Negative Thoughts Cloud Life
I have struggled for a long time, as many women do, with accepting my imperfect body that doesn’t meet society’s standards of beauty. I’ve spent countless minutes, maybe even hours, each and every day, worrying about:
- my chubby cheeks
- the way my chubby cheeks squeeze my eyes when I smile
- the way necklaces with standard length chains look on my thick neck
- the way my shirt shows off my muffin top, doesn’t cover my back when I bend down, and emphasizes my thick arms
- the way my boobs sit on the sides of my chest so I never have nice cleavage and always look like I have the chest of a pre-teen
- the way my chin doubles when I laugh
- the way I have no defined jawline
- the way I carry most of my excess weight in my stomach
- the way my stomach looks like it’s home to a growing baby, although it’s not (I wish it was)
- the way I can’t wear certain clothing, like a pencil skirt or a tight tank top, for fear of being mistaken as pregnant
- the way my thighs touch when I stand
- the painful chafing between my thighs when I wear a dress, skirt, or shorts cropped above the knee
- the way my calves are so thick I often wonder if they are starting to look like cankles
- the orange skin on the bottom of my feet
- how pale my skin is that I look sick or as if I never come out from the basement
- the way my skin burns easily and, when it does, it resembles pig skin
- the way you can see my purple and blue veigns beneath my skin because of how pale I am
- the way my hair turns grey-ish in the winter because it’s naturally blonde and without the sun keeping it light and golden it turns dark and ashy
- the acne on my face that shows I don’t eat well
- my short and stubby fingers that prove my bad habit of cracking my knuckles
I could continue but I think I’ve made my point. I spend lots of valuable time and use precious space in my brain for some very negative thoughts towards my body. Often times they’re things I can’t even change without drastic and ridiculous measures like plastic surgery or starvation.
Turning Negativity into Positivity
I know I’m not alone. I know many women think similar thoughts on a daily basis. But I’ve been working on changing this pattern of negativity.
Ever since my last blog post, Don’t Worry (About the Number on the Scale); Be Happy, I haven’t stepped onto my scale at all. So, don’t ask me how much I weigh, because I couldn’t tell you. I can tell you that the last time I weighed myself I was 163 lbs. I can tell you that that’s almost the heaviest I’ve ever been. I can tell you that I hate that number and I’d like it to be lower. I can tell you that I am fearful that the number has increased since the last time I weighed myself. I can tell you that I am tempted to step on that scale to see if my fear is a reality or not.
But, I have decided that instead of focusing on the number on the scale, I will focus on the way my body feels. I will use this to determine if I am hungry and what I am hungry for, if I have had enough to eat or if I could eat more, if I am thirsty, if I am ready for a workout, if I need a casual walk to clear my mind, if I should wear stretchy clothing because I am bloated or tight clothing because I feel confident. Again, I could go on forever, but I think you get the point.
Positive Thoughts Brighten Life
What I’ve noticed since I made this small change is a huge change in my personality, my body image, and the overall way that I feel.
I am so much happier. I attribute this to the fewer negative thoughts running through my mind and the increased space in my brain to think of other, more positive and productive things that make me happy. I no longer feel depressed. I don’t feel ashamed of myself for the way I look, the things I enjoy eating, the workouts I don’t complete everyday, etc.
I feel free.
Brighten Your Life
I encourage every woman out there struggling with body image issues and being happy with who they are to throw out their scale, and start focusing on how you feel on the inside. Focus on fueling your body with nutrients and enjoying exercise rather than starving yourself or doing boot camp to try and meet an unrealistic ideal of beauty.
This does not mean you can eat chips for breakfast, ice cream for lunch and cake for dinner and sit on your ass 24/7. Obviously your body wouldn’t feel very good if you did that. So don’t get carried away. Be true with your goals, stay healthy, and most importantly, happy.
Tell Me What You Think
I love discussing things with people who have the same or different opinions than I do. Feel free to leave a comment on my blog or tweet to me.