Body Image Counseling in Scottsdale – Redefine What Beauty Is


What is the ideal beautiful body?  With the latest link between wafer thin models and eating disorders, it’s a question that deserves a moment of consideration. Millions of people are exposed to a barrage of skinny images of women on the cover of fashion magazines. Is it really the body image we should be striving for?


While many models are starving themselves to meet advertising expectations, many don’t believe that being underweight or anorexic is beautiful, and it certainly should not be idolized. Acting on this sentiment, Israel made a landmark decision to pass a law that requires their high fashion models to have a medical report showing that they are not malnourished. Models are now required to have a body mass index of at least 18.5.  On a 5-foot,8-inch tall model, that would be 122 pounds. All this is to promote a healthier body and beautiful ideal in their society.


Time will tell if our own government will take on our American advertising industry.  But, in the meantime, when you see those magazines, at the grocery store, ask yourself, “does the model look healthy?”  What is this publication selling: fashion, diets, exercise? If you would have to take your body to extreme levels to look like them, maybe that is not a natural or healthy look. Redefine what is beautiful and healthy for you.


Healthy Futures offers body image counseling, nutrition counseling, exercise consulting and other types of counseling for individuals, groups, couples as well as families. Contact us today for more information on our counseling.



Anchor:  “New at 10,” there’s been a lot of talk between the link between wafer thin models and eating disorders, but now one country is doing something about it.


In what’s being called a landmark decision, Israel has a new law requiring models to have a medical report showing that they’re not malnourished. They have to have a body mass index of at least 18.5, which is considered to be in the healthy range.


This is the first attempt by any government to tackle the fashion industry’s connection to eating disorders. The question here is, could something like this work here in the US? Would the US even consider something like that? William Pitts spoke with those in the fashion industry. Will?


William Pitts:  Surprisingly, everyone we talked to today thinks it’s a great idea. Arguably, the models here in Arizona aren’t the ones that are being targeted by this. It’s high fashion, where models are supposed to be clothes hangers.


Will:  Raise your hand if you look like this. No? You’re not alone. Lots of people want the model body, and that’s fine. It’s when you start starving yourself to look like this that there’s a problem.


Alexa Rizk:  I know that people look at these super models and they want to look like that and we understand that, but they need to understand that that’s not reality. These people are being airbrushed and there’s Photoshop.


Will:  The Ford Robert Black agency sends models around the world. Depending on the job, there can be pressure to be thin, maybe too thin.


Alexa:  They’re asked to lose weight and fit into the fashion clothes. The fashion part in New York is much more about looking like a hanger.


Will:  That’s why lawmakers in Israel passed a law banning skinny models. Too many malnourished women and others trying to be just like them.


Rachel Adato:  Beautiful is not underweight. Beautiful shouldn’t be anorexia.


Jeanne Phillips:  I think it’d be fabulous. I think we have to not promote dieting and fitness as being the beauty ideal.


Will:  Jeanne Phillips councils people with eating disorders. It’s more than just wanting to be thin but a constant barrage of skinny images doesn’t help.


Jeanne:  You go to the grocery store. What the latest diet is out there. How you can lose 30 pounds in 30 minutes. You too can look like this movie star or that movie star.


Will:  Agencies like Ford Robert Black say they have a bad rap. They’re just providing what advertisers want. That doesn’t mean they aren’t concerned about their models.


Alexa:  We said, “You don’t look good. It’s not looking well like that. We have to sit down with those people and have a serious conversation about your health.”


Will:  The magic number in Israel is a body mass index number of 18.5. For me at 6’3″, that’s only 150 pounds. For a woman about 5’8″, that’s 122 pounds. In the information center, William Pitts, “12 News.”

What Do Healthy Eating Habits Look Like for You?


The best practice for healthy eating is being consistent with your eating every day.  But, before you can practice healthy eating, you need to know what that looks like for you.  It may be different from one person to the next.  So, ask yourself some questions.


Is healthy eating about eating a variety of food groups?  Is it eating three square meals a day or eating six smaller meals a day?  When in the day do you eat?  Once you determine what healthy eating is for you, be consistent with it every day.  Eat right, your way, every day and you will have a healthier life.


