Geneen Roth talks about how infatuated she was with her imperfections while growing up. She was constantly thinking of how much better looking she would be if she didn’t have certain features. If only she could cut out all the flaws, so just her best features would remain she could be happy. Roth tried to reach self improvement through shaming and judging herself.
She was under the impression that if she self critiqued and dieted enough, she would achieve a better body and a better life. Roth now realizes that changing an external appearance does not mean having a different life. The way to achieve an end of happiness is not through self loathing but through kindness.
We must accept the body that we have and truly love and embrace it. If you are born with a particular body type, you must love and embrace it. Trying to force your body to be a shape that it is not will only result in greater unhappiness and distress. Changing your body is only possibly if you understand what your body needs. Do not shame or deprive yourself to the point where you are scarred emotionally.
Roth tells those struggling with body image to eat when they are hungry and feel what it’s like when they are not.
A lot of people have the misconception that they are sad or depressed because of what they weigh. In reality, the heart of the problem is what you eat in the time that you are not actually hungry. People use food to cope with different emotions like boredom, grief, or rejection. Food is a way to suppress the real problem by acting as a distraction. People fall into the trap where they will claim to start making changes once they are thin.