errands or household chores, where they have to move their bodies.
Books/series: To influence your kids more on the topic of body positivity, books and series can come in handy. Books like; I Like Myself by Karen Beaumont, Freckleface strawberry by Julianne Moore, Her body can by Katie Crenshaw, are some books that can help mold your child’s mind to embrace themselves and others as they truly are.
Body positivity right now is a crucial subject for the society we are living in. It can help add meaning to your child's lifestyle and personality. Those who appreciate themselves would surely go a long way crossing all the hurdles that life presents.
This article has been reviewed by our panel. The points, views and suggestions put forth in this article have been expressed keeping the best interests of fellow parents in mind. We hope you found the article beneficial.