Half if not more of the battle for your health or your weight is in your head. What we say to ourselves is incredibly powerful and yet we talk about that so little. I once talked to a client after she had something of a frustration meltdown over her lack of progress towards her goals. After talking about how she had felt about herself at that moment, we both agreed that she would never talk to her dog that way but somehow she was OK with unleashing those words upon herself. We talked about ways to break that cycle and one of them was to short circuit the process by calling a friend or me to help her get through the moment without doing such emotional damage.
When it comes to our bodies, we can speak kindly or badly. When it comes to our health, we can speak of wellness or illness. I am constantly reminded how we tend to own our diseases. “I have allergies.” “My mom has breast cancer.” ” I have Fibromyalgia.” Sometimes we talk more about what’s wrong with us instead of what is right, and perfect and healthy about us. It’s the same thing with our bodies…” I have large thighs.” “All the women in my family are big.” ” I can’t find any clothes to fit me.”
While we all know that we are supposed to consult our doctor before we make a diet change or start an exercise program, maybe we should check in with the voices in our head. If you are like me, there’s a constant dialog going on up there. In his book, “10 % Happier”, Dan Harris describes our internal narrator as “The voice that comes braying in as soon as we open our eyes in the morning and then heckles us all day long with an air horn. It’s a fever swamp of urges, desires and judgements. It’s fixated on the past and the future to the detriment of here and now. ” If I am honest, my internal judge is mad that I don’t write as well as Dan Harris did when I really should be focussed on the priviledge of writing at all and the joy of finding my own unique voice.
So before you start anything, you must begin with the idea of success… which means gratitude and self-love. Your body is really perfectly healthy. Instead of starting with how much you hate your shape, you must start with acknowledging all that your body has given you. Your body wants good food, to be treated well, to experience all it’s senses, to be in glorious harmony with nature, to have great sex and to be well rested. I promise you if you come from that place, you will make better choices. The alternative sounds like this “Hey , you fat cow. No one will ever love you when you look like that. Heck, I don’t love you when you look like that. It’s time for some drastic starvation, low calorie, fat-burning pill action.” And then your empty, self-hating thoughts back fire and you find yourself staring at a nearly empty package of Oreos…. day 403 of starting all over.
So see if you can shift those thoughts. That’s not to imply that you be complacent, give up, stay in a permanent comfy pajama state. Just put a picture in your head of where you really want to be. Come up with a mantra to replace the negative thought. “I am on a journey to becoming my healthiest self.” Write down your intentions for happiness and wellness for today. Breath in the glory of that perfectly healthy body. I have written down my workout for today and laid out my workout clothes…. I already know that I am making progress. Onward.