Let’s rewind 3 years and go back to a day where I was trying on clothes in a changing room with unforgiving florescent lighting.
The mirrors had a clever (or horrible) positioning so that you could see every angle of your body including the back and sides. I could see every ripple of cellulite and every bulge of fat from the pressure of my bra and pants as I stood there.
I loathed what I saw.
To be dramatic about it, let me paint a visual:
If hate was visible, there would have been radioactive rays going from my eyes to my body.
I was staring at myself with hate, wishing my cellulite would just go away. Wishing that I could just slice off the fat that was packed to my body prompting my curves…
This was just one of the thousands of times that I felt so much hate towards every single part of my body.
During these times, self-love felt so far away. It wasn’t tangible. It wasn’t even something on my mind.
Now let’s fast forward a bit to my healing journey
My healing journey began with the idea of self-love.
After breaking down numerous times and literally not knowing what to do to make myself happy anymore, I hired a coach who specialised in spirituality and self-love.
I had got the stage where no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t stick to a diet for longer than one day and I ended up binge eating every day for months. I was unhappy. So depressed. So ashamed of myself. I didn’t know what to do anymore.
I so desperately wanted to be slim and toned again like I was before but I just couldn’t get there. I wondered if it was at all possible to not care so much about what I looked like and be happy…
Turns out that it is 10000% possible!
I read so many self-help books and one book that stood out to me was ‘You Can Heal Your Life’ by Louise Hay (which I highly recommend) and it got me thinking about how backwards my thoughts and behaviours were.
I used to think that once I lost the weight, then I could love my body.
But eventually, I realized that I had to love my body first and THEN I could lose weight.
Now let’s fast-forward to the present day.
After many ups and downs and quite a bumpy ride, I can say with confidence that I love my body and I totally accept my belly rolls and my cellulite.
I can catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror unexpectedly and, instead of thinking “omg I look disgusting,” I think… nothing.
(Note: I don’t think, “Oh hey I love those belly rolls and cellulite!” Because I don’t. But hateful thoughts don’t go through my mind, most days.)
I accept me for who I am.
I know that I am so worthy of love – especially from myself – just because I am alive.
I know that my body does not dictate my worth.
I know that my body works miracles every second to keep me alive and she wants me to be healthy and fit.
My body isn’t my enemy, she’s my best friend!
She’s awesome! She’s smart. She’s strong. She’s powerful. She loves me SO much and I return that love.
So what if she doesn’t look how I would prefer her to… I no longer abuse her by starving her and then force-feeding her.
If someone doesn’t find me attractive, so what…?! It’s not the end of the world because I have enough love for me without needing it from any external source.
Me and my body are on the same team and it feels so free to not worry about what I look like all the time I can’t even describe in words how epic it feels!
I want this for you too!
I know what self-hate and self-loathing is like.
I used to be so insecure about my body that I couldn’t have a shower or get undressed with the light on because I didn’t want to see myself.
If my boyfriend had surprised me with a holiday to the Caribbean the next week I legit wouldn’t have gone because I wouldn’t have time to lose weight!
Most people reading this have been there or are there right now.
And I’m sharing this story with you because we can overcome self-hate without losing weight first. I want to help you love yourself before you lose weight — not after.
I know how trapped and small and anxious and depressed self-disgust can feel.
It took me years to dig myself out of the hole, and I think the path towards freedom started the day I decided to give up dieting.
Because that was also the day I decided to end the war with myself.
This makes sense in retrospect.
By choosing to stop battling and fighting and forcing with myself, it was only natural that my thoughts began to soften, too.
I know that many of us are waiting until we lost weight first before we can even consider loving ourselves, but that’s putting the cart before the horse.
You need to be caring and compassionate and loving towards your body first, and let the rest follow.
Listen to your body, give her what she wants, and don’t overstuff her.
And when the desire to eat when you’re not hungry rolls around, you know what to do (Get curious, feel your feelings, give yourself time to decide what you want your actions to be with no judgement).
If body-love feels out of reach right now, that’s okay. It doesn’t come all at once. In fact, if you can have one fleeting moment of silence where the harsh internal critic pauses, that’s progress.
Here are some tips from healthline (So you know it’s not just me preaching about this!) on how to embrace self-love and to thank your body for the amzing miracle that she is!
It’s a long journey for many of us, and I’m honoured to be walking this path with you.
If you would like help with your self-love journey I can walk you hand in hand and get you to the other side.
Body confidence, self-love and food freedom are waiting for you, are you ready to take them?