To develop a healthy relationship with your body, it’s essential to recognise how and when you criticise yourself. I’d like you to become aware of the thoughts you have throughout the day.
This three-step exercise will help you along:
- Write down negative thoughts: These might be in relation to your body, your food or your reflection in the mirror. Write down whatever it is that you think about your body.
- Replace negative thoughts with positive ones: If you’ve written something like, “I dislike my stomach” try writing something positive such as, “I thank my stomach for working hard to digest my food.” Continue this process until you’ve written a positive thought for each negative one you listed in step one.
- Keep your list handy: You might like to stick this list on your fridge, your bathroom mirror or keep it folded in your bag. When you catch yourself thinking a negative thought, pull out your list and read through it. You’ll find that in time, you’ll begin to perceive and appreciate your body in a more positive way.
Deciding to love your body is going to help you live your life to the fullest. However, for many this doesn’t happen with a simple click of the fingers. Here are a few extra points to keep in mind (plus some practical actions too!):
Accept that it takes time
Healing your broken relationship with food and your body is a journey that doesn’t happen overnight. Negative thoughts may pop up throughout life, but when they do, you’ll have the tools to manage them. Trust that they will pass.
Shift your mentality from weight loss to health
Let’s focus on being healthy: that means feeling energetic, feeling strong or walking with a spring in your step.It means sleeping well and feeling comfortable in our clothes, rather than caring what the number on the scale says. Loving your body or even simply learning to appreciate itis what matters the most.
Don’t believe everything you see online
All these people that seem like they’re always travelling, shopping, in bikinis at the beach and eating out? You are constantly seeing their highlight reel, rather than reality. Don’t compare. Focus on your life and achieving your own goals.
Move in a way that you love and look forward to. Exercising shouldn’t be a chore or something you overdo because you’re unhappy with your body. It’s not about forcing yourself to do something you don’t enjoy. You may like to get outside, stretch, walk, run or skip!
Perform an act of kindness today
By lifting up someone else, it immediately makes you feel good. This could be as simple as complimenting a stranger, texting a friend and telling them how much you appreciate them or baking something yummy for your family.