Earlier this week, after purposely avoiding it for over a month, I hopped on a scale. (This is why.) When I looked down at the number, I quickly did the math in my head.
51 pounds. I have lost 51 pounds since September.
I should have been ecstatic. But instead, I was ashamed.
Ashamed that I even had 51 pounds to lose. Ashamed that I have 100 more to go. Ashamed of what kind of person that makes me. Ashamed that nobody would ever love me because of my size. Ashamed that I have to hide from people. Ashamed of my struggles. Ashamed of who I am.
So, as much as I wanted to share my little victory, I couldn’t. I couldn’t say, “Oh my gosh, I am so excited right now! I have officially hit the 50-pound mark! I’m taking control of my own life!” Because I was ashamed to admit that I was not in control before this.
For the last few days, I have been digging down to figure out WHY I feel this way. There will be more on that later… But there are a few things I feel compelled to say to you today. (Forgive me if they seem a bit disconnected…this was never meant to be a blog post. It was supposed to be a quick Facebook post, but it quickly turned into this, whatever this is…)
I know I am not the only one who has ever felt ashamed of my body. In fact, numerous surveys have found that AT LEAST 80% of women feel ashamed of their bodies. Think about that…that’s 4 out of 5 women! Your friends, your mom, your sisters, your daughters, your coworkers, your clients, the cashier at the grocery store, your waitress…YOU.
To YOU, the beautiful, amazing, talented, unique, strong, confident, loving, intelligent, graceful, funny, generous, lovely, compassionate, gorgeous woman: do not feel ashamed of your body. Do not criticize or condemn yourself. Give yourself some grace! Do not allow the number on the scale or what you see in the mirror to determine how you feel about yourself. Don’t you DARE be ashamed of who you are. Because you are so much more.
I have a challenge for you today. This is something I will be doing, and I highly encourage you to join me. I’ve started on a couple of these items, and I must say, it is not easy…at all. But it is so worth it.
1. Appreciate what your body can do!
You can walk and talk and see and speak and hear. Your body has amazing abilities! It can heal itself. It can feel things. It can accomplish incredible things.
Write down all of the amazing things your body allows you to do!
2. Write 10 things you love about yourself!
For some, this may be difficult at first. But it gets easier! Find things you love about yourself, and focus on those things. What you focus on, you will get more of.
4. Be nice to your body.
Do something good for your body each day. That may mean exercising, or giving your body a rest. It could mean choosing a salad over a burger, or allowing yourself to enjoy a treat without guilt. One thing it means for everyone, no matter who you are, is choosing to love your body instead of being ashamed of it.
5. Celebrate your victories! Share them with the world!
Learning to love yourself doesn’t happen overnight. But we can make the choice to stop being ashamed of our bodies. We can be grateful for the wonderful things our bodies can do. We can celebrate our victories. We can love who we are, while we are learning how to be who we were created to be.
So today, I am no longer ashamed to say I have lost 51 pounds. I am not afraid to celebrate my little victories, OR my big ones.
I’d like to invite you to share your victories, too. Leave a comment below, and let’s celebrate together! Or better yet, share this link on Facebook, and share your victories there! Be sure to invite your friends to share their victories, as well! I can’t wait to read your posts.