Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Why not? If you’ve been treated poorly in the past or told you and your body weren’t enough, that cycle needs to stop somewhere. Why not with you, and why not right now?
You may have bought into the belief that you won’t be enough until you please someone else’s version of you. You may even have taken on those beliefs so deeply that they’ve now become your own. Maybe you’ve tried your whole life to accomplish what you think will make someone else happy with you. And you can spend your whole life continuing to do that.
When you decide to be loving to yourself and your body, simply because you know it’s a better way of being in your life, you take back your power. It’s like you’re saying that you’re sick of waiting until ‘some day’ to give yourself what can belong to you now. You’re debunking the myth that there’s some other version of how you’re supposed to be that would allow you to deserve love.
Why do you have to keep waiting to be loving to yourself? Have you begun to get the feeling over time that maybe that day is never going to come? There’s nothing you should have to do to earn that feeling of peace or love inside. It’s given to all of us as a possibility, and something we can choose to create and cultivate. When you choose to create a better relationship with your body, you’re taking a powerful step of self-care, moving toward a way of being that will make you happier and healthier right now rather than waiting to prove to yourself that you deserve it. When you do that you are, of course, not just relating to your body differently; you’re giving yourself the possibility of being loved and accepted just for being who you are in every aspect of your life.
MYTH #5: If this doesn’t help me lose weight, it’s not worth it; that’s all I want.
You may have believed for a long time that losing weight is the one thing that will make you happy. Sometimes it’s more convenient to put all of our beliefs about our self-worth into one place; it’s less messy and less complicated. Of course, when you actually do lose the weight, everything else that you hoped would change as a result will still be there. There’s a good chance it won’t have miraculously changed just because you’re now a size 2.
That’s why it’s so important to think less about what you want to look like and more about how you want to feel. If you can find ways to cultivate how you want to feel, you get to keep the benefits forever. You’re feeling good is in your hands. What happens or doesn’t happen with your weight can never be the only thing that gives you your happiness.
It’s the same thing with any relationship. We can fight so hard for a goal we think we want: to be married, to have our partner say they love us. But if we don’t actually feel connected to them or feel good with them, the milestones have no meaning. We may fool ourselves into thinking they do, that we’ve arrived. But what we have on our hands is a hollow representation of what we want and not a living, breathing thing that we’re glad to be in every day.
If you make weight your only goal, you hold both your body and yourself hostage, as if you don’t exist and your relationship can’t exist until you’re thinner. It’s not fair to either of you. More importantly, it robs you of knowing that your happiness is so much more infinite than what size your waist is.
The irony is, that like so many things in life, when you let go of pursuing them so hard and concentrate on being who you want to be, miracles can begin to happen. By choosing to be in the kind of relationship you want instead of always focusing on the result, results have a chance to come to you without feeling like your life depends on them. When you know your worth is more than your weight you’ll be less attached to it as a representation of who you are, and more likely to be free of the negative cycles of guilt, blame and judgment that may have contributed to acting out with food or numbing out to yourself and your body’s needs. There is another way.
It can be scary to give up the external goal and just look at what’s here right now. But it’s also the only place change really happens: by facing what already is. What is it that you imagine being that perfect weight will somehow make you feel about yourself and your life? And if you can imagine it, why not try to create it in your relationship to your body right now?
You may understand all of this intellectually, and yet there still may be fears and blocks standing in the way of a more positive body relationship. When you try on a great relationship with your body, there might be voices that whisper to you things like, “You can’t have that…” or “The last time you felt good in your body look what happened…” or “You’re not allowed to feel good and not get shot down.” Whatever those voices are, now is the time to take a look at them and see if they might be willing to go away... See if you can stay with those voices until they grow silent; or silence them yourself by looking at how you no longer believe them or believe that they help you.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Okay, so I promised the final three myths or fears around having a good relationship with your body. But this next one is so juicy, that I think I'll finish with the final two next week. See if you can relate to this one and how it might be informing your own journey with your weight loss and self-esteem!
MYTH #3: I have to punish myself for my weight.
This is the greatest Catch-22 of them all. Don’t let yourself be happy until you’ve dropped the weight. Then guess what happens? That unhappiness creates more of the same, and makes it more likely that you’ll want to act out in unhealthy and unsupportive ways: by overeating, drinking, avoiding.
Happiness seems to create more happiness, while unhappiness creates more of the same. That’s why punishing yourself for your weight is never going to break the cycle. It’s only going to bring you more unhappiness.
You can go on doing this, but since you’re connected to your body for the rest of your life, sooner or later you might get sick of feeling like a martyr. It’s exhausting, and you’ll keep finding that it doesn’t get you to anything new. The more guilty and awful about yourself you feel, the more likely you are to keep recreating that state of being.
Books like The Secret have started to tell us how important our mindset is, that sometimes our thoughts can literally create our reality. I think it’s even more tangible than that. I think how we feel right now can create our reality. If you choose love and connection, you’re more likely to create a life that feels loving and connected. You have to feel what you want to feel in order to create more of the same in the future.
That’s the leap of faith here, and that’s why the tools in this book are so important. You can’t get to feeling good about your body by feeling bad about your body. That seems obvious, doesn’t it? But it’s hard for so many people to see.
When you stop punishing yourself and your body and start focusing on building a better relationship, you’re already giving yourself the tools to create something that feels better right now. That more connected, loving place is more likely to create more of the same. When that happens, you begin to break the cycle of negativity you were stuck in. Then you’re already creating the feeling of the reality you wanted: to feel good, to feel more energized, to feel more alive. The external changes become the icing on the cake, and much more possible.
Don’t fool yourself into thinking punishment is required for you to get where you want to go. Punishment will create more feelings of punishment. Forgiveness, listening and reconnecting will create a way of being with your body that change that cycle, which is really what you’ve wanted all along: to feel better!
You may need to ask yourself if you believe it’s okay for things to feel good and to be easier. Maybe you’ve gotten used to the feeling of punishment, to never feeling like enough, to having a reason—like your body weight—to minimize your goals or your dreams. As you forgive your body, you may also need to forgive yourself, and allow a way of being that is kinder and more loving into your life.