For more tips on a healthy eating lifestyle, contact us a Healthy Futures in Scottsdale today at (480) 451-8500.



Hi. My name is Kim Guenther, Registered Dietitian for the Healthy Futures program in Scottsdale. National Nutrition Month is in March and this year’s slogan is, “Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day.”


What does eating right look like for you? Does it mean eating a variety of the food groups? Does it mean eating three times a day or six times a day? Really being able to identify your way of eating is by far the best practice that you can make for healthy living. Then being able to do that on a consistent basis – being able to do that every day.


Read more about eating right, your way, every day.

Eating Disorder Programs Using Exercise Therapy in Scottsdale


Healthy Futures started offering individualized movement and exercise therapy and eating disorder programs in January of 2015. Their exercise wellness plans are designed specifically for people that are struggling with an eating disorder.


This addition to the Healthy Futures overall wellness program offers onsite sessions working with exercise consultants that understand eating disorders and the importance of proper exercise and movement. Taking a holistic approach, this exercise and movement program is for the mind as well as the body’s physical well‑being and is based on each person’s individual needs and goals.
At Healthy Futures, we want to help you with your recovery and wellness in every way possible.


Learn more about this exercise program and all of our exercise programs at Healthy Futures or call us today (480) 451-8500.



Kelley Aungst:  Hi, I’m Kelley Aungst, and I’m an exercise consultant here at Healthy Futures. I’m so happy and excited to announce that, come January, we are going to be offering an individual movement exercise therapy.


As an added component to the overall wellness for our patients, we thought it would be a great addition to our existing program. If you’ve been thinking about adding motion and movement to your new year, or joining a gym, or even hiring a personal trainer, you may want to consider our one‑on‑one exercise and movement sessions.


Some of the benefits for that for you might be convenience, because I’ll be bringing exercise equipment here so that you can do your sessions right onsite. You’d be working with somebody that has an understanding of eating disorders and the importance of proper exercise and movement to go along with that.


Not everybody has an understanding of that, so this would be an important component to your overall wellness and recovery here at Healthy Futures. I’ll use a holistic approach, body and mind, for your physical well‑being, and you’ll get an individual program design based on your needs and personal goals, and not someone else’s.


If this sounds like something that you might be interested in for the new year, give us a call, schedule a consultation, and let’s get you moving.

See it, Feel it But Don’t Scratch it!

Do we need a behavior attached to all of our distressful feelings? Ask yourself, how do you behave when you are feeling anxious? Some people snack, or restrict food, or fidget, or pick, or pace. We are all different and we all have a different way of behaving in the face of anxiety. Some of those behavioral responses are healthier than others. Dialectical Behavior Therapy is an eating disorder treatment involving techniques that may help when you’re feeling anxious.


If you struggle with unhealthy behaviors, try a different technique. Imagine you have an itch. Feeling that itch now? Now, don’t scratch it! Instead, pause and think about it. Observe and describe the itch. You may describe it as sharp, prickly, hot, pulsing and red. Soon enough, that feeling will dull, expand, cool and become blue. Do you still feel like you need to scratch? Probably not.


“Don’t scratch the itch” is a Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) exercise you can practice next time you are anxious. Pause and describe what you are feeling. Soon, you should feel more at ease.


For more information on DBT skills, please contact Healthy Futures (480) 451-8500.



Kim Lipsman (Kim DiRe’):  Hi, my name is Kim Lipsman. I’m a mental health therapist that uses Dialectical Behavioral Therapy with my clients. DBT is what we call it.


One of the skills for emotion regulation that we use in DBT is to observe and describe. It’s one of the most helpful things for lowering your anxiety level or lowering any kind of feelings that you have that feel distressful.


It also creates a pause that shows that we don’t have to have a feeling, and then a behavior attached to it. I call this skill “Don’t Scratch the Itch.” Anyway, now that I’m talking about itching, do you notice anywhere in your body that you have an itch? Don’t scratch it!


