The topic of weight loss for women is filled with the idea that your body must be changed before you can love it. This is horseshit, and it could be what’s keeping you from achieving your health and weight loss goals. Loving your body as it is today is a vitally important factor in healthy weight loss and maintenance.
At age nineteen, I achieved fast weight loss through restrictive eating accompanied by constant negative self talk about how fat and gross I was. This led me to a vicious cycle of binge eating, self hatred, and uncontrollable weight gain that I would not break for several years.
I hid from friends and family out of shame about my weight. I thought my yo-yoing weight was like wearing a giant Repulsive Failure sign. Thank goodness there was no Facebook back then, I would have had a lot of untagging to do.
The pain became so unbearable that one day I made the statement that would change my life for good: “I may never get skinny again, but I’m done with hating my body. Body, I am so sorry. From now on I will always be good to you. If I’m still heavy, so be it.”
Living by that simple statement led me to easily lose sixty pounds and maintain that loss to date. I exercise regularly and eat well. Sometimes I don’t, when I’m on vacation or I’m getting my period, and I really don’t care. Since I’m well fed and nothing is off limits, the compulsion to binge eat has dried up and disappeared. I have no drama around food and weight.
If you take the same pledge I did and promise your body that you will love it for always, no matter what its weight, you will get the same miraculous results.
Love your body – sounds kind of woo-woo and airy-fairy, huh? Especially when you’ve been seeing women in magazines airbrushed to high heaven and listening to fat talk amongst your girlfriends for as long as you can remember.
If you want to build your confidence and feel great about your body but don’t know how, this post is your how-to guide. Your own personal map to body bliss town, with me as your Navigratress. Hooray!
Pay attention to it!
Your body is brilliant. It knows how to circulate blood and heal your wounds without your input. A system with so much natural wisdom has a much better idea about what’s good for it than those cheesy women’s magazines. Your body talks to you every single day, you know. Please listen to the whispers so your body doesn’t have to scream at you with serious illness.
If you’re exhausted, have skin issues, have funky periods, or have explosive diarrhea regularly, your body is telling you that it would like you to change something. So many of us have become accustomed to living with a low-level malaise that we don’t realize that something is wrong.
Don’t feed your body salad in the winter when it’s begging you for a warm, cooked meal. Don’t run around doing favors for people so they’ll like you better when your body is asking for time alone so it can recharge.
Your body is giving you constant cues about what it needs to feel amazing. Those cues deserve your attention. You are meant to feel healthy and full of energy!
Say nice things to it!
Express love to your body. Just as your body speaks to you, you can speak back through your thoughts and words (spoken and written). How much do you love hearing how loveable and gorgeous you are?
Why would you give anything less than that to your body, the one thing you can be sure will be with you until you die?
This is more than just a touchy-feely idea. In Bruce Lipton’s The Biology of Belief, he presents some mind-blowing information. It turns out that our thoughts and words have a real and measurable influence on the cells in our bodies. In short, your body truly will function better if you stop trash-talking it and start treating it like a queen.
Here are some ideas on how to sweet talk your body:
- Give yourself a wink in the mirror
- When your girlfriends talk about how fat they feel and how much they dread bathing suit shopping, do not join in the conversation
- Thank your body for its many miraculous functions: thank your legs for giving you mobility, thank your belly for digesting your food, and thank your eyes for allowing you to see
- When you look in the mirror, look yourself in the eye and say, “You’re perfect, and I love you just the way you are.”
- Write Operation Beautiful notes.
If this feels uncomfortable to you, start small. Falling in love with your body after years of hating it can be a big change. Don’t get discouraged, stick with it! If you consistently communicate love to your body, she will give you her very best.
Do nice things for it!
Once you’ve gotten in the habit of whispering sweet nothings your body, it’s time to put your money where your mouth is. If our bodies respond well to positive words and thoughts, they go absolutely bananas for being treated well.
You’ve got five senses, baby, now is the time to use each and every one of them to give your body the pleasure it deserves. I don’t care if you get a massage, buy yourself some luxurious new sheets, trim your damn cuticles – just pick something that will feel great to your body and make it a part of your routine from now on.
Another way to show your body love is to feed it foods that make it run well. Exactly what foods those are will differ from body to body, but give your sweet body the time it deserves to figure out what those are. What foods fill you with energy when you’re done eating them? What foods make you feel depressed and cranky?
Start right now!
Your body deserves your loving kindness starting right this minute, no matter where you are in your weight loss journey. You’re already perfect, start acting like you know it!
If you know any women whose bodies deserve a hell of a lot more love than they’ve been getting, please share this blog post with them.