The Be Body Positive Model

The Be Body Positive Model provides people of all ages, sizes, sexual orientations, genders, ethnicities, abilities, and socioeconomic levels with a whole-person, non-shaming approach to the mystery and miracle of living in a human body. Our model is comprised of five core Competencies, the fundamental skills we can practice on a daily basis to live peacefully and healthfully in our bodies. When we become proficient—competent—at using these skills, we are able to care for ourselves from a place of self-love and appreciation, which allows us to act on our purpose and life goals.

Health, as defined in our model, recognizes the interconnectedness of physical, psychological, and emotional needs in human beings. We honor the experience and authority of the individual as the primary path to positive change. Rather than dictating a prescriptive set of rules to follow, we empower people with practical tools, inspiration, and support to find their own way to lasting good health and greater happiness. This approach makes it possible to reach a widely diverse group of people.

Negative body image is linked to poor overall life quality. It also leads to poor self-care, eating disorders, depression, anxiety, self-harming behaviors (e.g., cutting, suicide), substance abuse, weight cycling, and relationship violence. We are especially concerned about these harmful behaviors in teens and young adults, which is why we provide body-oriented social emotional education. It is imperative to help young people create positive relationships with their physical selves in order to achieve their full potential.

Feedback indicates that the resources provided by our Be Body Positive Model significantly boost body image, as well as the ability to regulate eating, overcome depression and anxiety, and increase self-worth. Research conducted at Stanford University in 2014 showed that this model is strongly associated with self-compassion, healthy eating and exercise, more satisfying relationships, emotional wellbeing, and lower levels of anxiety. Cornell University is currently conducting a pilot study of their adaptation of our Be Body Positive curriculum for colleges.

To learn more, we encourage you to read our book, Embody: Learning to Love Your Unique Body (and quiet that critical voice!), which brings our work to life through research-based information, a diverse and inspiring collection of personal stories, and simple, powerful Body Positive practices that accompany each chapter.

Read about the competencies

To learn more about how to apply the Be Body Positive Model to your life, purchase our book Embody: Learning To Love Your Unique Body (and quiet that critical voice!)