How much do you love your body?

By: Jennifer Melo

Author: Canadian Living


How much do you love your body?

By: Jennifer Melo

There are some people who exude an inner confidence that radiates from within, but there seem to be many more people who are quick to put themselves down. How much do you love your body? Take our quiz below to find out.

1. After a shower, you glance at the mirror and see your naked body in all its glory. You:
a) Examine yourself from every angle, cringe at your flabby form, and commit – yet again – to a regimen of starvation and excessive exercise.
b) Make mental notes of areas that need more exercise, and then quickly reach for a robe.
c) Smile, pirouette and blow kisses at your reflection.

2. Your cousin's wedding date is quickly approaching and you can't fit into any of your dresses because you've recently gained 10 pounds. You:
a) Squeeze into a girdle and rely on your slimming basic black dress.
b) Call your cousin and tell her you won't be going to her wedding, then hide under the covers on wedding day and stay there until it all blows over.
c) Head to the mall and buy the sexiest dress that shows off your new curves.

3. The thought of buying a bathing suit:
a) Motivates you to push harder at the gym.
b) Thrills you. You're going to look great in that itty-bitty bikini you had your eyes on.
c) Hasn't crossed your mind in years. You wear pants and long-sleeved shirts when you have to go to the beach.

4. Your best friend compliments you on your new jeans, saying they make your butt look great. You respond:
a) "Thanks. They deflect attention from my 'thunder thighs.'"
b) "Yeah, I love how they show off my toned tush; that's why I bought them!"
c) "I don't think so," tugging at your baggy shirt so it covers your rear end, secretly vowing to only wear knee-length shirts from now on.

5. Exercise is:
a) A necessary evil that often slips down on your list of priorities.
b) Pointless; you'll never get to the shape you want so why bother?
c) Good for making your great body look even greater.

6. When you walk into a party that's full of guests, you:
a) Keep your head up, stride over to a group of strangers and introduce yourself.
b) Avoid making eye contact and quietly exit when you're too uncomfortable.
c) Join a friend and try to be welcoming to new acquaintances.

7. You noticed some cellulite on the back of your thighs. You:
a) Admire your new discovery. You've always liked dimples.
b) Increase exercise, change eating habits and remind yourself to not look back there again.
c) Immediately sign up for liposuction.

Page 1 of 2 –See what your results reveal about you on page 2!

Answer key:
1. a=1, b=2, c=3
2. a=2, b=1, c=3
3. a=2, b=3, c=1
4. a=2, b=3, c=1
5. a=2, b=1, c=3
6. a=3, b=1, c=2
7. a=3, b=2, c=1

You ooze body confidence! (18-21 points)
Congratulations! You love your body and you're unbothered by unattainable standards of what society deems to be "perfect." You know that you're perfect just the way you are. Everyone should be so lucky to have as much body confidence as you. Keep loving, accepting and respecting yourself.

Give yourself a boost (11 -17 points)
You're neither overly self-critical nor overly self-confident. Although your negative and positive self-talk may be balanced, you could do more to banish the bad thoughts and glorify the good.

A 2004 study of 3,200 women from around the world commissioned by Unilever, makers of Dove soap, examined women's perspectives on beauty around the world. It revealed that only 1 per cent of Canadian women consider themselves to be "beautiful." If you think that number is too low, do your part to elevate it by giving yourself a big body-confidence boost. You've got nothing to lose and lots of confidence, strength and self-love to gain. Follow these suggestions from the June 2005 issue of Canadian Living magazine.

1. Accentuate your best features. Wearing clothes that show off your body will make you feel sexier and more confident. For example, if you have a small waist, try tucking your shirts in, or if you have nice legs, wear a short skirt.

2. Practise positive self-talk. Take two to five minutes in front of a mirror each day to list all the things you like about yourself.

3. Be active. Being active makes it easier to appreciate your body for what it can do. Try extending your usual bike ride by 10 minutes or swimming a few extra laps at the pool and see how energized you feel.

4. Forget dieting; eat healthy. Eating right helps your body feel great and in turn helps you feel great about your body.

5. Do things that make you feel good. Take time to invest in yourself, whether that means signing up for a boxing class, getting out with friends or going for a massage.

Overly self critical (7-10 points)
Stop and ask yourself why you're so self-critical. Life is too short to keep dwelling on all the things that you're not. Why not get to know all of your positive attributes and accept yourself as you are? Do something that makes you happy today and give yourself permission to speak well of – and love – yourself. Identify and stop your negative thoughts before they can damage your sense of well-being and replace them with positive thoughts. Follow the suggestions above in "Give yourself a boost" and you'll be on your way to finding a happier – and more body-confident – you.

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How much do you love your body?