Messages about body image are inescapable. Advertisements, social media, movies, magazines, and personal relationships—it’s everywhere you look. Because body image is often deeply intertwined with self-esteem and mental wellness, it can be an important subject within therapy.
The Body Image: Discussion Questions handout provides education on body image, along with seven thought-provoking questions. Each question encourages exploration of body image, self-esteem, culture, and how they interact.
Try using these questions as a starting point for conversations with groups or individuals. You may find that discussion on body image brings about conversation on other issues, such as anxiety, depression, and eating disorders.
For more information on body image, take a look at our Body Image Info Sheet.
1. Alleva, J. M., Martijn, C., Van Breukelen, G. J., Jansen, A., & Karos, K. (2015). Expand Your Horizon: A programme that improves body image and reduces self-objectification by training women to focus on body functionality. Body Image, 15, 81-89.
2. Cash, T. F., & Smolak, L. (Eds.). (2011). Body image: A handbook of science, practice, and prevention (2nd ed.). Guilford Press.
3. Grogan, S. (2006). Body image and health: Contemporary perspectives. Journal of Health Psychology, 11(4), 523-530.
4. Guest, E., Costa, B., Williamson, H., Meyrick, J., Halliwell, E., & Harcourt, D. (2019). The effectiveness of interventions aiming to promote positive body image in adults: A systematic review. Body Image, 30, 10-25.
5. Wood-Barcalow, N. L., Tylka, T. L., & Augustus-Horvath, C. L. (2010). “But I like my body”: Positive body image characteristics and a holistic model for young-adult women. Body Image, 7(2), 106-116.