While you’re following a long diet, body positivity is something that can come and go. When it’s not there, it can be tough to remain upbeat and optimistic about where things are heading. After all, when you’re talking months or years of effort, instead of days or weeks, it’s a lot of work.
Throughout the time I’ve been losing weight, I think about food, exercise, sleep and other factors all the time. They’re always somewhere on my mind – front or back. It’s a lot. Especially because I know why those factors are always on my mind. It’s because I haven’t reached my healthy body or goal weight yet. I’m not there. Sometimes, when I’m not at my best, my mind translates that into “you’re flawed, ugly, and never going to get there.” Not a good feeling.
I love food. I especially have a sweet tooth. While I’ve found a way to be able to eat what I love – within reason – and still lose weight, it does mean that I need to play an active role in my own body positivity. After all, if you think I want to stop at one cupcake, you’re wrong. If you think one scoop of ice cream is the portion I’d consider ideal, no again. I don’t just love to have my cake and eat it, too. I love to eat enough for me, you, and the person sitting next to you. I want to have all the cake and eat it, too!
So here’s the problem. If I eat as much as I want, I feel bad about what I’ve done to my body and all the hard efforts I’ve been making to lose weight. If I don’t eat as much as I want, I feel proud of myself most of the time, and essentially satisfied, too…until I don’t. There are days when I just feel like I’m never going to reach my goal and all I do is stop myself from having what I want.
On those days, I need to take a step back and refocus on body positivity. That one theme is one of the most important things that I can focus on not only while I’m trying to lose weight but also afterward when I maintain my results. I need to remind myself that I’m in the middle of an effort to achieve my ideal health but that doesn’t mean that I’m ugly now. Just because I haven’t reached my goal, it doesn’t mean that I’m somehow less than what I will be.
After all, even when I reach my goal, I don’t imagine that I’ll look in the mirror and think I’m perfect. Instead, I remind myself of all the great things I’m doing, of all the things I can do now that I couldn’t back when I started, and of how far I’ve come. I may not look like models or actresses, but that’s fine, because I look like me. I’m not changing myself to look like them. I’m changing myself to improve the way I feel and to make sure I’ll stay healthy for as long as possible. By taking this step to focus on body positivity, I put my mind back in the right place to keep going and still feel great.