5 Tools to Help Manage Low Body Image Days

body image tips blog

Written By:


Cilla Moore

In this post, I break down some helpful tools that actually help manage low body image days. As a formal disclaimer, I have body privilege (aka, thin privilege). As I was healing from my eating disorder, it was much easier for me to heal my relationship with food and my body because I live in a socially accepted body shape and size. However, I fully recognize that this privilege is not accessible to all. As individuals in this space continue to fight for weight inclusivity, and social justice, know that you are valued and supported just as you are. 

The support that I share today is based on current research related to healing body image and emotion regulation practices as well as my personal experiences using these tools. Just like any coping skill or strategy, some may be helpful, whereas others may not be. You never know until you try! 

1. Validation + Permission 

Validating feelings is the act of not suppressing or ignoring your feelings as they come. Validating your feelings can look like: 

“I am not feeling safe in my body today. I am frustrated, angry, sad, and uncomfortable. I am allowed to feel these feelings. I do not need to push these feelings away. I welcome these feelings to come and go.”

2. Feel Your Feelings

There are many different strategies that you can use to feel your feelings and all serve a unique purpose for different situations. I always say, try each of them out and identify which ones are your favorite and stick with that! 

  • Body Scanning: A body scan is an intentional mindfulness practice to “scan” yourself from head to toe. The purpose of this practice is to bring attention to each part of your body. You may notice tension, aches, or discomfort. As you work your way from head to toe, the goal is to do your best to remain present and breathe into these uncomfortable sensations to help bring relief to your mind. There are many different mindful/meditation apps that have prompts to guide you through a body scan. 
  • Name It to Tame It: This strategy can be very helpful when it is hard to pinpoint exactly how you are feeling in the moment. When in doubt, I always turn to the Feelings Wheel to help me start to explore what the feeling(s) is. 
  • Journaling: I know, I know – journaling is recommended so often, and it’s suggested often for a reason. There are many researched benefits that come with the practice of journaling. Here are a few journal prompts to get you started:
  1. Why do I find it difficult to accept my body right now?
  2. How has society, social media, and diet culture influenced the way that I think about my body?
  3. Imagine comforting the younger you. What would you say to them in response to negative body image?
  4. Describe 5 incredible memories that you have experienced because of your body. 

3. Wear Something Comfy + Cozy

This tool can be so helpful on low body image days as it can help redirect your thoughts to something else going on around you. Discover what helps you feel comfortable and neutral! Consider putting on your favorite lounge pants like leggings or sweatpants (PJ’s welcome), a cozy crewneck, your favorite t-shirt, or an oversized cardigan. The goal here is to wear something that draws the least amount of attention to your body so that you can direct your thoughts to a different topic as you utilize your coping strategies.

4. Avoid the Scale! 

I know it can be very tempting to measure your body mass on days when your thoughts are centered around body image. Our culture and society has taught us that this is exactly how we determine health!! However, that does not mean that is helpful. If you are someone who finds themselves stepping on the scale and experiencing uncomfortable feelings, this is a sign to avoid the scale on low body image days. Instead, practice shifting your mindset to qualities that make you, YOU! 

5. Avoid Mirrors! 

Just like the urge to hop on the scale, the urge to body check in the mirror can be incredibly hurtful when your body image is already low. Check out this post here on 3 steps to break free from body checking. 

If you found this blog helpful, you will love these: 

How to Grieve Your Ideal Body

Breaking Free From the Scale

Banishing Bad Body Image Days

If you are looking for more support in your recovery journey, come join my recovery community on Instagram. Want to learn more about my journey in recovery? Check out my podcast episode with Ryann here! 

10 Self-Care Items To Use When Struggling With Body Image 

Just so you know, I do review everything I recommend. When you buy through links on this page, we may earn a commission.

Aromatherapy Diffuser

Fill your space with calming scents using an aromatherapy diffuser. Essential oils like lavender, chamomile, or eucalyptus can help create a soothing atmosphere.

Comforting Tea or Hot Cocoa

Enjoy a warm and comforting beverage. Whether it’s a calming herbal tea or a cup of hot cocoa, the act of sipping and savoring can be soothing.

Weighted Blanket

Wrap yourself in a cozy weighted blanket. The gentle pressure can provide a sense of security and promote relaxation, helping to alleviate stress.

Guided Meditation Apps

Use guided meditation apps or audio tracks to lead you through relaxation exercises. Apps like Headspace or Calm offer various sessions for stress reduction and mindfulness.

Candle Set

Light up a set of calming candles. The soft glow and subtle fragrance can create a tranquil environment, helping to shift your mood.

Journal and Pen

Take some time to journal your thoughts and feelings. Writing can be a therapeutic way to process emotions and gain clarity during challenging times.

Comfortable Loungewear

Change into comfortable and soft loungewear. Wearing clothes that make you feel cozy can contribute to a sense of comfort and relaxation.

Mindfulness Coloring Book

Engage in mindful coloring with an adult coloring book. This simple and creative activity can be a meditative way to focus your mind and alleviate stress.

Noise-Canceling Headphones

Block out external noise with noise-canceling headphones. Listen to calming music, nature sounds, or even just enjoy the quiet to create a peaceful environment.

Heatable Pillow or Neck Wrap

Use a heatable pillow or neck wrap to relax tense muscles. These items can provide comfort and relief, especially if stress has manifested physically.

Ryann Nicole

Licensed Therapist, Certified Nutritionist, and Virtual Wellness Coach

Ryann is a licensed therapist and virtual wellness coach who has assisted individuals worldwide in establishing a healthier relationship with food and their bodies.

Are You Ready to Heal Your Relationship With Food? 

I understand—it can be overwhelming to figure out where to begin. Let's simplify things and have you start right here:

Why Am I Overeating?

First Steps To Stop Binge Eating 

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Ryann is a licensed therapist and virtual wellness coach who has assisted individuals worldwide in establishing a healthier relationship with food and their bodies.