Body neutrality is a new philosophy, the main idea of which is to evaluate the capabilities of the body rather than its appearance.
Body positivity speaks of unconditional love for your body without reference to how it looks. For many, this approach turns into a trap, an addiction, since it is difficult to show love and admiration for your body 24/7. Body neutrality, on the other hand, gives a calmer attitude towards one’s appearance.
The concept of “body neutrality” originated in 2015. Fitness instructor Anne Poirier has created a special program to help women incorporate and maintain a neutral opinion of their bodies. Without love, without hatred – just gratitude for the fact that our bodies support us every day and give us the opportunity to move and enjoy life.
The experience of recent years shows that the healthy idea of body positivity turned out to be buried under the passion of people to go to extremes. Either we hate our bodies for not meeting the standards, or we start to cultivate flaws and pride ourselves on unshaven armpits. Body neutrality helps to find harmony and tranquility.
The difference between body positivity and body neutrality
The first idea of body positivity: “I love my body, whatever it is.”
Body neutrality offers another option: “I love my body because it can do so much.” For example, bringing groceries from the store, having babies, or climbing steep mountains. This position relieves a person from any biased view. Whatever body you have, you are grateful to it and accept it without any conditions.
Body neutrality is freedom from any feelings about your body. You no longer need to love it or hate it. The body is there for you, and it is wonderful. With body neutrality, you can look in the mirror without fear of criticism from your side: too full hips and too small breasts no longer bring distress. You just have a body that can do so much, that’s what’s important.
How to master body neutrality
We recommend starting with the practice of being in the moment. For example, you like outdoor activities and try to spend a lot of time outdoors. Body neutrality will help you enjoy the walk, the sun and not think about how the body looks after walking ten kilometers in the heat.
Listen to yourself more often and try to understand what the body wants, what will make it happy and content. Only by calming the body and satisfying its needs, we can more effectively achieve our own goals.
The main benefits of body neutrality
1. An ability to live in the moment. You don’t remember how slim you were in the 10th grade and don’t dream of how beautiful you will be tomorrow when you lose weight. You just live in your body here and now and enjoy everything that happens to you. Everything that the body allows you to experience and go through.
2. The ability to oust internal criticism. Negative self-assessment is destructive to the brain. For many women, they themselves are the most terrible critics. A neutral attitude to the body helps to hush the critic’s voice: they simply have nothing to evaluate.
3. The ability to enjoy life. Seriously, when you stop thinking about your body, you get a lot of free time. You do not need to worry about when and where to get a manicure or beauty injections and how much they will cost or how to find time for shopping.
No doubt, taking care of yourself is pleasant and useful. But it is very harmful to turn pleasant rituals into an addiction: the fear of going outside without makeup or coming to a workout without depilation.
These thoughts constantly influence the subconscious, taking away a lot of psychic energy that could be spent on more pleasant things.