I’m going to use it to help you. Now that I’m talking about it, I’ve got one. It’s on my lower leg. Yes, I can feel it, and so I’m going to describe it. If you can, with an itch that you have ‑‑ don’t scratch it! You’ll be tempted to ‑‑ is just describe it.


It feels like to me ‑‑ I’m going to describe mine ‑‑ as if it was the tip of a pencil right on my lower leg and it’s starting to tingle. If I could give it a color, I would call it reddish. If I could describe it, it has a prickly pulsing sensation. As I’m noticing that I’m talking about it, it’s expanding out. On the top layer of my skin, it doesn’t go very deep.


Now, I would describe the color as being blue and cool, if I could describe it in a temperature, where before, it felt hot and red. Now that I’m describing it more to you, it’s really disappeared and I really don’t have the itch anymore to scratch. That’s just an example of what happens when we don’t behave to a feeling.


A lot of times, we don’t wait that long because a feeling can go away if we don’t behave to it. What can decrease the intensity of the feeling is just observing it, describing in color, and in temperature, and in sensation.


Why don’t you practice not scratching the itch and see if you can eliminate some of the behaviors that are not going to be very helpful for you? Enjoy practicing that.

Give Yourself a Physiological Boost – Be Kind

We all were taught as children that kindness is important, but being kind to yourself and others is more meaningful than you might think. Being kind to others and yourself releases the hormone oxytocin, which gives you a physiological boost. So something as small as a smile or holding the door for another person, or doing something larger like volunteering or supporting a friend will help you socially, emotionally, and physiologically.


We know that loneliness depletes the immune system and is not beneficial to our long-term mental health. The simple way to combat loneliness is with kindness that connects us to our self and to others in a beneficial way.


Give yourself a boost – socially, emotionally and physiologically – be kind to yourself and others! For more information on good mental health, contact Healthy Futures today.



Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. Today, I want to talk to you about kindness and what it means to you and your physiological system. Kindness releases oxytocin, the connective attachment hormone in your body. This thing that is acts of behaviors that you would do for another or even to yourself ‑‑ because I want you to think about kindness towards yourself as well ‑‑ is actually a physiological boost that we can give to ourselves.


A simple smile, hello to another, is going to be a simple act of kindness, and then there’s other bigger ones, ones where you go and you help somebody elder or hand hold somebody who’s maybe been in the hospital or really work with somebody that’s struggling with maybe a project and you want to give them support.


Any kind of act of kindness towards yourself or another is going to help you in a chemical way. This place where loneliness happens is not beneficial to our health long‑term. There’s been so many scientific proof that loneliness in this place really depletes the energy source or the immune system in our body. The remedy for that is kindness, which connects us to our self and another in a real beneficial way.


Whether you’re offering to someone a little smile or hello for their day, a hug, or doing an act of kindness, know that you are benefiting yourself in a social way, an emotional way, and also a physiological medical way.


Keep doing this act of kindness, pieces for yourself and others. I think you’ll really like it. Thank you.

Stop and Listen to Your Body to Reduce Stress

It seems like so many of us are running through life these days.  We’re busy getting from one place to another, juggling work, family and social commitments.  We don’t slow down or stop, if at all, until our heads crash on the pillow.  It’s stressful to keep up with. The good news is, finding ways to reduce stress might be simpler than you might think.


I want to encourage you to take a moment each day to listen to your body.  Pause, take a deep breath and really listen.  What is your body telling you?  Do you feel tight?  Do you feel the weight of stress on your shoulders?  Do you feel rigid or stuck?  Does it feel like you are almost holding your breath?


Sometimes a little physical movement or change is enough to release that stress in your body. What you need may be different from what someone else needs.  So, really think about what your body needs for movement and exercise.  Do you need to stretch, stand up or walk the dog?  Do you need to go to the gym or go for a bike ride?  Start with something small like a stretch and see how you feel.


Listening to your body and responding with movement, even just a simple stretch may be enough to reduce stress and change your mood for the day.


For more information on Dialectical Behavior Therapy or other stress reduction techniques, contact us at Healthy Futures today.



