It seems like almost everyone had a nice weekend doing absolutely nothing! 🙂 Those are the best, when you can just be at home, relax, get small tasks done and just give yourself a mental break. I like to have Saturday as our “do nothing” day and then on Sunday I become super productive. I guess I can’t stay too relaxed for too long!
Some of you have commented or emailed me after a few of my posts wondering if people I know in real life read my blog. The answer is yes. For now, my mom , my sister Myra and Jason all read my blog. I also have a few friends who read it as well. I’m not close enough with my coworkers to share this much of me! I don’t have anything I need to hide from my friends and family, and if anything, writing about my struggles helps me become more confident in talking to my family. If there is something you are struggling with, I encourage you to talk to someone. There are plenty of issues that we cannot deal with on our own.
I hope you aren’t all tired of hearing about this book. You can read my other post *here* This book really has given me tools to use when I am feeling anxious, and it also explains anxiety in a way that makes me feel “normal” – that I’m not the only one to think this way.
I was most excited to dive into this chapter. The author begins by stating that body shame can start very early. She tells a story about a teacher telling girls that “God made canaries yellow and elephants gray” – the teacher went on to explain that regular sized girls could choose bright colors but that large girls should choose solid, dark colors. She compared the larger girls to elephants!
The author explains that we feel body shame for different reasons: we are overweight, underweight, out of shape, our doctor tells us we need to lose weight, our family/friends tell us we need to lose weight, we see pictures in magazines and on tv and think that is the norm, we might be unpopular and think our weight/looks are to blame or we see the millions of commercials and ads for makeup/clothes/shoes shown on unrealistic bodies. Or, someone makes a statement (like the teacher in that example) that causes us to look at our bodies in a negative light.
I feel shame about my body because once again, I have ridiculous expectations for myself that I cannot meet. I see the images in magazines, and although I remind myself over and over that those women are not real (photoshopped beyond recognition). I also remind myself that everyone is different – some women carry extra weight in their hips, some in their waists, some women are short, some are tall, etc.
The author tells us that we need to embrace our differences. She also said that we need to do the best with what we have and move on. There is no reason to sit and dwell on our imperfections — that gets us nowhere. Look at your strengths: are you a good friend? A loving daughter/son/wife/husband? Are you a hard worker? Look at your body: what do you like about it? Start to appreciate yourself.
I encourage you to take a look at Tina’s posts entitled “Gifts of the Body” that are a part of her 30 Days of Reflection for Self Love:
If you feel shame about yourself or your body, I hope you take a moment to think about what you do like about yourself, whether those traits are on the outside or on the inside.
I also encourage you to read Katie’s post “Loving Little Katie”. She wrote about how she does not treat herself as her own best friend. In that post she wrote “any time I’m tempted to call myself ugly or fat or whatever, I have to tell it to this Katie” with a picture of herself as a child. This was very powerful for me to read! Here is a picture of me as a child:
How could I call this child fat, ugly, worthless, lazy and boring? And yet I tell myself those things! Katie I loved your idea and I am going to use it! I could never tell Little Holly those awful things, and I think this imagery will really help.
Did you catch Thintervention last night?
Jackie spoke to the clients about “talking to your little self” — she even had them bring in old pictures! They each had to talk to their younger selves. What would you say to your younger self?
What are some things you like about yourself? I like that I am a very loyal friend and a hard worker. I like that I am a good wife to Jason and I try to take care of many of the household work (laundry, dishes, cooking, etc). I like that I am strong: that I have completed a marathon and that I can exercise intensely. I like that I am caring and loving, that I am funny and ridiculous.
On a less serious note, I’m making a pizza tonight for dinner and watching The Biggest Loser premiere! Although I can’t stand certain aspects of the show, I love to watch it!