Home / Advice / That whole “self love” gig…

 

Self Love. Body Confidence. Body Positive. It’s a bit of a touchy subject, huh?

I hated myself until not that long ago. Hated my body, hated my mind. Hated what I was sure others thought of me. It’s been such a slow process to get back from that.

So much confidence. So much sass.

I watch my 7 year old daughter prance around the house, 100% confident in her body and what it can do. She will wear as few clothes as possible and loves to show off her dance moves and flexibility to anyone who will watch.
I’m making it my mission to protect that confidence in herself for as long as possible, cos once it’s gone, it’s SO hard to get back again, and that self confidence, that self love, is what makes her who she is. She is unapologetically HER. She knows she’s clever, she knows she’s funny and she loves to dance, so she just does it. It makes her happy. I don’t want her to ever lose any of that. She’s also a perfectionist and I know that the minute she realises other peoples thoughts of her might be a “thing” I know it could all fall over, and fast.

We are all born with self confidence, (otherwise how would we even learn to walk?). But over time, and with outside influences, we lose that, some to a higher degree than others.

So how do we get back to feeling this way?

For me, it’s definitely a work in progress. I confess, I still try on an outfit, scrutinize it from EVERY angle in the mirror, make sure I can sit without my ass crack hanging out, does my mum tum look bigger? Is the muffin top smaller in this top, or that one? Often I will change outfits at least once until I find something I’m happier with.

Like I said. A work in progress.

But I’ve also come a long way. I mentioned in a video last year, that until the summer before last, my summer wardrobe consisted of baggy tshirts, and long baggy denim shorts, because god forbid I show anything above my knees or elbows.

I was hot and miserable. When I decided to make the shorts shorter and more fitted, and wear cooler tops, no one but me noticed. To wear togs with my boardies, instead of a baggy tshirt, no one gave a shit, no one died, no one pointed and laughed.

But I felt so much cooler, and in turn, so much happier in myself. And something changed.

It kind of started something. I’m slowly clearing my wardrobe of clothes that make me feel frumpy and “mumsy”, and replacing them with things that have a more flattering cut, not all my clothes are black these days. I get my eyebrows done more regularly, and get the mo’ waxed. These things might seem superficial, but they also make me feel better in myself, so I do them.

It’s more than that though. And one of the best ways to start if you don’t believe you are worthy of your own love is to fake it. Do it as if you’re already confident in yourself, fake it to yourself until you believe it. And you will. If you keep talking nicely to yourself, telling yourself you can do whatever it is you’re trying to do, you will come to believe it.

I promise.

But when it comes to confidence in how you (think you) look?

There’s a reason why I refuse to focus on the scales, or even the number on your clothes, and it is this – that number does not define you. It does not say what kind of person you are, how fit or healthy you are, nor does it say if you are awesome or not. If you’re a good person/parent. It’s just a metric for one thing – what all of your bones, muscles, organs, fluids etc all combined weigh. My weight hasn’t changed below a couple of kilos in about 2 years, yet I’m the fittest I’ve been since before kids, and much stronger. My measurements have changed a little, but again, not hugely. I know I’ve put on muscle, and I know I’m doing the right things for my HEALTH (mental and physical)

So what does that say about me? Does the number on the scales negate all of the work I’m putting into making myself healthier, stronger, fitter, and happier in myself? Am I a lesser person because of the number on the scales?

No!

I KNOW how much work I am putting into moving more, eating better and being kinder to myself, and a number doesn’t change that. Sure, it can be disheartening to see that number never move, but I’ve gotten to a point now where I understand that isn’t the be all of my life – I finally understand that while there are more changes I can make, the ones I already have made have made a real difference in my energy levels, my health, and I just feel… calmer. More sane.

It’s a good thing I don’t aim for the perfect, pretty selfies when I’m exercising! This photo STILL doesn’t show the amount of sweat I was covered in!

I know ladies who won’t even look at themselves in the mirror, it makes them too sad. That makes me sad. You are beautiful, no matter who you are, or what size you are. Size doesn’t change what kind of a person you are, no matter how much you believe it. Look at yourself in the mirror, focus on the good, over time, you will find more and more good things to appreciate, I promise.

If your weight is affecting your day to day life – your energy, causes you pain because you are heavier than you should be, if you have high blood pressure, Type 2 Diabetes, if you have heart conditions – anything that is directly related to your size – then YES – losing FAT (note that I didn’t say weight) in a steady, responsible way, may likely help these conditions. But losing weight only because you are unhappy with the numbers it relates to – that is not healthy. But again I go back to what I already said – being a number on a scale doesn’t mean you are unhealthy, and you should be loving yourself regardless of size.

Just so long as regardless of that number, you are taking the best care of yourself that you can – that is all that is important.

The curse of the “Body Transformation” programmes

There are so many “transformation” programmes out there. So many that spout weight loss, bikini bodies, change your life by losing weight, transform your life by transforming your body. I will never jump on that bandwagon to sell again. Why? Because it’s kinda bullshit. “Jump on my programme for 12 weeks, go hard, lose heaps of weight, deprive yourself, then at the end of 12 weeks, go back to normal living, gain it all back, hate yourself for it, feel bad and come back and do it all over again.”

No.

While some people doing these challenges DO keep their weight off long term, and for sure, not ALL “transformation” programmes are bogus (I have seen some that are fantastic), for the most part, it’s an industry set on your failing so you go back and do it again. Most will teach the client nothing about loving what they already have, about being a happier person regardless of the scales. The best diet and lifestyle changes you can make are the ones you can do for life. Not just for 12 weeks. I welcome ladies to do my programme again if they want to, but it will still focus on the same thing – lifelong habitual changes. The idea is that you gain the skills to treat yourself better, be happier, healthier and fitter.

So while, yes, I run Online programmes, I run them as something people can do for life, small changes they can add to and overhaul their whole life. If you would like to know more about this programme (the next online round starts late June 2019!) – head to this link.Just know that while we can track your weight and measurement changes, and we will celebrate any wins, the focus will be on the steps and habits it takes to get you there, not the loss itself.

I also now offer 1-1 online coaching, for an even more intensive look at habitual changes that lead to a healthier, more active life.

That’s all for this week, I think I’ve spouted on MORE than enough!! I hope that this has been helpful and that something in there resonated with you. Please feel free to flick me an email if you want to chat, you can use the Contact Me tab to do this.

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