I stepped off the scale.
2 pounds?!? 2 measly pounds? MOTHER F.
I felt a wave of frustration and discouragement pass over me. “Why is this so difficult??!?!”
It only lasted a split second, and then I caught myself.
"HA!!!" This is exactly what I help my clients move through and here I was doing the same damn thing - setting crazy high expectations, using them as the measure of my success (or failure), and letting that freak me out and get me down.
How on earth did I find myself back here?
Well, put simply, the past 3 months, I let the craziness of life get in the way. I stopped working out, ate way less home cooked food, had a drink or two nearly every single day. I started to feel like crap and no surprise, put on some weight.
By the time I started to get settled in my new place in LA (yup, if you haven’t heard, my husband and I just moved from Denver!), I was FULLY craving a return to my healthy routine. And I was also feeling down on my body, bloated, and uncomfortable in my clothes.
I felt torn. Because like my clients, I want to feel healthy and strong and good in my body; but I also teach and strive to live the idea that it DOES NOT FREAKING MATTER what we weigh. We don’t have to be perfect or look like a super model to be good enough, to be safe, to be loved. Seriously. F that.
But, I am deeply committed to caring for my body gently and lovingly and to doing the things that make me feel well, so I put all of the drama thoughts aside and just went about my baby steps: meal planning, drinking less, getting on my mat even if its just for 20 minutes before I’m feeling exhausted. I started to feel better, in my head and in my body… yay, right?
And then came the moment with the scale.
I’d only been back on the self-care train for about 10 days. Objectively, 2 lbs lost in 10 days on the road to a balanced healthy body weight is actually pretty awesome.
So what was with the mini freak out?
Honestly, it felt like a reflex; like my lower leg swinging involuntarily forward when my pediatrician would knock my knee in just the right place.
Those reflexes still pop up now and again, despite all of the healing I’ve been through. They no longer run the show, but at one point they definitely did.
In the past, a moment like that would have either triggered me to get discouraged and give up, or more likely, to start some intense restrictive cleanse diet that would last a few weeks before I would ultimately… get discouraged and give up.
That’s messed up!
I could see so clearly that this is the moment that causes many of us to get stuck in a struggle with food and body weight. This and about a million moments just like this.
--> Moments where we tie our worth to an external measure and our success or failure to an impossible-to-meet expectation.
--> Moments that cause us to feel discouraged and hopeless. Moments that trigger self-destructive reactions.
But here’s the truth… we don’t have to let these moments hold us hostage. We don’t have to stay stuck in an endless cycle of restrict and binge.
We may not be able to stop those reflexes, at least not right away. But we can change how we respond to them. It’s what I work with women to discover for themselves everyday, and it’s life changing stuff.
I know that regardless of what happens with the scale or how my pants fit, I will continue to gently care for my body and do the things that make me feel well. I will continue to feel better. And eventually my body will get back to its happy weight. No drama, no stress, despite my brain’s old freak out reflex.
If you experience discouraging moments like these, you are not alone! I’d love for you to share your experience with me and to explore how we might work together to finally, truly shift this for you.