By Danielle Johnson RDN, CDN

Self-acceptance is a decision to be made by you. If you find that your body image is negatively affecting your health, or you’re just simply tired of fighting with yourself and your body, self-acceptance may be an excellent tool for you to explore.

The idea of body acceptance is often misinterpreted as “giving up” or “failing”, and it’s often viewed negatively. People who struggle with negative body image may find the idea of self-acceptance to be a difficult challenge, perhaps due to the years of society conditioning us to believe we’re not enough as we are right now. The common solution to fix ourselves is some type of diet, make-up, exercise, outfit, etc. that will make us better, worthy and closer to being “enough”.

What if, you’re already enough as you are? Not just now, but always; before this moment, in this moment, and all the moments after this one. If you have been suffering from negative body image, why not give acceptance of yourself a chance? Become a friend to yourself, a supporter to yourself and become one with yourself. But what is acceptance?

Acceptance is:

  • Appreciating the functions your body performs daily
  • Recognizing your own uniqueness
  • Recognizing that your worth is not based on how you look
  • Understanding that human perfection doesn’t exist
  • Forgiving yourself
  • Nourishing your body because bodies need to eat
  • Moving your body because bodies need to move
  • Choosing to change your body
  • Choosing to love your body OR just be okay with your body

Acceptance is not:

  • Giving up on yourself
  • Self-hatred
  • Failure
  • Avoidance of nourishing foods and movement because you don’t care about weight/appearance

Suggested homework:

Write a letter of radical self-acceptance to yourself. Become aware of and observe negative self-talk surrounding yourself and your body using a nonjudgmental approach. Fight back your inner bully and defy negative self-talk in your letter. Read it to yourself while looking in the mirror and tell yourself that you are enough.


 Danielle Johnson RDN, CDN is a Registered Dietitian. A graduate of Long Island University CW Post, she works for Mather Hospital’s Bariatric Center of Excellence, where she specializes in surgical weight loss and medical weight management. She is also completing her Master of Science degree in Integrative Nutrition at Stony Brook University, as well as earning her yoga teacher training certificate.