Jessica McCall:  Hi. I’m Jessica. I’m part of the Healthy Futures team. I wanted to talk to you today about healthy movement. I provide the movement groups here at Healthy Futures. I love to do different kinds of movement, bring some new stuff to the groups.


I wanted to talk to you today about listening to your body. You may have heard that phrase before. I wanted to talk about that, in particular. Listening to your body, being mindful of your body.


Too often, we’re literally running through life. We just go from one thing to the other. We don’t stop until maybe at the end of the day, sometimes not even then.


Taking a moment to pause and take a deep breath, and listen to your body. I want you to do it right now. What’s your body telling you? Is it a little tight, a little stressed out? Does it need a little stretch, a little move? Do you need to stand up? Maybe.


I want you to listen to it throughout the day and be more mindful. When we listen to our body, it’s more about tuning in to what’s going on. Are there emotions present?


Are there stressors in our life that are creating different connections and different messages that our body’s trying to tell us? We’re not listening very well.


Sometimes, it’s about I need to actually physically move and get my body going. Sometimes, it’s about I need to change something. There’s a rigidity in our behaviors and in our movement sometimes.


If you notice, the more stressful times in life, we are holding still. We’re holding our breath literally. We’re maybe stuck. There’s that rigidity. Sometimes, just moving physically can help move that forward, too, emotionally.


I want you to think about that mind‑body connection of physical movement. I don’t mean just exercise. Thinking about your definition of exercise and movement. Is it going to the gym? Is it running with a buddy? Is it walking the dog? Is it going rock climbing? Is it something different?


Is that your movement? Do you need something different? Do you just need to do a stretch every day? That’s something I would recommend every day to help you listen to your body more. How can you listen to it if you aren’t checking in with it?


Starting at the top. Doing some head, neck, and shoulders, and then stretching, and then go moving all the way to your toes is going to allow you to tune into your body and it give an opportunity to tell you what it needs.


If I need to work more on this area, I’m going to do that. Who knows? Wow, it might change my mood. It might change my whole day. I encourage stretching just to check in with your body and allow you to listen to it more.


Then it’s going to be able to tell you what it needs. Then it’s just going to create that overall health, which is going to be amazing and feel good. Do something every day.


There’s a lot of different…Everyone’s telling you do 30 minutes. Do every day. Do something. There’s so much out there, and it’s all generalities. You need to listen to your body to know what’s right for you, because everyone’s different.


Start with some stretching. Start with tuning in and being mindful of your body. Then find out what do you want to do with it. Have some fun with it. Try something different. Listen to it. How did it like it? Awesome.


My challenge today and this week, listen to your body. Do something movement-wise and check in, and see how it goes for the day. Thank you so much. Have a wonderful day.

Adjusting Emotional Control by Shifting Our Behavior


Emotions and behaviors go together.  Feel fear, take flight.  Feel angry, put up a fight.  This works great to regulate our emotions when our emotions are justified.  The cycle is complete and we come back to a balance. But, what do we do when we feel an emotion like fear, and there is no threat?  What if our bodies don’t know how to let go of that fear and therefore become unregulated again?  At those times, try to help balance emotional control by calling on the opposite behavior to flight.


So, instead of running away, maybe you stay put?  Maybe you try to become more familiar with your surroundings?  Or, maybe you watch a comedy and laugh really hard to force yourself into another emotion?  Now, you have regulated your body again and have worked through the fear.


Next time you are stuck with an emotion that is not justified, pause and think of what the opposite behavior would be to that emotion.  Then, act on that.  That little shift in behavior should help your emotional control and you feel better.


For more information or tips on DBT skills, coping skills or emotional health, contact the Healthy Futures team today.



Dr. Kim (Lipsman) DiRé:  Hi, my name is Kim Lipsman. Today, I’m going to talk to you about opposite emotion to action. What does that mean?


Well, we know that emotion and behavior are connected. When you’re feeling an emotion, we have a certain behavior that comes with it. For example, if you feel fearful, the action that usually goes with that is to run away. If we feel angry, the action to that, that’s connected, is to fight.


