How often do you tell yourself that you’re fat, your hair is terrible, that you’re scruffy? Or that you don’t earn enough or see your friends less often than you should?
Research suggests that the average woman bombards herself with these and other criticisms at least eight times a day.
And one in seven admits criticising herself regularly throughout the entire day, according to a survey of 2 000 women.
Feeling overweight and other image-based criticisms were most common, while worrying about not earning enough and deliberately deflecting compliments were other ways women punished themselves.
Eighty-nine percent confessed that they would praise other women in ways that they would never compliment themselves.
The study was conducted by Weight Watchers, which worked with eight cultural experts to explore how modern life affects the relationship a woman has with herself.
The rise of Instagram and similar picture-sharing social media services has led to the prevalence of women criticising their image, the report says.
This was followed by general lifestyle judgments such as not having the “right” job. The study says this is the result of today’s “Hall of Mirrors Era” in which women are bombarded with images of perfection and achievement everywhere they look.
The findings also showed that women begin berating themselves almost straight away each day, with 46 percent of those surveyed admitting to criticising themselves at least once before 9.30am.
Alongside frequent self-criticisms, the study found that 42 percent admitted to never complimenting themselves, while the remainder gave themselves a positive thought or “pat on the back” only once a day.