Do you have a desire to lose weight or change your body BEFORE you feel like you can love and accept it?
Intuitive Eating Series Principle #8 - Respect your Body
If I asked you the first words that came to mind when describing your body, what would you say?
It might seem funny that we're talking body image in a series that's been all about food, but when you really think about it, doesn't it make sense that body image and food go together just about as good as peanut butter and jelly?
In fact, let me ask you the same question I asked at the beginning of this video. If I asked you the first words that came to mind when describing your body, what would you say? How do you talk about yourself when you're alone and when you're around other people?
Adopting the intuitive eating lifestyle also means building a better respect for your body and loving the skin you're in.
I know, however that this can be a sensitive subject for some, so I approach this topic with the utmost respect and sensitivity. No matter where you're at in your journey to loving your body, I hope today's video will help you take one small step toward loving yourself more.
First, I have a question for you. If you often find yourself talking negatively about your body, pointing out your flaws, or being unable to accept or believe a body compliment, how has that served you? Has dwelling on your imperfect body helped you tone up? Has chewing yourself out every time you stepped on the scale helped you lose weight?
Focusing on your body in such a negative way doesn't serve you one single bit. So, no matter where you are in your journey, you can find a way to respect your body. And today we're going to talk about 3 ways to do that.
Can you love your body AND want weight loss?
Before I move on, I want to clarify a question that might be on your mind. Can you still love and respect your body AND want weight loss at the same time? The simple answer is yes. If you are willing to have weight loss be your secondary goal and respecting your body your primary goal, then you can happily move forward with goals and change and all of that. In working with many clients over the years, I can tell you that unless they worked on creating a respect for their bodies first, they never found that love and respect even after they reached their weight loss goals!
2 steps to respecting your body
There are two steps to respecting your body. The first is to make it comfortable. The second is to meet its basic needs. You should feel comfortably fed, comfortably dressed, and move in a comfortable way.
Let's start with the first way to love and respect your body. STOP body bashing.
Pay attention for one day. How do you talk about your body? Instead of body bashing, I want to give you a challenge. Sit yourself in front of the mirror (if you feel comfortable) and focus on gratitude. Thank your body for all it's done for you. Practice gratitude for every area you possibly can. Has your belly carried and borne children? Be thankful for that beautiful gift. Do your legs help you run errands easily throughout the day? Tell them thank you. Take a moment each day to practice gratitude for your body. And, when the natural body bashing or negative thoughts want to creep in, turn them into a simple gratitude. You'll be surprised at how much this simple exercise can help!
In fact, if you really want to practice this principle, I have a free self-love affirmation workbook that helps you create an affirmation of self-love to repeat daily.
Ok, the 2nd way we're loving and respecting our body today. Quit comparing and respect diversity. It's easy to get caught up in what other's women's bodies look like. "They're thinner than I am", "Oh man, I'd give anything to look that toned!", "I wish I looked like THAT in a swimsuit!" I know these are all phrases we've uttered - it's a natural tendency as women to compare. I'm not sure why, but it is! But you know what? You're on your own journey. And you have your own unique body.
Some women may never have that gap in their thighs that others do (and I know you know what I'm talking about)... oh, how I used to envy those women. It kind of sounds silly even saying that out loud. Now, the only reason I envy them is because they don't have to worry about getting rashes from their legs rubbing together when they walk!
When you're tempted to compare yourself to others remind yourself that everyone is different and that's what makes life wonderful. And then move on.
Lastly, and probably most importantly, treat your body with respect TODAY. Do nice things for yourself. Go get a massage and get naked (it sounds silly, but has that ever held you back? Wondering if the masseuse might judge you?) Take a bubble bath. Buy the clothes you want TODAY. Stop waiting until the scale tells you you can buy the clothes. Stop walking around feeling uncomfortable because you refuse to buy clothes that fit. You will feel much better in clothes that are comfortable no matter what size they are!
Give your body what it needs and allow it to be comfortable. And while you're at it, also start respecting your inner qualities. Are you funny, witty, smart, hard-working, a good listener, patient, adventurous, easy going, or anything else? Remind yourself that loving your inner and outer qualities are equally important.
Ok, now you have 3 simple steps you can follow to start loving and respecting your body today. Will you pick one of them to start today? Tell me your first step in the comments below! I'm so thankful you stayed for the video today and truly hope you can find the love and respect for your body that you desire.