Do you, like me, have shifting relationships with your unwanted extra pounds that are based not at all on what your actual weight or body shape is, but on how your mind has decided to perceive them? For instance, I have noticed that when I am at the beginning of some healthy-eating kick I suddenly start treating my body with a lot more kindness, because I’m newly convinced the rolls and dimples are, like, temporary. It’s like if you’ve ever been stuck talking to someone whose company is unpleasant but once escape is imminent you get a burst of generosity because the keys are jingling and what the hell, why not go in for the goodbye hug.

There’s something similar that happens when I’m in one of those Everything Changes Tomorrow modes (aka Diet Starts on Monday). I haven’t even altered my eating yet — in fact, I’ve probably gone overboard with all the soon-to-be-forbidden foods, because that is a ridiculous thing I tend to do over and over again — but I feel calm and settled about the way I look. Because I have a plan. There are gears that will soon be in motion, so that gives me hope that I will no longer be stuck. The emotional charge drains away, my body becomes mostly neutral rather than roiling with character assassinations.

Kindness, calmness, peace. What a relief is is to feel that way. It would be awfully great if I could find my way to those feelings without subjecting myself to the punishing cycle of restrictions and obsessions, sabotage and failure.

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LP
LP
5 years ago

Gawd I love your eloquent honesty. You articulate how I feel nearly 100% of the time. Thanks for giving me a voice, and for letting me know I’m not alone.

I know you hear this all the time, but I live for your posts. Thanks for keepin it real.

Kim
Kim
5 years ago

HOLY SHIT. Not only is that EXACTLY like I am with my body, but you just explained the phenomena of why I’m so much nicer to my coworkers at 4:45 pm than I am at 8:30 in the morning.

Rach
Rach
5 years ago

It’s so interesting, isn’t it, how poorly we treat ourselves when we’re in our very worst places. I always think about what I would say to a friend who was ranting to me about hating her body – I would certainly wouldn’t agree that she was fat and stupid (which is the mantra I always point at myself). And then it’s the downward spiral of punishing myself for the fatness and stupidity that leads to shoveling more shit down my gullet… which then only proves how stupid I truly am. Why can’t we treat ourselves with the same consistent kindness we show others?

LP
LP
5 years ago

@Rach – just a quick note – you’re not “stupid.” Sounds to me like you’re a compassionate person and friend who is in the process of using compassion with herself.

Not to get all counselory-talk with you. It’s just that the word “stupid” jumped out at me as being so harsh.

<3

honeybecke
honeybecke
5 years ago

That is HOPE.
What a treasure hope can be.
What I need to work on re: weight and hope is the dread I feel tugging at me that these attempts to change and control my eating will fail, just like it has every other time…and how will I ever find the strength, courage, and yes, HOPE, to ever try again?
Anyhow, I totally feel ya. <3

Mary
Mary
5 years ago

Yes, yes, yes. I’m so much more at peace with my belly squish the day I start (or the day before) a workout routine. Somehow there’s a lightness to my step and my roll looks smaller already even though it’s the exact. same. belly.

Shawna
Shawna
5 years ago

I’ve noticed that I feel like I look better after a sweaty workout than any other time (well, except maybe in the morning when I first get up). As if an hour of effort has magically transformed me.

I also find that I tend to eat better after a yoga session than any other workout, as if I’m already on a roll towards health so I might as well keep going.

Knowing this, I’ve been toying with the idea of getting up earlier and doing yoga to start the day. However, this impulse is counteracted by how much I love to sleep. My whole life I’ve showered in the evening so I don’t have to get up early enough to shower in the morning…

Helen
Helen
5 years ago

Yes, that would be awfully great.

Bridget
5 years ago

I do that too. I always say that I’m working out to feel better about myself more than to really look better, because whether I’ve actually lost weight or not, I believe that I have and am happier.

Grace
5 years ago

Oh, I love you! Yes, HA!, and yesssss.

Em
Em
5 years ago

I do the same thing. I was feeling good yesterday, because I was starting my new healthy eating plan today. Then I got some mail that upset me and guess what? I just inhaled half a box of leftover Christmas chocolates. Yep. The cycle is vicious.

JJ
JJ
4 years ago

Oh this…this this this. Like someone else said, you articulate so perfectly what I’m thinking / feeling. My husband asked me yesterday why I keep eating and drinking too much when I’m clearly so unhappy with my body at this point (up 20# and counting) and I couldn’t even explain to him how sick and twisted it all is in my head. Addiction and mindlessness, all wrapped up in one.