Let's Talk: Body Image.
Struggling with body image.
Body Image - "Body image is the perception that a person has of their physical self and the thoughts and feelings that result from that perception." - NEDC
Coming home from a hard workout feeling quite proud about the work I've put in, face hot and body sweaty, I plonk myself on the bed and lay there for a while. After minutes of trying not to, I get up to check my body for any improvements. None. I knew it. Yet again. Lying back down, I begin to think about my body and my fitness journey, "Is it me or is it the mirror? The Lighting? Am I not going hard enough?
WHAT IS IT?
For a while now I've been hitting the gym trying to get fit, strong and lose weight. Yes, I've made improvements, I can run longer, lift heavier and you know what, life is that little bit better because of the gym. But why am I not happy? No matter how much weight/fat I lose or muscle I gain, I can never seem to be happy with what I see neck down in the mirror. I feel like my mind plays tricks on me, making me see things that aren't actually there.
Why do you feel like this?
It all started when I was younger and chubby. I say chubby because looking back I don't even think I was that bad. I felt like was constantly being called "fat", people were always watching my plate making comments about how "2 pieces of chicken is too much!" (people still do this lol) and never fitting into clothes that were supposed to be for my age. I was even taken to a dietitian at one point, this is when I felt the worst tbh. For a long time I was angry and embarrassed about it; now I feel like it was done out of love and concern so have moved on from that. But, those comments and feelings have stuck with me throughout my teens and even still now i'm struggling to get them out of my head and just to get over it. It's made me become obsessive of my weight and being "skinny", because I fear going back to how I was.
I put myself under immense pressure to look like the people I see on social media or in the magazines. I know in my head it's bad to be comparing myself to others and unrealistic to be aiming for things like a bigger bum, FF cup breasts, wider hips and a thigh gap when it's not even in my genes.
Why is my own body never good enough?
What have you done about it?
What haven't I done?! I think I've tried every diet that exists to the point I've just given up and not eaten anything at all. I've tried every exercise instagram has told me to do. I've had personal trainer after personal trainer hoping at least one of them will give me my dream bod! I've even searched the prices of the liposuction and BBL surgeries i'm going to do. Dr Miami is fully booked til 2038 but Turkey looks like a shout.
But on a serious note, I can't blame anyone else for the way I feel about myself. It's all on ME.
Writing this has really helped me nail down the root causes of why I struggle with my body image. I can now work on solutions and start reversing the "damage" the past, along with my own thoughts, has created. I can begin to appreciate my reflection.
A few things I've done to help:
- Saying 5 things I do like about my body and just gassing them up! I'm so used to saying negative things like "why's my *FUPA so big OHMAHGERD!", and wonder why that's all I can see. If you think or say something long enough, you'll start to believe it.
- I have changed the way I look at the gym and the reason I go. Instead of going because I neeeeeeds to get a fat ass like Linda's on Insta; I'm going because I want to beat my personal best from my last session by two more reps. Yes, I want to get into shape and have a banging body, but I cannot come and kill myself and confidence over it. Pls.
- Working with what my mamma gave me. Looking at the body shape I have and coming to terms that there are things I'm not going to get through gym. And that's okay babygirl.
- More patience. I have definitely come a long way (something else I also need to appreciate more), but it didn't happen overnight. I always want quick results, which is why I'm constantly disheartened when I don't have abs straight after a workout. I've started trusting the process and now have more patience with the journey.
- Ignoring comments about weight gain/loss from other people. Mind your business innit.
Saying all this, I am so grateful to God that I'm alive and healthy.
"Your body loves you. Love it back."
The Bamb x
*FUPA- Fat Upper P*ssy Area