Well, sometimes that emotion is real justifiable. It really means we need to run away if a car’s coming towards us and we’re scared, or we need to really get in there and fight for ourselves and so we’re going debate or take action in order to advocate for ourselves.


Sometimes, the emotion is unjustifiable, and there really isn’t a pure threat that we can distinguish. When that happens, we want to make sure that we move to an action that’s going to be helpful for us. If we have an unjustifiable fear or emotion, then we want to move to a different behavior. If you’re feeling fearful — you’ve checked it out, there’s nothing scary around — now we want to work with that in opposite action.


Well, what’s the difference between running away, what’s the opposite of that? Ahh, staying put and maybe orienting to our surroundings, or turning on a comedy and laughing really hard, or watching a thriller movie that scares us into a different feeling or emotion.


Once we’re able to use opposite behavior to shift through an emotion that we’re feeling, then we’re able to regulate our emotions in a way that’s going to be really helpful for us.


Next time you feel something and you check out to see that it’s really not justifiable, but we want to shift it, try doing an opposite behavior and see what happens.

Learn How to Tolerate Distress with TIPP


There is a skill you can use when you are feeling distressed, extreme anxiety, sorrow, or pain.  The next time you feel in a highly emotional state, use TIPPs as a way of managing stress, to change your physiology to feel more at ease.


TIPPs is an acronym for Temperature, Intense Exercise, Pace your Breathing and Progressive Relaxation.

  • Temperature.  Physically change your temperature by holding a cold compress on your forehead.
  • Intense Exercise.  You don’t need to do too much.  A run down the street and back or 15 strong jumping jacks is enough.
  • Pace your breathing.  Slow down your breathing.  Inhale on four counts, hold four counts and exhale eight counts.
  • Progressive Relaxation.  Progressively relax all your muscles starting at your toes and moving up.


It only takes a few minutes to use TIPPs and change your physiology.  But, the benefit of feeling better and emotionally less intense can last throughout your day.  Give TIPPs a try.



Dr. Kim DiRé: Hi, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. I’m going to teach you a distress tolerance skill called TIPP. It’s an acronym; Temperature, Intense exercise, Pace your breathing, and Progressive relaxation.


The first part of this takes place when you’re in high emotional arousal, or you have that intense emotional state. We want to change your intense emotional state by shifting your physiology.


The T out of TIPP stands for Temperature. We’re going to try and change your temperature by putting a cold compress on your face or splashing your face with cold water. We want to be bent over, and we want to do it right here on the forehead.


The I in TIPP stands for Intense exercise. You don’t want to do too much, but maybe 15 jumping jacks or you run down the block and back. That will shift your physiology.


The first P in TIPP is Pacing your breathing, slowing it down. You want to do a mental count of four in slowly, four hold, and eight out, and then do it again. Four, four hold, and eight out in a slow and steady stream on your exhalation, through a dropped jaw and loosened tongue. Push the air all the way out, so the next inhalation has a place to go.


The last P in TIPP, T-I-P-P, is Progressive relaxation, relaxing your muscles slowly, starting at your toes, and moving up. I do have a progressive relaxation skill video that you can find on, if that helps you. There are other ones as well, including lying in bed. Start thinking about your toes, and then scanning up through the rest of your body, until you change your physiology by relaxing your muscles.


Next time you find yourself in a high emotional state, or high emotional arousal, and you use those four skills, you’ll find that you’ll change your physiology and start feeling better, emotionally less intense. Then you can go on with your day.


Thank you.

Practice Calming Mindfulness Exercises to Alleviate Stress

A good way to bring balance and peace to your life is to do daily mindfulness exercises.  If you are not familiar with this, take a look at a three-step summary of the mindfulness exercises that can change your life.


The first part of the exercise involves noticing your breathing.  Notice yourself coming back to it again and again.  And, rest your mind on your breath.  Feel your breath flow through your nose, expand your lungs, hold it, and let it flow back through the nose.


