Recently, I came across an article about loving yourself while you’re losing weight. I shared it with some friends and found that it resonated with several of them.
In a society that’s obsessed with beauty and youth, even just the attempt to lose weight can stir up all kinds of emotions relating to vulnerability, self-worth, and fear.
For me, this has been especially true because my weight gain started during a period of time when my life essentially felt like it was imploding. It seemed like I was experiencing all of the major life changes at once, from moving to changes in my career, friendships, priorities. My relationship was becoming increasingly miserable and on top of that I was running into difficulties with several family members.
I was depressed and not coping in the most positive or healthy ways.
Of course, I’m not exactly the type to just lie down and give up. It’s been a hard, long road, but as I started facing a lot of those issues, I was able to pick up healthier ways to deal with life’s hardships which, in turn, allowed me the time, resources and emotional fortitude to start taking care of myself again.
Dropping the extra weight (20 pounds down, another 20 to go) has been nothing short of an exercise in letting go of whatever no longer suits me. Which turns out, is a lot of things.
There’s the obvious things, like stress-eating every carbohydrate on the planet when I’ve had a hard day. That’s out the window now. Alcohol is gone. As is candy (I will miss you, gummy bears) and any processed food I bought out of either convenience or comfort.
Those things have been replaced with morning runs in the park, yoga, spa water, relaxing with friends, crafts and meditation. I’m an exciting person, I know.
The biggest thing I had to give up, however, is people-pleasing. That addiction, that need to be all things, to everyone, all the time. I have damn near depleted myself trying to be there for everyone else whilst essentially ignoring all of my own needs. Not a habit that’s exactly conducive to mental or physical well-being.
Now, instead of putting myself last, I am committed to being the best friend, the best girlfriend, the best daughter, sister, dog-mom, what-have-you…while still walking in my truth, going after what I want in life and putting myself first.
I don’t know if it’s normal to be this reflective while losing a few pounds, but I’m glad that I’m working through this. As I continue this healthy journey, what else do I need to let go of? What might I pick up in it’s place? What else do I need to become my happiest, healthiest self? Considering the fact that I woke up in the middle of the night and ending up writing this post, I’m guessing there’s a lot more work to be done.
Take care of yourself,