I hate bad-body days. Like, with a red hot passion. If I could wave a magic wand for myself, I would presto myself no more bad-body days and then I would do a happy dance. It would be a very happy happy dance! I know, I know. Not possible. But a girl can dream… ;o)
I know I’m not the only one out there that understands this. In fact, most people, at some time or another, experience some sort of bad-body day. Some time where they feel dissatisfied and judge-y about their body in some way shape or form. I always wonder what is it that makes the difference between those of us who struggle under the bad-body day and those that don’t? And what is it about bad-body days that hold so much power?
Here’s what I’ve discovered about the power of bad-body days. They suck up all your energy and become your whole day. If you are really honest with yourself, on a bad-body day, how much of your energy is actually present, experiencing the day, and how much is focused on the size and shape of your body?
I’ll go first. Probably something like 10% present and 90% obsessing. I’m not exaggerating and I’m not kidding. Think about it. What is going on in your mind in the background of every conversation, every action, every thought? Beating yourself up for eating too much, eating wrong, missing your workout, not working out hard enough, every reason your body is wrong. Sound familiar?
And if you add up all the days you’ve had like this, what wins: bad-body days or days where you actually are present and living your fucking life? Again, I’ll go first. For me, bad-body days takes its hands down. You know those Mixed Martial Arts fights? (You might not if you don’t have someone around you that watches them too often. Basically it’s just people beating each other up.) Well, that’s how I feel after a bad-body day– like I lost in a total knockout with no contest about who the winner is (certainly not me). That’s the power of my bad-body days. Bummer, I know.
As far as why some of us struggle with these more than others? We can look at nature vs. nurture. We can look at traumatic experiences, we can look at our own personal, core-wiring that we came here with. It’s all of those and none of those or some combination of those. (Personal note here: I think it’s the combination. After all, we are complex creatures). But the bottom line? Nobody fucking knows for sure. How’s that for an answer? There is no conclusive answer.
But get this, the media and the diet industry have taken control and convinced us all that there is one and ONLY ONE answer. And that answer is to lose weight. Period. It will bring you joy, happiness, and all that you desire. But here is where I call bullshit. I’ve been heavier and I’ve been thinner and no matter what my size was I still question my ability to be a good mom, a good therapist, a good wife… a good person.
Weight loss is not the answer to all of your problems and fears. All it does is shrink the size of your body. It doesn’t guarantee happiness or success or an improved life.
That’s the truth. It’s not up to my brain or my willpower or my ability to consume 800 calories a day or to work out a shit-ton. My body is done with that. My body wants healthy and happy. My body doesn’t give a shit about skinny. My body cares about my survival. And survival is the only thing that lets me live my life and share my experience.
My ultimate goal is to have my body and mind collaborating for my highest good. But that also means I have to learn to manage bad-body days. This is why managing bad-body days actually matters– so you can have more days of the life you want and less of the life you don’t.
Next week, some ideas about how to actually achieve this!!!!
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