In the last blog, I shared with you the importance of learning to tap into the part of you that is soul. You can’t feed soul through starvation, body-shaming, and unnecessary insecurities. You and I both know that when the going gets tough, for some reason, we become increasingly dissatisfied with our body. I know… I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. I want you to know that it is with with compassion and understanding that I insist that a positive identity can’t be found through the size or shape of your body. Searching for satisfaction through your jeans size will never lead you to feeling loved. It leads to the opposite: It leads to the dead-end road of self-pity and an uncomfortable relationship with food.
When things go wrong, we all tend to start blaming. You blame your body (that quirky “problem area” that you seem to notice more than anyone else!) You blame your thighs. You blame your hair. You blame your less-than-perfect abs. You blame your “rules to reach perfection” that you repeatedly break. May I suggest that the BLAMING STOPS TODAY.
Let me offer insight into this complex struggle so you can treat yourself with more compassion:
Preoccupation with weight and food won’t magically lead you to the discovery of confidence. It will, however, lead you to the feeling of being trapped. Trapped in obsessive thoughts about restricting food, counting calories, and (perceived) control. You end up trapped in the false belief that this unhealthy relationship with food is the path to being loved. Instead, it becomes the path to loneliness. It starts with loneliness, and it will remain stuck in that same loneliness. Trust me.
Shift your outlook and stop trying to convince yourself that the perfect body is the answer to that ocean-sized void you may be feeling. It doesn’t work that way. You are so much more than your body. Discovering your identity takes time. It takes trial-and-error and failing at some things while you excel at others. Please be patient. Please relax. There’s no rush. You’re looking for an identity because it’s what you’re biologically wired to do, but you have years to do it. Take your sweet time. Learn to be healthy for health’s sake… not for a come-over-here-and-notice-me body. Stop condemning the body that shows up for you every day (regardless of your insults and harsh remarks!). Try learning to love your body for once in your life. Take it on a bike ride. Take it on a hike. Take it to the most relaxing space you can imagine. Take it to hang out with your tribe. Keep showing up in positive ways for your fabulous body the way it constantly shows up for you.
Commit to establishing a new, healthy relationship with your body. Remind your body that it’s the vehicle in which you are able to live out your life. Start nurturing it instead of belittling it and complaining about it.
Lean in and believe me when I tell you that I don’t want you to suffer anymore. And I’m sure YOU don’t want YOU to suffer anymore. Please remember that you don’t love your friends because of how they look in their jeans, nor is that why they love you.
“It’s not your job to like me – it’s mine.” Byron Katie
by Dr. Alison Conner, psychologist and member of the Girlology Expert Panel