We all want to feel good. Especially when it comes to our bodies.
We’re told by the media, by our physical trainers, by our diet evangelist friends at work, etc. that losing weight = a healthier body, and feeling better in said body. The lighter we are, the better we’ll feel. Losing weight is the way to feel good. Right?
Then why are there so many uber-thin women who are going to crazy extremes through diet, exercise, plastic surgery, and every pill, potion, and shake mix under the sun to get a “perfect” body (when they already have a body most would consider perfect, by traditional standards)?
Because losing weight isn’t the magic bullet to feeling good physically. Or emotionally, for that matter. Our relationship with our bodies is inextricably linked with how we’re feeling emotionally as well as physically.
Sometimes the things we do to ourselves physically can cause negative feelings, and sometimes even mental health issues, to bubble up.
I want to share an Instagram message I received via the @healthyatanysizedaily community account. @mynewdressupshoes said:
“This photo was taken a year ago exactly, when I had progressed to thirty kilos on my squat. I remember being really proud of myself and how much strength I was building, which was super cool but there were other things going on that weren't cool at all. So many people thought that because I was fit I was healthy but that was not the truth. My mental illness was crippling, I obsessed over every single thing that I ate, constantly counting kjs, constantly weighing myself, I even had panic attacks. This is a loving reminder that good health starts with your thoughts and mental health.”
We couldn’t agree more, @mynewdressupshoes.
What we do to our bodies can create negative feelings and mental-health-related consequences. Sometimes, we tend to also use physical feelings to block whatever negative emotional feelings we’re experiencing.
In my own life, I’ve been guilty of using extreme exercise to manage stress and negative feelings. I’ve also tried to numb my negative feelings with unhealthy eating, on both the extreme deprivation and binge-eating ends of the spectrum.
So look, we all want to feel good. But sometimes, in our effort to feel good physically, we create negative emotional consequences. Other times, we need to peel back whatever physical outlets we might be using to block negative feelings (such as extreme eating and exercise-related habits) and let those negative feelings come to forefront.
Whatever version of this you may or may not be experiencing in your own life, we in the #healthyatanysize community want to hear from you. If you’re struggling with any of these issues, we are here to inspire and empower you. And if you’ve got it all figured out and feel like you’ve conquered these issues (or managed to avoid dealing with them in the first place), we want to be inspired and empowered by you.
Tune in to my Facebook Live broadcast on Friday, October 14, 2016 to join the conversation. And sign up for the #healthyatanysize community to receive updates and weekly content like this.