As I go through this year, I remind myself of all the things I should be grateful for. I remind myself that there was a time I didn’t have a roof over my head, or that I lived out of a suitcase for 4 months. I remind myself that despite the overly casual time I had at University, it was a privilege that not many others could have experienced. All of these moments in life are lessons learned and are chapters in a book that constantly shape the next steps that I take. So when I find myself upset at my body, I attempt to compare that to the largest moments of my life and I try to appreciate that all those lessons I learned are because of who I am and not because of how I looked.
It’s a hard thing to embrace yourself in a time where everyone’s just trying to look like one another. The hardest thing I found (and I imagine many people feel this way) is the inability to see myself through another perspective. I spent (and still do spend) most of my time staring at my “flaws” and wishing them away or getting terrible anxiety over what a random person on the street will think of my not-so-flat stomach. I fail to remember that there are so many things far more vital and far more important in my life. I’m not saying that this is a justification to do nothing active whilst complaining about your body – but I am saying that if the key is just living an active lifestyle and your body still isn’t “model level”, then there might be something flawed in your reason to be active.
There have been many times I’ve criticized my journey of weight loss because it hasn’t resulted in an expectation set in my head. For some reason, this then meant that I was terrible, that I was less of a person and that everything I did and had was worth less than everyone else. It’s an unhealthy mindset and I’ve relied very heavily on Richard to remind myself that the actions I do, my morals, my personality doesn’t change with my size. I also recently read a blog of a friend of mine (http://carleycarter.tumblr.com) which stated that whenever she feels self-conscious, she gets naked and stares down exactly what upsets her. Our insecurities and what makes us upset is linked to just this physical “thing”, this physical thing that doesn’t have any influence on the type of person we are. This resonated with me so hard. It was a simple piece of logic I had failed to realise.
By no means am I now cured of all my insecurities with my body, but for the first time I feel equipped with the right knowledge to fight back against the self-loathing devil that sits on my left shoulder when a dress doesn’t fit properly. It was only a few weeks ago that I felt unburdened by the knowledge that it’s okay to be a size 12 and no longer a size 8-10. Life has its dips and hills and not everything is just a flat playing field. Instead of embracing my body now, I made myself unhappier by continuing to buy Size 8 clothes and then never wearing them because it was too uncomfortable to sit in. It left me feeling like I had no clothes to wear when in reality I have a 3-pane wardrobe spilling with them.
My motto for this year is exactly what this title says; “My Worth Is Not My Weight”. Everything I am motivated to do this year (it’s a lot!) is because I’m aspiring to do and be better. In turn, I hope I’ll be rewarded by a healthier mindset on my body. If you ever find yourself upset at what you look like…stare at your reflection and know that there’s more to you than what you see.