4 Ways to Talk to Your Negative Body from Your Friends

You can probably imagine what the negative body discusses based on a few examples listed above. It may seem relatively harmless on the surface, unless you take a closer look at why people do it – and how it affects all parties involved.

In a 2015 analysis published in the journal Body image, Researchers have found out why people say “fat talk” refers to “self-deprecating comments made to other people about one’s weight or body”. Studies have shown that people engage in this type of negative conversation in an effort to reduce anxiety about their body – primarily through verbal “getting it out of their system”.

The problem, according to Alicia Mouz, a licensed professional consultant, LPC, is that it doesn’t work that way. He mentions that it is common to complain to others in an effort to reduce the discomfort you are feeling and to get rid of your self-judgment, but unfortunately, negative body language only reinforces those negative feelings.

“Talking negatively about your own or another person’s body, or empathizing with others who say negative things about their body, doesn’t really relieve self-judgment and discomfort – it exacerbates it,” he explained to mbg. “The things you say become stronger as you repeat them.”

Indeed, the above-mentioned studies have shown that engaging in such conversations has been associated with low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction, drive to lose weight, and much more.

To make matters worse, research has also shown that people talk to negative bodies to increase “social cohesion”, a term that describes the connections formed by people when they are attached to something – in which case there will be feelings of dissatisfaction around them. The corpse tells one friend that they feel ugly, and the other comes back that they also feel ugly.

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