Second, as you rest your mind on your breath, use your imagination.  Imagine yourself breathing in pure relaxation as your breath comes into the body and into the lungs.  Let that relaxation go into your heart and spread to every cell in your body.  Let relaxation illuminate your whole being and allow yourself to be more mindful and relaxed with every breath.


Third, gradually move that awareness from within back into the room and your surroundings.  Listen to the sounds.  Smell the aromas.  Notice the taste in your mouth.  And feel the temperature and pressure points of your body on the chair, sofa or bedding.  Notice where you are in relation to your surroundings.


Practicing mindfulness exercises every day is a simple way to change your life.  It allows you to release stresses, pain or illness from your mind and body, and feel more relaxed.  Give it a try.



Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi. My name is Dr. Kim DiRe. I’m going to take you through a mindfulness exercise so you can practice and have this for use at home.


What I’d like you to do is get into a nice, comfortable place either sitting, ideally if you’re laying down. If you’re sitting, have that imaginary string that goes from the ceiling all the way down through the spine so you have this nice, gentle support.


If you can use your attention that your backbone is the center of your being and whatever you’re sitting on to allow the backbone, in your chair, your sofa, or your bed to support you. A lot of times we manage way too much and we don’t have to. You can use those two tools in order to let down and let go.


Now what I’d like you to do is just notice the breath, how it flows in, expands the lungs and flows out. You can self‑focus or shut your eyes as I continue. Your mind will wander. Go ahead and notice the breath come back to it again and again.


What we’re doing is we’re resting our mind on the breath. I’d like you to be really curious, curious about how the breath flows in through your nose, expands the lungs, and comes back out through the nose.


As you do that, your mind will wander because you’re human. You can’t get this wrong, but notice when it wanders and rest your mind on the breath. You could say to yourself, “I’m now breathing in, I’m gently holding, I’m now breathing out,” as a way to stay mindful of the breath.”


Some people count four in, four hold, and four out. Just notice and do that, and it will come back in.




Dr. Kim DiRé:  Nice. As you rest your mind on the breath what I’d like you to do is use your imagination and imagine that you’re breathing in pure relaxation as it comes in through the body, into the lungs.


That a pure relaxation goes over to the heart, and then the heart and blood take it all the way down to touch every cell, every pore, every system, and every organ of your body so that the relaxation illuminates your whole being.


Then, there’s an exchange of carbon dioxide that using your imagination I’d like you to release any stressors, any pain, any illness, any judgment. As that relieves and goes into the bloodstream and comes back up into the heart, exchanges over into the lungs.


As you release your breath, you’re breathing out all the stress of the morning, the week, and the month. You can now say to yourself, “I’m breathing in pure relaxation, allowing it to touch every cell in my body. I’m breathing out all the stress of the morning, the week, and the month.”


With each inhalation and each exhalation, you’re becoming more and more relaxed, more and more mindful of this life giving breath. One that you don’t need to think about, just do and be aware.


Nice. Good job. As you do that, just notice, become aware, allow the tools to support you, your backbone and the chair, sofa or bedding that you’re lying on. When your mind wanders, that’s the mindfulness practice, just notice.


It might be two minutes, it may be two seconds when it wanders away. When it does, come back to the breath and the steady flow of it coming in, expanding the lungs and coming out.

We’re going to tap back into the parasympathetic nervous system a little bit more by dropping our jaw and loosening our tongue so as you breathe in that pure relaxation, allow it to expand in you body and illuminate it.


As you breathe out, breathe out through the dropped jaw and loosened tongue, releasing the breath, releasing a slow and steady stream beginning, middle, and end, and releasing it all the way so the next inhalation has a place to go.


I’m now breathing in pure relaxation, allowing it to touch every cell and illuminate my body through the dropped jaw and loosened tongue I’m releasing all the stress of the morning, the week, and the month.


Go ahead and practice that and then I’ll come back in.


Dr. Kim DiRé:  Nice. Now we’ll bring awareness back into the room that you’re in or the place that you’re in. First, by listening to the sounds inside the room or outside the room or if you’re outside, around you. Just listen.


