Stop Lying To Yourself

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I’ve written posts before about denial and how it holds me back. I went to a yoga retreat a while ago and we talked about the key to healing any part of your life or succeeding in places you have failed before. It all came down to one simple thing…getting real with yourself. Sometimes it is painful to say the truth out loud so we find a way to twist the truth to help us accept it better. The key is admitting that we all tell ourselves bullshi$ stories and it is those stories that sabotage our chance at real growth.

Recently, my eating has spiraled out of control. I kept telling myself my pants were feeling tighter because I was bloated when the real truth is I had completely fallen off the wagon of sticking to a reasonable amount of calories. Today I stepped on the scale and the bs story was ripped right out from underneath me. I avoided that scale for weeks but deep down I was well aware of what was happening. Avoiding the scale led me away from my goal and all that manipulative self talk did nothing but hurt me in the end. I’ve been down this road before and today I make a new commitment to stay honest with myself.

So today I challenge you to confess one of your bs stories. I look forward to hearing them.

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When’s the Last Time You Stepped on the Scale?

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Sometimes you have to have the courage to step on the scale. How in the world could you possibly know if you are reaching your goals if you don’t take the opportunity to be honest with yourself about how your doing? It’s easy to wander around aimlessly claiming to strive for a specific end result but if we don’t evaluate the steps we are taking to get there, wandering around is all we may ever achieve. Which brings me back to why I stepped on the scale in the first place.

I have been doing workout challenges for two months now. I went from basically laying on the couch to working out hard for short increments every single day. I feel great. My body has changed and more importantly my mind has transformed. I feel strong and confident and committed until I stepped on the scale. All that hard work disappeared in one short moment. That could have been it for me. That could have been the moment in time I allowed myself the excuse to duck out and quit. Guess what? That’s not happening. Instead, I was able to get real with myself and admit the truth. Yes I have been working out consistently hard but guess what? I have been eating consistently hard as well. So today I am committing myself to both working out and maintaining healthy eating. I have been very successful in both but never at the same time. So, my new challenge is to put it all together and get the best results I have ever seen.

The lesson here is to check in with yourself. Whether it’s weight related or any other type of goal. Make sure the steps you are taking will put you on the path that will lead to you successfully achieving your goal.

You Want A Happy Ending?

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As I was sitting in Starbucks yesterday, I heard that familiar ding from the inside of my purse. It was a text message from my husband asking if we should go out to eat to celebrate the first day of school. The image appeared almost instantaneously. There I was almost three years from the day, sitting on my closet floor fighting back tears. I can see myself slumped against the door, hating every inch of myself. It had been a great summer filled with celebration. A trip to Greece, Malibu buckets and chips at the pool, brats, ice cream, burgers, dessert. The list went on an on but it was quite a celebration. I’m not sure when the word celebration became synonymous with food, but it sure did.

I remember trying to button my pants that day. I remember feeling the sheer panic and thinking, could I have really packed on THAT much weight? I hit rock bottom right around the same time my own bottom hit that floor. I never wanted to come out of that closet again.

I’ve had a body image distortion disorder for as long as I can remember. I was always ashamed of my body. I hated everything about it and to top it all off, I was a gymnast. Imagine having to parade in front of the entire high school in a skimpy, little, revealing leotard. It was excruciating. My body was changing everyday and everyone I knew had a front row ticket to see.

What I learned in that closet that day was that I was living to eat. I wasn’t eating to live. I was literally feeding every insecurity I had to try and comfort myself from the reality of the things I never faced. We don’t even realize how much our eating relates to our mental state. Stuff it down, memories…food. Then do it some more. Then tell ourself that food makes us happy when that same evening it makes is completely loathe ourselves. The mind can be so damaging if we fall for its manipulative tricks. It can make the simplest flaw or memory or experience into the Grand Canyon when it’s simply a tiny hole.

It was time to remove the damage I had done one thought at a time, one pound at a time. I found yoga then and healing and a smaller size of pants. It was all connected and I never realized it before. When one thing was out of balance, it knocked everything else out of balance too.

