What makes it so difficult to feel comfortable in our own skin?
Why do we struggle to accept our bodies exactly as they are?
How is it that shame becomes our default when it comes to our amazing bodies that allow us to live, move, love, and breath?
It’s a complex issue.
I grew up in a fat phobic family. Comments about larger women such as “How could she have let herself go like that?” rolled of my mother’s tongue with ease, without considering the harm in her words!
Coming home from holidays would result in one of two greetings: “You’re looking great, you’ve lost weight!” or “How are you, you’ve put some weight on since we last saw you.”
I remember my kindergarten teacher losing weight after a divorce. She was showered with compliments about how great she looked in a smaller body. My 5-year-old self wondered why no one gave her compliments when she was in a larger body. She was beautiful then too.
We place so much value on weight, thinness, size and shape, over our
well-being. The diet industry tricks us into believing that restricting food and food groups is not dieting but, in fact, about our health and well-being.
Does it mean we don’t care about our health if we eat carbs, pizza, pasta and drink beer?
It’s a disguise, a trick to get us to lose weight in the name of “health”.
Thinness, however, does not always equal health.
We know that dieting is the gateway to disordered eating. Eating disorders, such as anorexia, binge eating disorder, and others don’t begin in a vacuum. They begin by dieting and believing that our bodies are not Ok exactly as they are.
I started my first diet when I was 10 years old.
By the time I was 19, I was living on very few calories. Purging followed each binge. At my lowest weight, I starved my body to get there and lived in fear that I’d regain the weight I’d worked so hard to lose.
I was getting compliments and attention. Mom was so pleased that I’d finally lost weight. And yet, I remember looking in the mirror, shocked at the vision that stared back at me.
I thought I’d look amazing in my new tight jeans that every slim woman was wearing.
Instead, I still saw a flawed, overweight, unhappy young women who could not have been more uncomfortable in her body.
My victory on the scale through dieting and restriction was short-lived. The inevitable happens when we “fall off the wagon” and can’t sustain a diet anymore. Weight seems to find our bodies with ease, and the fear we felt about regaining unwanted pounds turns to judgement and criticism.
Our bodies know that long-term starvation and restriction are not sustainable.
Our bodies are wise and have the answers we search for.
Why then, did I continue the war I’d been waging on my body?
Why did I continue fighting to stick to the latest food plan, cursing myself for my weakness around food and wine?
Food and Body Wars
When I’m asked:
“But what if I don’t like living in a larger body?”
“What if I'm afraid to stop dieting in case I gain weight?”
“What if I'd rather stay on this diet plan because without it I feel out of control?”
I can only tell you that I was afraid too.
On the cusp of giving up dieting, I asked myself these questions:
How many diets have you been on in your lifetime?
How long is it before you start “cheating” on a diet? How many binges have you had over the course of a diet?
Do you need a “success story” or a new 30 day challenge to get you fired up again so you can “get back on track”?
How many times have you lost weight only to put it all (and maybe more) back on again? How did you feel about your body then?
How often have you felt bad about your body when your weight goes up on the scale even if you’ve been “good” all week?
How many times have you reached your “goal” weight? How long were you able to maintain it? How many times were you afraid of eating in case you’d put weight back on?
What have you put off or not participated in because you don’t like the look or size of your body (wearing a bathing suit, swimming, going to a pool party etc.)?
I invite you to reflect on your answers and consider that if dieting and restricting food worked, you wouldn’t be reading this post, contemplating your next diet, beating yourself up for falling off the diet wagon, or focusing on what’s wrong with your body.
What it would be like for you to feel fully embodied, and value and appreciate (even love) your body at her current size?
How you would feel, relaxed around food, making choices that serve your body, honouring her natural signals of hunger and fullness, movement and rest?
Ending the war between you and your body so that you are free to choose what works for YOU without relying on external resources to tell you what’s best for YOUR unique body.
The Journey to a W.I.S.E.R Woman’s Body
Each time we diet, our personal power seeps out of us like a slow leak.
The control we think we have over our bodies is an illusion.
After losing the rolls around our bellies, our bodies tell us they will not starve any longer and soon we are searching for the next quick fix to wrestle our biology to the ground.
When we eat emotionally, binge because we’ve been restricting, become obsessed with dieting or overeat without being connected to our bodies, we are really crying out for peace, freedom, and self-love.
ready to make peace with your body and call a truce with food?
ready to create self trust and belief in yourself?
ready to triumph over self-criticism and doubt, shame and body hatred?
If you are, I’d love to help!
Let’s chat about how we could journey to a W.I.S.E.R Woman’s Body together. You don’t have to do this alone!
Book a “Love Your Body ~ Love Yourself” Free Consultation today and take the very first step toward Food Freedom and Self-acceptance and Love!
PS: I’d love for you to join my free online Community where I’ll be hosting a 5 day W.I.S.E.R Woman Body Image Journey in September. We’ll be discussing how to change your mindset, become an expert in your own body wisdom and finally find the freedom you’ve been searching endlessly for with like-minded, solution oriented women on the same journey. Private message to come along and “Join the Journey”. I’d be delighted to include you!