Lifestyle

End of the self-esteem crisis? How girls are learning to love themselves with body image bible

Dr Markey hopes to illustrate there are different shades of normal

It’s all very well telling young people to love themselves, but without explaining how, their only point of reference remains their peers and Instagram as the wallpaper of their world.

Yet one psychologist has taken it upon herself to break down the images of perfection that girls are plagued with and build up their self-esteem instead.

Dr Charlotte Markey, who specialises in body image issues and related mental health concerns, has now put pen to paper for a book to reveal all of her knowledge on the subject.

[Credit: Huha Inc]

The Body Image Book for Girls: Love Yourself and Grow Up Fearless is a straight-talking guide aimed at girls, aged nine to 15, to help them focus on self-care and self-compassion.

“If we can teach the next generation to be more accepting of themselves, and of diversity, the negative influences around them could be neutralised.”

Dr Charlotte Markey

With more than two decades in the field, New Jersey-based Dr Markey has taken her expertise and translated it into a young person’s bible for developing body confidence.

Not only does the book hold a magnifying glass up to issues that can affect body image – such as puberty, social media, peer pressure, and our relationship to food – but it also explores the power of the human body and how girls can look after their mental health.

[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]
[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]

Speaking about her new title, Dr Markey said she hopes to illustrate there are different shades of normal and educate young girls on how to embrace it.

Dr Markey said: “When I found out I was having a daughter, I thought, ‘Oh wow, I’ve been talking the talk on these issues; now I have to walk the walk’.”

Chatting to HuffPost UK, she continued: “For me, I consciously don’t make a big deal if I’m making a media appearance, and I don’t want my daughter to see me trying on dresses. I don’t talk about my food choices, other than to say that diets don’t work.

“I think a shift with this generation [in how they view their bodies] is very possible. We just need to open a dialogue with them about it.”

[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]
[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]

Charlotte is realistic when it comes to social media, and wants parents and teachers to know that trying to ban it is a losing battle.

Instead, she hopes to encourage young girls to follow positive influencers online, helping them filter out the people who have a negative affect on them and their sense of self.

She concluded: “If we can teach the next generation to be more accepting of themselves, and of diversity, the negative influences around them could be neutralised.”

Sounds like the book could help us big kids too!

To grab a copy, click here: The Body Image Book for Girls: Love Yourself and Grow Up Fearless.

[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]
[Credit: Dr Charlotte Markey]

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