I used to hate my body.
Almost all of my thoughts about my body were negative—and harsh! I constantly told myself how ugly I was, how awful I looked compared to everyone else, how weak, soft, and poorly functioning my body was.
I focused almost exclusively on my body’s flaws.
And for years, I struggled with losing and regaining the same 30 pounds over and over again.
Oh, I knew how to diet and exercise, but I just couldn’t make the changes stick.
After 35 years of struggling with my weight, I knew there had to be another way.
So I tried something drastic.
I decided to change my thoughts.
It wasn’t until I started changing my thoughts that I started to see lasting changes in my body. Since 2009, I’ve lost 34 pounds–and best of all, I’ve kept it off!
Today, I love my body!
I love my body and life more than I thought possible.
Believe it or not, your body reflects the thoughts you are thinking.
And you may be seriously underestimating the incredible power of your thoughts.
Reflect on the kinds of thoughts you think about your body—and life!—most of the time.
Are you primarily focused on how fabulous your body is, how hard it’s working on your behalf, how beautiful it is, how strong and fit it is, and how much you love it?
Or are you saying things like I used to say? Are you frustrated and angry at your body because it doesn’t look like you want it to look, or how you think it should look? Are you on the verge of giving up on ever getting the body you want?
When you look at your body, does it physically reflect your predominate thoughts?
Now think about the person whose body you admire most.
Got someone in mind?
What thoughts do you suppose they think most about their bodies? How do you think they feel most often when the look in the mirror? How much time do they spend appreciating what they have verses complaining about what they don’t?
“That’s different,” you might say. “They started off with a beautiful body.”
So did you.
Think back to when you were a kid. There was probably a time when you didn’t even think about your body. You just ran and played because it was fun! It felt good to move your body.
Now think about when you started being self-critical. For some of you, that might be when you were very young. For others, maybe it wasn’t until you were in your teens, 20s, or even 30s.
Chances are it started off really small.
I remember first being embarrassed about my body when I was just 5 years old. I was a tomboy who always had scabs on my knees from falls and crashes on my bike, and I vividly remember trying to pull my knee socks up as high as they would go to cover them up.
Covering up my body was something I did for a lot of years!
Whether you are aware of it or not, a thought must come first before you experience anything. Your thoughts truly are the foundation of every part of your life.
Thoughts also translate into actions. If you hate your body, how likely are you to eat nutritious foods? If you compare your body negatively to everyone else’s, how likely are you to join a gym and go workout? If you judge it as weak, sickly, or ill-functioning, what is the quality of your self-care?
If you want to create—and maintain—a beautiful body, the real key is to begin by shifting your thoughts.
Begin by deciding to choose more supportive thoughts about your body. Create a list of the parts of your body that work well, that are attractive, and that are working hard on your behalf.
Often when I ask a women to name one thing about her body she can appreciate, she comes up blank. She literally can’t name one thing.
So start with the basics. For instance:
- Your heart is beating in and out and blood is pumping through your veins
- Your lungs are taking in life-giving oxygen.
- Your brain is functioning well enough for you to read these words.
- Your body is taking in nutrients and fluids.
- Your bones are supporting your body.
- Your feet and legs are supporting your every step.
- Your hands are helping you accomplish everything in your life.
- Your hips are supporting you as you sit and read this.
- Your spine is holding you upright.
How often do you acknowledge and appreciate these amazing things about your body?
Now choose one thing that you find attractive about your body.
- Your strong and capable hands.
- The delicate curve of your lips or eyebrows.
- The way your hair falls, it’s color, or texture.
- The sensuous shape of your calves.
- The amazing color and sparkle of your eyes.
- How your smile lights up your face.
Of these 15 ways to see your body as beautiful, I bet more of them applied to you than you expected, right?
Start with what you can appreciate about your body. As you focus more on those things, you’ll automatically find more things to appreciate.
Soon you’ll be appreciating the extra distance you can walk, the beautiful muscles that are emerging in your legs, and how fabulous you look from behind in your new pair of jeans!
When you begin to focus on things about your body that are working well, that are how you want them to be, that are beautiful, the more your body will begin to reflect these new thoughts.
Your thoughts lead your life. Shift your thoughts consistently in the direction you want to go and your body—and life—will follow.
Together we can do it!
My blog is moving to my new website LoveYourWaySlim.com. For the next month, I will post both here and there. To keep following my posts after January 15, you will need to follow my new blog. I look forward to continuing the journey with you!