This week I wanted to share something I posted on Instagram this week…Here is the pic and the caption I wrote:
“The other day when I was bringing my kids to the beach I felt crappy about my body. Which isn’t new, honestly, this has been an ongoing issue with me for probably 30 years at this point? You guys, I have been any size from 0-12 and in not one of those sizes have I felt amazingly good about myself all of the time. I have to work at it! I have to stay away from my triggers: weighing myself and comparing myself to others and/ or past versions of myself. (This is my biggest struggle.) Anyone remember how 2 years ago I did BBG and macros? It was a huge PYHSICAL success, my body at that point had never been better. But that much focus on my physical self, and control over every ounce of food I put into my mouth was very, very damaging to my mental self. The last two years has been a recovery of sorts from that. Letting my body settle into its natural state. Which isn’t bad at all, I know this! It’s just different. I work daily to take my focus off of my physical self and work on my mental thoughts. I work with affirmations to replace those negative thoughts, often repeating them forcefully in my head over and over again. I move my body as much as I can, I drink water more than I want to, and I eat foods that bless my body. The rest I have to let go. There is no perfect state that I have found, and it doesn’t all matter anyway! All of us, fit or no, will turn into someone we don’t even recognize 50 years from now. So anyway, just a reminder that the person you may admire on Instagram struggles with image, too, and achieving that “perfect body” is impossible. We can only really hope to heal our minds and limiting beliefs in the end. And also, my kids won’t care that my thighs felt bigger than I wish that day at the beach, they’ll only remember that time a wave came up behind me and almost knocked me over. That made us all laugh, and isn’t that the point?”
I know most people will look at me and say, “Why is this girl worried about her body?” But you have to know, this isn’t about my size or weight or anything, it is about what my brain and ego tells me. It’s about childhood and young adult programming that I am currently working on letting go. Something I think a lot of women struggle with.
My ego and brain tries to say daily…
“You are gaining weight.”
“You looked better two years ago.”
“You should eat less/work out more.”
Here is the deal, though. I AM NOT LISTENING anymore. I, and YOU, are more than a body. I believe in being healthy and caring for ourselves, but from the standpoint of health and wellness, not punishment and scorn.
Here are two things I have been doing lately that have helped:
1) Listen to this podcast. (FREAKIN’ OPRAH. She’s done it again!) I believe I was meant to hear this at the exact right moment, and it is everything. All body insecurities stem from EGO. We want to look a certain way because it feeds our ego. This is normal. But we don’t need to obsess over it. The key steps are to RECOGNIZE when the EGO is taking over, OBSERVE the thoughts casually (try not to resist them), and then RELEASE these thoughts. We are not our thoughts, and if we give them a moment they will pass.
2) And affirmations! I know I am a broken record, but they work! I used these when I was in the hospital and they changed my mindset almost instantly. A couple favorite affirmations I use when my EGO tells me I a not enough,
“I have a body.” (The most effective, because your brain can’t fight it. It’s a neutral statement. I use this the most.)
“I am fit and healthy.”
“I am at my perfect weight.” (Know this…I have no idea what my weight is, I don’t weigh myself. But I believe that because I move my body and eat good foods most of the time, that whatever weight I am now is perfect for me.)
“I am healthy and free of illness.” (Said over and over again when I want to complain about illness, or feel bad for myself. I repeat this a million times during the school year when sickness rolls around.)
That’s it! I hope this helps you if you struggle with body image as I do. This has helped me so much in the past two years and I use these strategies daily.