One of the biggest thing we talk about here at Women Create Weekly is self-love, self-acceptance.
With a new year dawning, you’ll see New Year’s Resolution posts all over the place.
One that seems to speak the loudest: LOSE WEIGHT.
You see, I’m about 40 pounds heavier that I would prefer to be. It’s been a struggle for the last 3.5 years since I moved away from my strict trainer. She worked miracles, y’all. I adore her. But… I realized as I’ve done personal development for the last few years is that I did it with people-pleasing as the strongest motivator. I could show up for HER, but it was harder to show up for myself. This time I want it to be ME-led.
I get asked almost once a week if I’m pregnant.
That’s where I hold the weight. I could totally pull off 7 months pregnant. What’s worse is when after they find out they are wrong about thinking I’m pregnant, they just keep going: “well, you have the pregnancy waddle” or “my daughter saw you announce it on facebook”… nope, sorry! But most often it’s a blank stare. I’ve gotten really good responding now: “Nope, it’s just my food baby” or “I just like food too much.” It doesn’t really phase me anymore. Most of the time.
But I’d like to not have to explain my belly any more.
Thus, the crowdsource on facebook.
I went into a group I’m in with a bunch of business ladies and asked for motivation/opt-ins/blog posts/etc to help inspire me. My brain knows all the ways; my body is less willing. But I’m sick and tired of feeling this way.
I had at least 80 people jump in to the discussion. I had a lot of friend requests of people with weight-loss profile pictures. Lots of enthusiastic people telling me their answers. Often programs/supplements. One lady told me my best solution was bariatric surgery. I had to google that to make sure it was what I thought she was saying. What in the world?? That’s a solution for some, but it seemed extreme to be her first suggestion. I just said I wanted to get healthier/thinner. Most people recommended their clean-eating motivation groups/programs. A lot had free group challenges starting soon. What I really appreciated is the people who took a minute to share helpful information, ask questions, and “chat” if we’d been sitting next to each other at a networking lunch.
Honestly, it exhausted me reading all their responses.
I joined a few of the healthy facebook groups, so I’d have that sprinkle in my newsfeed.
Here’s the magical thing, though.
My answer didn’t come from ANY their responses.
My answer came from the process of asking the question. It helped me WANT to find the answer more.
Not just staying in the discouragement downward spiral. Victim thinking.
So what’s my answer?
Here it is:
Do what already works for me.
I’ve done it before, I can do it again. But I failed. And I failed again. But this time? This time is different.
I wasn’t making the feeling FAT a priority in this search. I wasn’t beating myself for not being what I wanted to be.
I was spending time reading, and thinking, and making the solution a priority (not the feeling fat part).
It feels possible again. I believe it’s going to happen. It’s like someone turned on the light. It’s possible.
On paper, nothing’s changed. But it feels completely different.
So what’s worked for me then?
It’s not Keto, or Whole 30, or Intermittent fasting, or paleo or…. [insert current diet fad here]
It’s just some guidelines that help me, and I can adjust as needed (and add more to as these become easy)
- Don’t eat after 6 pm.
- Now, this is a gray line. I try to start dinner 5/5:30, but I’m not going to put my fork down at 6:00 on the dot. We’re nixing the 10pm ice cream binges, my friend. Whatever your time, choose it and give the gift to yourself to hold that boundary.
- My sister has the best phrase when offered something and it’s not good timing: “No thank you, but I appreciate you thinking of me.”
- Eat 2 CUPS of veggies before your main course
- Really?? 2 cups? Yep. Have a huge salad or regular salad and another veggie. Fill your tummy with that and you’ll be less inclined to binge on pasta.
- Drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces
- I’ve been trying to do this for almost a year now, and this one is a bit obligatory, but when I do it and then DON’T…I notice the difference.
- Move your body
- Obviously, an hour/day at your gym with an intense workout would be stellar, but… are you kidding me?? This homeschooling-work-at-home-mom-of-4 don’t got time for that! To get started I recommend my ladies begin with 7 minutes to move your body. You can do anything for 7 minutes. Just 2 of your favorite songs. I’m working up to 30 minutes of movement a day. Some days it’s yoga, some days it’s walking, often youtube fitness.
- Breathe and slow down
- When I stopped ignoring my body, I noticed when I truly should relish in a dessert, or need a small protein boost of peanut butter and banana. It’s when we push too hard or deny too often or blame for an indulgence that we build a wall with ourselves. Trust yourself, and be gentle as you re-learn.
- Track your progress
- This can be a tricky one, and find what is inspirational for you. I set myself a goal to lose 1 pound a week until mid-April. I KNOW I can lose weight. I’ve made charts before. This time, I have a sparkly new planner, and a teal marker I’m writing in on the days I weigh myself. I know there are so many ways to measure progress. This is just my tool right now for it’s ease.
- Set a word of intention
- Every year since 2016 I’ve set a word of intention for the year, to guide my thoughts and words and goals and self-perception. You can download my free guide to choose yours here.
Life is bigger than a bathroom scale.
Bigger than what you put in your mouth.
Life means more than clothing size.
When I let the gravity of self-shaming around weight go… that’s half the challenge. It feels possible and almost sure already.
At the end of it all, body image and weight… it’s all going to be inconsequential. They are all just tools to helping us bring our SHINE to the world. We are changing the world in so many ways.
So for today, I feel FREE from the shackles of self-loathing. I feel FREE from body disapproval.
I only have some guidelines for my body, as a gift TO my body, to help me keep feeling FREE.
Whatever it is that your soul is telling you do do right now, you already have the answers. It’s a matter of getting quiet enough to hear them.
Till next time, my friend.
p.s. I’ve lost 3 pounds this week so far. Woot woot! I’m not going to adjust my goal (1lb/week for 15 weeks) so I have lots of wiggle room and no pressure to perform.
It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Side note: Do you want to hear more of my journey as we go?