My arms are too flabby, boobs are too saggy, my legs are too short, my feet too wide, my stomach too round and my chin too doubley. These are all things I say to myself constantly without even registering them, they infiltrated my mind a long time ago and try as I might I’ve never been able to properly silence those judgements. These statements may seem ridiculous to some especially in my privileged white, blonde and size 8 vessel and the fact that I also work in a club in which I am required to wear skimpy costumes and put on a confident facade and honestly, I can understand that. Those of you that know me very well though, know this is an ongoing battle for me, one that hinders my life in every capacity.
Before starting recovery when I was still underweight I thought I’d hate my body more and more with every lb gained and yes it did start out that way but during recovery I realised no matter how skinny I ever got I would still never be happy, that is the very nature of the disease of course but it’s not just weight related. The dysmorphia that comes with it and being unsure of your actual body shape is such a struggle between confusion and reality.
I’ve battled with this hatred of my body shape, weight proportions, breast shape, feet shape (yes really) for such a long time now it’s unimaginable to think of my life without it but these thoughts affect people every day, they stop us from attending social occasions, holidays, fun activities, work events all because of the body we have.
It is, in actuality such a vapid and unimportant thing to spend so much time worrying about and yet it is so commonplace to have extremely negative views of our looks. I do not have one solid answer to help but I do have a plan of action!
No, this is not a post just for me to gratuitously whine about my figure and then do nothing about it. I’m going to change these thought patterns, well I’m going to try.
I thought I could use this post almost as accountability for myself as my self esteem is very low at the moment and I’m struggling with every day tasks because of it so perhaps you can join me on a few everyday exercises as we face the path to self love together!
I’m going to try every single day to recite positive affirmations to myself in the mirror, I always feel silly doing this and it’s automatic for my brain to shut down the positive with a negative but hopefully if we do it enough, something might just stick. My therapist has told me that 21 days is all it takes to form a habit.
I am so lucky to have two arms and two legs that work perfectly well and a body that, although has a shit immune system, works pretty well most of the time. It’s so easy to forget this and take it for granted but in actuality I am so lucky to be able to run, jump, skip and move my body however I want to and I must practice gratitude for this every day. There are so many people that will never be able to do these things that I take as a given every single morning. Just as people with decent eye sight should wake up and be thankful for their sight, we must remember how lucky we are even when it feels like we aren’t.
3. SOCIAL MEDIA
Follow more body positivity accounts and have a clear out of anything that makes you feel bad about yourself, you don’t have to keep up with the Kardashians if it makes you feel inferior and worthless. I follow a few that are filled with wonderful and empowering posts and its uplifting to see them.
Some of my favourites are :
4. YOGA AND MEDITATION
I used to swear by yoga and it truly makes me grin like an idiot every time I go to a class or practice at home but I have been lazy for months now only doing the odd twenty minutes here and there and I have most definitely seen a difference in my mood.
Yoga is great for grounding you and that really helps me personally with a lot of BPD symptoms such as dissociation , it’s also brilliant because it’s not based on numbers or reps it’s just allowing your body to achieve what is possible on that day and cherishing the movements.
5. CLEAR OUT
I don’t know about you but I have things in my wardrobe from a size 4 to a size 12, I will never be a size 4 again or even a 6 unless I was to relapse as that is just not how my body is supposed to be and that is perfectly ok! I keep these ‘skinny’ clothes and measure my self worth against them in the cruelest self -damaging way and it has to stop. Why on earth does a smaller piece of fabric equate to me loving myself more?! Chuck em in the bin, or better yet donate them.
So here is my challenge to myself and to you, lets see if we can find some confidence and love our beautiful and perfect bodies,