I looked in the mirror today and I smiled. I have a confidence that took me 44 years to develop. Even with some parts sagging, others wrinkled, I feel beautiful for the first time. My skin is a happy home for what is on the inside. I am so grateful for that day in the closet that gave me the strength, commitment. courage and real desire to finally make that change. There was no diet on earth that could fix me. I had to start with my thoughts and find the compassion and care that would help me love myself just as I am. I had to own every thought, action, decision, choice and I had to forgive myself. I had to let go of this perfect image of who I thought I should be and allow myself to be completely. I had to listen to my own voice and worry about making choices that would lead to my own happiness and stop worrying about what anyone else wanted for me. I had to live. I had to choose and I had to start being accountable for the direction my life would take me in. I had to look myself in the mirror and say, you are enough. The truth is, I am enough. I have always been enough.

I hope that sharing my own story will make a bell go off for someone else. Just like a heard the sound in my purse at Starbucks yesterday, I hope this helps you hear the sound in your own head begging for the change only you can make. There is hope. Change is possible. There are happy endings. Guess who decides?

How Far Are You Willing To Go?

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It worries me that people are so unhappy in their own skin, that they will do anything to become someone else. I am not judging at all, please don’t misunderstand what I’m trying to say. Why is it that people cannot love themselves the way they were born, the way they were meant to be? I had a coming to Jesus with myself about a year ago. I had put on about 15 pounds and I remember sitting on the floor crying because I couldn’t button a single pair of pants. I realized that I had to love myself at 130 pounds as much as I did at 115. I am happy to report that I got that weight back off but l will let you in on a little secret. When I look in the mirror, no matter how little I weigh, I always see myself at the heavier weight. I remember not too long ago,  I saw a picture of myself and I honestly couldn’t believe how tiny I looked. That is not the girl I see in the mirror. Why? I have no idea. I don’t have a degree in psychology but I have come to understand that the mind plays tricks. Somewhere in my life, I came to the conclusion that I had to be a certain weight to feel good and be attractive. Silly huh? And the mirror is a reflection of my fear and insecurity. The secret is to accept and love yourself just as you are every single day. I’ve learned to be grateful for the body I have every day. As for that mirror, I know it lies and I remind myself to practice self love the days the reflection back is not so positive. 

It’s so important to remember that we are all the same. We all have insecurities and wish we could change something about ourselves to be more comfortable with who we are. Ask yourself this question though, when will enough be enough? How much will you have to change before you are finally satisfied? How far will you have to go before you realize that until you love and accept yourself on the inside, you will never be satisfied with the outside. Just something to think about.

Don’t Go In The fitting Room!

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I did today what most woman dread to do. I walked into Dillard’s, scooped up several bathing suits and ventured into the fitting room to try them on. For years I have been self conscious about my body. I would stand in front of that mirror and magnify every single flaw. That’s exactly what the mirror was for me, a magnifying glass. I would walk in feeling hopeful and come out feeling completely disgusted and depressed. But today was a much different story. I picked out colorful suits. I walked away from the plain black suits that I could always hide away in and chose the brightest, most colorful suits I could find. One after the other, I put piece after piece on and loved them all. I reminded myself with each new suit that I am the same weight now as I was the day I graduated from high school. I have given birth twice and lived 43 years in this tired body. And you know what? It rocks. I’m not perfect. I am full of flaws but this time I focused on the whole and not the individual parts that have caused me such stress over the last several years. So, now I have a whole new fun wardrobe of swimming attire and I am looking forward to wearing them proudly in public. This is my body. It is who I am and I can choose to embrace it or choose to be ashamed of it. I am the best version of me that I can be and it doesn’t matter what the girl lying on the chair next to me looks like. There is no reason to compare. There is a great freedom that comes with self-acceptance. There is freedom in being cured from the disease to always want to be someone different or be something greater than we are. Be you and be happy. The bottom line is this. Your body looks exactly the same in a plain black suit or a crazy, colorful one. Buy the crazy one and wear it proudly.

I Weigh What?

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A great blogger reminded me of something yesterday. Lately, I have been in a small patch of negativity quicksand. The more attention I give to it, the deeper and deeper I sink. I think we all have these little spells of many feelings and that they are there to remind us that we have to keep things in balance. We have to drag out that big scale of life and honestly and openly put ourselves on it. It asks us some pretty hard questions and holds us accountable for which way that needle points. The lesson here is this. Don’t settle for remaining in these patches of life that make you lose the grip on who you really are. Dig a little deeper and get to the root of whatever it is that has you feeling a particular way. I have found the root of mine and it is control or lack there of it. When I want something to desperately change, and I focus on exactly what I do not want, life brings me more of the same. So today, I will focus on what I do want and maybe, just maybe I will have a better day. So, pull out your scale and jump on it, and remember to keep things balanced too.