Is there a part of you that feels consumed with concerns about your appearance? Have you always struggled with low self-esteem and poor body image? Now that you are an adult, you might be tired of disliking the way you look and questioning whether surgery might be the right option for you.
However, maybe you have also heard horror stories about plastic or bariatric surgery. You might know someone who hated their results, and you definitely do not want to feel the same. These procedures are permanent, and you want to make sure you are fully prepared for the changes ahead. Or, you might be certain that surgery is the right choice for you, but still feel some shame and guilt about your decision. So, you are seeking reassurance, validation, and support.
A successful plastic or bariatric surgery does not only come down to the surgeon’s skill or the physical results. Mental and emotional factors are also at play—if not now, then certainly during the healing process. To give yourself the best chance of surgical success, it is important to take a look at your relationship with self-image and understand the thoughts, feelings, and experiences that are motivating your decision.
In the following quiz, you will not find shame, judgment, or suggestions to avoid surgery. Instead, you will clarify your expectations for surgery and understand steps you can take to feel more satisfied with the results.
The following statements address common feelings and challenges related to poor body image and low self-esteem.
This quiz is not meant to serve as a diagnostic tool, and every person’s relationship with their appearance is different. That said, considering whether these statements ring “true” or “false” can help you better understand any underlying issues that might cause surgical dissatisfaction. If you approach this quiz with curiosity, openness, and honesty, you can gain valuable insights into your best next steps.
Simply read each statement and answer T for True or F for False. Score one point per True answer. Then, add up your points and read on to learn more about what your score means.
1. Concerns about my appearance take up a great deal of my time and energy.
2. Concerns about my appearance negatively impact my overall self-confidence and sense of self-worth.
3. Preoccupation with a specific body part regularly and negatively impacts my work life (e.g., I struggle to concentrate or focus on tasks).
4. Preoccupation with a specific body part regularly and negatively impacts my interpersonal interactions (e.g., I turn my face away from cashiers I avoid physical intimacy with romantic partners).
5. When life feels stressful and difficult, I fixate on my appearance even more than usual. (e.g., They broke up with me because of my nose).
6. I have avoided desirable events, opportunities, and relationships because I don’t want to be judged for my appearance.
7. My thoughts about my appearance are negatively affecting my overall happiness and success.
8. I have high standards and often think things could be better.
9. I am prone to feelings of sadness, worry, and/or self-deprecation.
10. I often struggle with thoughts, memories, and sensations related to past trauma.