According to an interview with Vogue Magazine, Keira Knightly the actress and model, face of international brand Chanel, and main feature of numerous magazine spreads, has admitted that she is self-conscious and struggles with body anxiety issues.
In the interview she reports rather than facing a mirror each morning marking her appearance for that day either as good or bad, she reported symptoms of anxiety for example while on holiday at the thought of wearing a bikini. Keira Knightly also reported that she would often be thinking about the modelling environment, particularly, how she will be looking from different angles.
These symptoms of extreme self-consciousness and anxiety about appearance and body image are becoming a more wide spread problems in young people. Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is a type of anxiety disorder characterised by perpetuating thoughts of body flaws that causes extreme emotional distress, often it interferes with day to day activities and functioning, with many people diagnosed with BDD showing symptoms of social anxiety; avoiding social situations including school, university and work. Many sufferers may isolate themselves from family and friends, due to the fear of others noticing their perceived flaws.
Mindfulness meditation is a technique that teaches people to become aware, both of their thoughts and emotions, body sensations that may arise in response and the subsequent behavioural response. It is often the case that people diagnosed with BDD will also undergo extreme measures including potentially unnecessary surgeries in order to ‘correct’ body flaws, to this end, Mindfulness can encourage acceptance and self compassion in order that an individual may choose not to put their body under extreme stress in order to change appearances.