I am too fat, too skinny, my hips are too big, my hips are too small, my boobs are too small, my ears stick out too much, my nose is too small, too big…. You see where I am going with this!
Recently while out window shopping, I decided to try on some clothes. I am obsessed with leather so was delighted to find a little black leather dress in Warehouse. While I had no intention of buying it, I did have some time on my hands.
What followed was a group message to my friends. I explained how excited I was that I had found an amazing dress and to my shock and delight it was a roomy size 12. I was bemused, but no one else was. Replies came with ‘well obviously you are a size 12, in fact are you not a size 10’, to which I laughed off.
Later that evening when chatting in person. It turns out how I view myself and how others view me, are quite different. They see me as a size 10 to 12, I see myself as a size 12 to 14. This lead to a discussion on body dysmorphia.
Body dysmorphia can be as small as obsessing over a miniscule scar, that you think the whole world is looking at. To as big as having gained two dress sizes and still squeezing into those skinny jeans. Why do we not admit to ourselves we have gained too much or lost too much weight? Because this means we must accept it. This also means we need to look at our lives and bring about change and as we know change can be the most daunting task of all.
In my case, I failed to see myself as a smaller size as I was so used to being slightly bigger. Why did I do this? For the same reason as above, change can be difficult to identify with. Like most people, we are easily able to identify the negatives but often fail to see the positives.
Why can we not look at ourselves and be confident and happy with how we look. Often we are told we should look at ourselves in the mirror and identify what is beautiful. Even just one thing. But this can be extremely difficult to do. Every time I look in the mirror I fail to see beauty, instead I just suck in my tummy in a ridiculous obsessive way.
Recently I came across an article by Sarah Jenks, a life and body coach. She states that not everything in life is very beautiful. However we can still love it. My grubby old bag sitting beside me is not very beautiful but it fits my laptop perfectly and so I love it. Your old but ‘doesn’t owe me a penny’ car may not be beautiful but you love that. You’re not so cute family dog may not be beautiful but you love him. This got me thinking, my body may not be perfect beauty, and it will never be a Victoria Secret model form of beauty. However Sarah Jenks is correct, I do love it. And this is why.
I love it because….
It is never sick
It is full of energy
It is fit
It is strong
It can run 10km (on a good day)
It can do double unders
It has good legs
It has a heart
It has a soul
It can meditate
It houses a decent enough sized brain!
It looks good in size 12 clothes
Okay getting overly confident maybe!!! But it’s my body and only I know what it is capable of doing. So do you look at yourself in the mirror and have a slight form of body dysmorphia. Have you lost weight recently but still wear your baggy but comfy jumpers, have you gained weight recently but refuse to admit it. Whatever it is that’s going on in your life. Look at yourself in the mirror, be honest with where you are at, but no matter where you are at. You can tell yourself what it is you love about your body. We tear ourselves down all the time, why not just try for a little bit to build ourselves up.
Negative thoughts, bring negative feelings, bring negative actions. However positive thoughts, bring positive feelings, bring positive actions.
Your turn, I love my body because…..
An absolute huge thank you to my best friend and amazing artist Carmel Behan. Carmel collaborated with me on this post and created the sketches. For me they capture exactly how I used to feel about my body. Check out her page to get a flavour of her work. She is also available on Instagram.
Thanks for taking the time to read
The Wholesome Nut