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Visions Journal

A reminder that this article from our magazine Visions was published more than 1 year ago. It is here for reference only. Some information in it may no longer be current. It also represents the point of the view of the author only. See the author box at the bottom of the article for more about the contributor.

Body Image


PDF | Vol. 12, No. 1 (2016)

What do you think when you picture yourself in your mind or look at yourself in a mirror? It’s almost expected that we find something wrong with ourselves. In fact, many studies find that the people who are very satisfied with the way they look are a small minority. How we feel about the way we look has an enormous impact on self-esteem, behaviours, and mental health. Many writers in the issue discuss the role of the media and social pressures to look a certain way, as well as gender norms, body image, and weight. At times, rejecting thinness as an ideal body shape and celebrating bodies for what they can do is an act of radical, public defiance against unrealistic and unhealthy expectations. At other times, loving how you look may mean quietly embracing your past and present in order to live fully and nurturing your self-esteem. There are many different perspectives and experiences when it comes to body image and many different pressures and expectations, but a common message in this issue rises above: everybody has value and differences should be celebrated.


  • Editor's Message
    (Sarah Hamid-Balma)

  • Love Your Body, Love Yourself
    (Laurie Kohl)

  • Body Image, Self-Esteem and Mental Health
    (Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division)

Experiences and Perspectives

  • Bullying and a Broken Body Image: A service provider perspective
    (Michele Gardiner)

  • My Body, My Story: A fat gay man's journey of embodiment
    (Frank Colosimo)

  • Of Back Hair and Body Image: My transgender body
    (Mary Ann Saunders)

  • Coming Into Your Own Skin: A bipolar take on body image
    (Meegan Simpson-Cooke)

  • Purging My Eating Disorder: One man's real-life struggle and recovery
    (Tyson Busby)

  • Healthy Relationships with Food and Substances: The Campus Context
    (Centre for Addictions Research of BC, Canadian Mental Health Association BC Division and Jessie’s Legacy Program)

  • A Perfect Body in a Perfect World? Anorexia, cultural pressure chasing the ideal body across two continents
    (Laura Chapman)

  • I Am Enough: My journey to a life of self-love and positive body image
    (Ruby Roxx)

Alternatives and Approaches

  • Loving Your Body is a Daily Choice: The role art can play
    (Chloe Allred)

  • An Invitation to Love Our Bodies, Love Ourselves
    (Amy Pezzente)

  • You Are More Than What You Eat: Learning to trust your body to make good food decisions
    (Ali Eberhardt)


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