We all know that I’m a Yoga Girl podcast fan.
She has new episodes released each Friday, but I find myself going back to her old episodes from time to time.
The ones that really resonate with me.
One episode in particular that I enjoy re-listening to is her “body shaming” episode.
She talks about her favorite shirt. A simple tank top that is comfortable to wear. Something that she throws on to make her feel good. In Aruba.
But, somehow, when that same shirt travels with her to Sweden, it is no longer comfortable. It feels tight. And clings to all the wrong places. It doesn’t bring out the confidence that it does when she wears it in Aruba.
How is it that the same exact shirt worn by the same exact person over the course of one week could bring out such different emotions? How is it that a simple shirt could somehow shut her confidence down when she’s wearing it in Sweden?
It is so much about the environment we are in.
Her mind does a complete flip when she lands in Sweden. More fashionable people. Moms that are “skinnier” than her. The same exact body that she housed in Aruba somehow feels so large and dominating when that body is in Sweden.
And I resonate with this so much.
Because when I’m here, in Harrogate, living my day-to-day life, I feel great. I feel confident and when I look in the mirror, I feel happy. And strong. I don’t feel like I’m constantly pulling my shirt down to cover a little extra belly flab. (Even though it may still be there). I don’t feel like my brain is being fogged with negative thoughts about my appearance. Because, honestly, I feel healthy and happy.
But I’m not going to be hiding out in Harrogate for the rest of my life.
In a week, we’ll be flying to Cancun for Hema’s wedding.
In a month, we’ll be flying back to California for winter break.
And, come June, we’ll be out of this place and moving somewhere else.
This body will be coming with me to all of those places.
The same body that is right here. Sitting in front of this computer. Typing this blog post.
The same exact body.
But I feel like my perception of my body will be so different depending on the people I’m around or the environment I’m in.
It’s easy to tell yourself you’re being crazy and not to overthink such trivial things.
But it’s difficult if you have had challenges with self-image in the past.
Somehow, those old, shitty thoughts creep back up into your mind and take over your confidence. And gnaw at the growth you may have made between the past and the present.
One of the things that Rachel recommends is to get IN to your body. In order to get out of your mind, dive deep within your body. And whatever action it is that makes you and your body feel strong and confident now is the thing that you should rely on when you’re feeling self-doubt.
For me, push-ups make me feel freaking a-mazing. Mainly because I could never do the real ones before and now I can hammer them out like a champion.
So, on days when I feel the negativity come back, I just get down on the floor and do a quick 15-20 push-ups to remind me just how far I’ve come.
Maybe this all sounds silly.
Or, maybe this sounds like it really isn’t a revelation. Like, duh. When you feel bad, do something that makes you feel good.
I just feel like it was helpful for me. To hear that I’m not alone in this feeling. And to have a tangible strategy to use when those thoughts make their way back into my mind.
Because I love this body of mine so much.
And I want to continue loving it. Wherever it goes.
Questions of the Day:
- Do you feel that certain environments make you more timid or uncomfortable?
- What strategies do you use to help you get out of your mind and back INTO your body?