Is body confidence important?

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Is body confidence important?

I was re-reading Kevin's story about being a professional life model and remembering how I used to model for O Level (yes, that long ago!) and A Level art classes to boost my income as a student. I actually rather enjoyed it, although it's much harder than it looks to hold a pose for a long time. I did get to keep my clothes on, though, and I'm not sure whether I would have had the confidence to do it without. As well as being awesome and inspiring, Kevin's work challenges us about disability and body image, which can only be a good thing in my view.

The 'body beautiful' is an interesting - and dangerous - social construct. The media presents a particular range of body shapes and sizes as 'acceptable' and it's sad to see younger and younger children worrying about whether they conform to this. And yet, despite knowing and believing this, there aren't many people I would feel comfortable stripping off on a beach in front of. It's probably true that we're all at the mercy of media-generated ideals, whether we think we should be or not.

It seems to me that the media has a key role to play in breaking the cycle of people feeling they're not good enough, and encouraging body confidence whatever size or shape we are. I wonder whether it will ever happen...

I think about this quite

I think about this quite often, because my teenagers are in the thick of the 'body-beautiful' obsession that seems to have gripped this generation of young people. I'm sure they spend more time worrying about how they look – and taking selfies to preserve the moment – than just enjoying their youth, but perhaps it has forever been thus.

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