YOU ARE WHAT YOU THINK…
There’s this old cliche’, “You are what you eat”. While that maybe true to some extent, I’m here to tell you, you are what you think and positive thoughts and beliefs about yourself will leave you feeling as light as a feather. Once upon a time, I thought I had a positive body image, but in reality- I didn’t. I dressed nicely, men were attracted to me, folks always said I was pretty, I rarely received negative feedback about how I looked. Despite all of these positive things, I realized how unhappy I was and that body image had nothing to do with other people, it had everything to do with me.
Privately, I looked in the mirror and didn’t like the image looking back at me and I didn’t feel good on the inside. For years I fought with my body, doing fad diets to lose weight quickly, only to gain it back plus more. Television and magazines only made it worse. I beat myself up for not looking like “it” celebs.
It took a lot of soul searching and a little bit of counseling for me to figure out that my negative body image stemmed from other issues that I needed to deal with. I also had to come to terms with the fact that I probably would never look like the “it” celebs and guess what? That was ok, because they usually don’t look like what we see! Tons of professional make up, photo editing and great lighting goes into nailing the “it” look. My new goal was to be the best me I could be and that meant getting healthy and well from the inside out. No more diets, it was time for a lifestyle change; something I could stick with for the long haul. No more beating myself up; if I had a piece of cake….I ate it….It was good….I moved on and had something healthier next time.
I made a conscious effort to deal with stress in a constructive manner and to build positive/healthy relationships. I surround myself with people and activities that are good for my spirit. I exercise (sometimes) pray and meditate. All of which have been very good for my health. It’s about a mind, body, soul balance and when those elements are in harmony the outward appearance will show beauty, strength and confidence!
So, thinking back, I shed a lot of weight….and a lot of unwanted and unnecessary mental and emotional baggage. I look at myself today and I can honestly say I am happier with my (curvy, thick, fat, plus size, whatever you want to call it)….self than I’ve ever been, because my outward appearance no longer defines me. We get one body, treat it well!