Notice the aroma that comes through your nose even if there is none. None is an aroma. Notice the taste in your mouth, even if there is none. None is a taste. Notice whatever’s at your fingertips even if it’s your other hand. Notice the texture, the temperature, the quality of the touch, and notice the pressure points of your body on the chair, sofa, or bedding that you’re lying on.


Follow that breath in, expansion and out. Nice. And again, expansion and out. With this next exhalation, go ahead and flutter open, refocus your eyes into the area that you’re in, whether it’s a room or outside.


What I’d like you to do, I’d like you to turn your chin and neck so we we can engage that brain stem. I want you to notice where you are in relationship to the four corners of the room or the things around you. I’m noticing where I am in relationship to the trees and the sounds around me, the buildings.


I want you to turn your chin and neck up, look at the ceiling. In my case, the sky. Notice where you are in relationship to the ceiling or the sky. Turning your chin and neck down at the floor, the ground below you, looking and being real curious with new kid eyes as if you’ve never been here before.


If you have a doorway, turn your chin and neck and look at the doorway. That’s your exit out. That’s a calming factor for you. Nice.


If you’re with other people, you can turn your chin and neck and notice where you are in relationship to each person in the room or the surroundings. That’s your mindfulness exercise.


If you do that once every day, just something simple like that, you’ll notice things start to change for you — your brain will, your being will, how you look at life. Also, it’s nice to relax the body, as well.


Thank you.

Are You Focusing on Fun this Summer?


Summer is celebrated as a time to soak up some sun in a bathing suit, to break out the sun dresses for those barbeques, and to get a break from the daily heat in some shorts. But, for those who have a negative body image, summertime is not a welcomed or celebrated time.  It can be a time plagued with negative thoughts about appearances, that can lead to anxiety, depression, and shame.


Don’t let that happen to you this summer!  Start with a few simple ideas to shift your thinking from something negative to something more positive.


Try to appreciate what your body can do, like waking up in the morning, carrying in the groceries, walking the dog, or giving you the good feeling of laughing with your friends.  Then, get out there and accept those invitations!  Your friends don’t care what you look like, they just want to be with you.  Focusing your attention on your friends is much more positive.


So, this summer, shift your thinking and have fun!



Sheri Robenstine:  Hi. I’m Sheri from Healthy Futures in Scottsdale, Arizona. Because it’s Arizona, I want to talk a little bit about body image and summer weather in Arizona.


With over 100 degree temperatures, that means shorts, summer dresses, and swimsuits, which, of course, if you have negative body image, that brings up a huge issue in the summertime.


A couple things that I’d like to say about improving body image and enjoying your summer is number one, when you’re having negative body image thoughts, start to appreciate your body for what it can do.


Appreciate that you woke up today, that you’re able to carry something to that party, that you’re able to walk there, that you’re able to swim. Really look at the capabilities of your body, rather than being so negative about the outside appearance of your body.


Number two, when you go to those summer events, actually be there. Be present in those summer events. When you’re invited, don’t say, “I’m not good enough to leave the house,” and stay home.


When you’re invited to Memorial Day barbecues or something that happens over Fourth of July weekend, actually go. Laugh with your friends. Feel what it’s like to be at those events.


If you feel comfortable being with friends and family, they don’t care what you’re wearing. It doesn’t matter to them if you have shorts on or a swimsuit. They just want you to be there and have fun with them.


When you tell yourself really negative things about your body, those things tend to become true. They don’t actually help you change the outer appearance of your body.


You just tell yourself negative things and your brain starts to believe them, which ends up in anxiety, depression, and shame. It doesn’t actually end up with positive body features.


We want to start doing things that are opposite when it comes to body image. When you have yourself hear negative things, tell yourself something positive. Enjoy time with friends and get your attention off of your body and on to the people that you’re around, on to the actual activity that you’re doing.


When negative body image thoughts come up, what you want to do is appreciate your body for what it actually can do. Number two, have fun at the events that you’re going to go to. Get yourself out of the house and go to those events. Bye.


Thank you so much. Enjoy your summer.


Contact Us