Is Your Body STOPPING You?!

Beautiful!!! HOW ARE YOU?!

Let's get right down to business because this is super super important. Is your body image holding you back from fully living your life? Do you find yourself thinking or saying things like:

  • I'll go shopping for new clothes once I lose weight. Until then I wear what I have.
  • I can't look for a new job right now--I look like crap. Once I get fit I'll be able to finally get that job I want.
  • I'm not even going to try and date right now...I have to lose weight first.
  • I would go in for that summer house share if only I liked the way I look in shorts.
  • Once I lose {X amount of] pounds then I'll be able put on a bathing suit.

(Side note real quick--there's a transformational homework assignment for you at the end of this post! I don't want you to miss it! Okay, carry on!)

And there's hundreds of other examples along these lines...examples of us hating on our bodies and WAITING TO LIVE OUR LIVES until some future date when we've hit the magic number on the scale.

I know I've done it. Countless times. I have had thoughts like these and they literally hurt. I have actually turned down invitations to do fun things because I was not feeling good in my body. And BTW--I've felt this way even when I've been thin and fit however in my mind I looked like crap. UGH.

This is so heartbreaking. If I could add up the times that I held back in life because I felt bad about my body--OR times that I simply couldn't fully enjoy myself at a fun event because I was feeling self-conscious--I'm sure that it would equal YEARS of my life.

You know what? I CALL BULLSH*T.

Not bullsh*t to you. YOU ARE AWEOME. But bullsh*t to the culture and society that from a very young age feed us the idea that unless we have the "perfect" body, we simply aren't good enough. I don't have to give you all the examples of ways in which girls and women are exposed to this idea through magazines, billboards, television, movies and nowadays, social media. We can't turn our head without being bombarded by this message. It's so so painful.

AND WE HAVE BOUGHT INTO IT. Oh yes we have, hook, line and sinker. And I bet you that many of you reading this right now are doing this weird thing of totally agreeing with me while still thinking, "But I still need to get my body in shape before I [fill in the blank]" --it's a different thing for all of us but it all adds up to NOT LIVING OUR LIVES FULLY and NOT THINKING WE ARE GOOD ENOUGH. You know how I know you're thinking that way? Because I thought that way my whole life.

I'm a feminist and I will yell from the mountain top that women don't need to conform to the bullsh*t beauty standard set forth by the patriarchy in order to hold us down and hold us back and keep us spending money (TONS of money) on products that we don't need...but for years I ranted all that while still hating my own body and believing I needed to change it in order to be considered:

  • Pretty
  • Successful
  • Worthy
  • Likable
  • Lovable
  • Worth listening to
  • Allowed to speak up

And honestly, the list goes on and on. It's not that I didn't have many times where I was fully engaged and happy in my life, but there were also way too many times when the hatred and disappointment in my body were absolutely CRUSHING TO MY SOUL.

THAT'S NOT OKAY! Can you see that? IT IS SO NOT OKAY! In the simplest of terms, I'm a human being on the planet and I'm allowed to live fully expressed no matter what I look like! The thought/belief that I have to look a certain way in order to be considered valuable is crazy and depressing.

HOW MANY WOMEN HOLD THEMSELVES BACK BECAUSE OF THEIR BODIES?

WHAT WOULD THE WORLD LOOK LIKE IF THAT WERE TO CHANGE?

It would look CRAZY AWESOME DIFFERENT, that's what.

So what does it take to change this way of being that is so flippen destructive to ourselves and our lives?

It requires that we shift the paradigm around our WORTH. We need to realize that our WORTH and VALUE is not in the way we look. I'm not saying we should all of a sudden reject everything, stop showering and wear a potato sack every day. No. We are allowed to adorn ourselves and dress the way we like to and feel beautiful FOR OURSELVES (which of course translates to the outside world). I'm all for that. However, we as women need to truly throw off the shackles of BEAUTY IS OUR WORTH and get clear that WE ARE TOTAL BADASSES THAT CAN CHANGE THE WORLD. And then we need to get out there and do it!

So here's your homework:

  1. Ask five people in your life that love you what they value most about you (hint: none of them are going to say, "I really value that you have a killer body). Write these things down.
  2. Write down the top five things you truly value about yourself--the things you do, your ways of being in the world that you feel really proud of. If you can't think of five, that's okay--write down as many as you're able. Even if it is just one thing, write it down! Own it!
  3. Think of one way you let your body STOP you from LIVING FULLY and GO DO THAT. For example, if you've stopped yourself from buying a new pair of jeans until you lose some weight, go out and buy a new pair of jeans that fit you great and that you feel good in! DON'T WAIT! FEEL GREAT!

After you've done your homework, please post your results in the comments! Yay!

Let me tell you what you already know (even if you don't have this in your conscious mind, you know it way down deep in your soul):

YOU ARE MEANT TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

I am here to help you remember that. I am here to wake that part up inside of you. Because THE WORLD NEEDS YOU.

 

With love and empowerment,

Elijah

P.S. Please share this exercise with any of your fabulous women friends that you know would benefit!