Desperation, anger, sadness, fear and overall unhappiness Is everything you feel when experiencing Body Dysmorphia, never being able to be satisfied with the image in the mirror. Body dysmorphia is a mental disorder that is an obsession with the idea the ones body or body type is flawed.
Being an amateur boxer with a dream of someday becoming a pro my dreams were shattered when I tore my rotator cuff (group of muscles and tendons responsible for holding the shoulder joint in its socket). My obsession with staying lean and war ready ultimately caused my downfall. My obsession with being on top forced me to stay in the gym for hours, neglect food and sleep and ultimately caused me to be hospitalized and injured.
After suffering such an injury, the one thing that made me sane was taken away from me; I would never be able to step back in the ring. I fell into a deep depression with my outlet and source of happiness taken away from me, on top of that my fit body melted away and my depression deepened. I cut off friends and family, locked myself in my room and chose the darkness of my room as my sanctuary. The darkness hid my body from my own eyes. Until a couple months later where I discovered bodybuilding.
A sport where it’s not only a couple hours of dedication but a sport in which every minute of everyday counts. I fell in love with the idea of such a sport and began my journey into the bodybuilding realm. The bigger I got the smaller I seemed, I would stare in the mirror and yell at myself for not training and eating enough. I would blame myself for not having symmetrical biceps and lagging traps etc.
Again, my obsession became negative. Until one year ago I realized that no one is built perfectly. What was a perfect physique? That was the question I asked myself through such way of thought I was finally able to come to terms that it doesn’t matter if you don’t have the best physique, what matters is if you are better than who you were yesterday. After realizing THIS I based all my goals off the idea of “being the best version of yourself”. With such a way of thinking I was able to come to terms with myself and my body dysmorphia dissipated.
Today I stand as a nationally qualified physique competitor, fitness advocate and most importantly I am a happier and more confident man than I have ever been. I have become a source of motivation and a role model for those who have gone through a similar situation. My advice to those suffering with body dysmorphia is that you need to get over your mental barrier and your idea of perfection. No one is built perfectly, rather than focusing on being flawless focus on the idea of bettering yourself and those around you.
By: Ibrahim Mehmood
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