Really? IS it true? Is it possible? Will it work? Is my happiness only 10 pounds away? Don’t we all really wish it were that easy.. oh but it is - quite easier actually.... Happiness... it’s a choice, and it isn’t contingent on 10 pounds, despite popular belief. I’ve rarely met a woman though, who isn’t always convincing herself, “that if she could only loose that last ten pounds” she would be happy with herself. You know what I am talking about ladies? You ever had those 10 pounds to loose? What happened when you finally lost them? Were you happier? My guess ... is no... better yet... my guess is you found 10 MORE pounds to loose! But let’s be honest with ourselves here.... what kind of way is that to live... Truth is - those “last” ten pounds... won’t do it for you... they simply won’t. You need to choose to be happy with yourself exactly as you are - I am not saying don’t strive to be better, don’t strive to change, or don’t keep making choices to keep you healthier - but PLEASE. DON’T. base your happiness off the scale, especially the magic number 10.
I will never forget a conversation I had with this lovely lady about 1.5 years ago now - it changed my life my relationship with my body! We were talking about how beautiful her daughter was. I actually complimented her regarding daughter and she said, “I try to get her to see it but she is always so busy thinking she is too big and needs to loose more weight.” Then she went on to tell me how if she knew 30 years ago what she knew now how different her life would look. She explained to me how she tries to get her daughters to realize their beauty now and embrace it, as they are. She continues to explain how when she looks back on her own pictures she realizes that she had it all wrong. She looks at those pictures and sees this beautiful young woman, but remembers how she spent the last 30 years not enjoying it for even one minute. It was always about loosing the last (or next) 10 pounds. She tells me how she spent all her life focused on what was not good enough, and the scale, and these 10 pounds she just had to loose, and before she knew it life passed her by, and she never really even appreciated what she had while she had it. So then she reminded me to ‘own’ it while I had it, enjoy it, appreciate it, and know it.
This story really got my head spinning in so many ways. It helped me realize who I was, my relationship with my body, what defined my happiness, what defined my beauty, and how insanely distorted all my thinking was. It was time to make a huge mental shift! Realizing that I was in control of my mind, my thoughts and my self talk was huge. I took some time to reflect on my life up to that point and realized I was no different than this woman. Looking back I realized that I had spent the majority of my life always trying to loose 10 pounds. I rationalized that I would be happy with myself once I lost these 10 pounds, as if 10 were some magical number. The thing is, even when I lost the 10 pounds, I miraculously always found 10 more I needed to loose. This meant, that I was defining happiness by a number that was truly never obtainable, because there would always be an ‘extra’ 10. I also realized that I defined my happiness on a number that really only has a relationship with gravity. I was working out hard, eating well, and more then likely gaining muscle, which would add to the scale weight, but in my tricky mind, it was never enough - not so long as I continued to give that invaluable number power over me. So I made a goal to shift my focus.
I knew that I needed to start realizing that my happiness, my worth, and my beauty was not defined by a number. I also started to realize that number was constantly changing - both up and down, and if my focus was shifted to other factors such as how I feel, how my pants fit, how I look in the mirror, I would be in a much healthier place. For the next year and a half I still did weigh myself. I definitely practiced not letting the number be in charge or defining, but I still felt like it was important to know where I was at to “keep it under control”. I did however, shift my focus, and my goals. I set my focus in alignment with trying to be healthy. If I committed to regular exercise, and nourishing my body with healthy foods, then I needed to know that was beautiful in and of itself. I needed to find peace, joy and happiness in my commitment to living a healthy lifestyle, and living by example for other women. I realized that I wasn’t alone in this constant strive for 10 more pounds, and I wanted to empower other women to release their innate obsession over this ‘magic’ number 10, and to stop determining their level of self worth based on a number.
It wasn’t, however, until about 6 months ago when I started realizing just how incredibly warped our minds are as women, and how detrimental to our health and well being this obsession with our body weight really was. My partner and I started hosting a nutritional support group, where we asked everyone who participated to tuck their scales away for the duration of their commitment, solely focusing on health. I also, to support everyone, tucked mine away as well, and to this day I have not looked back, as it was the best decision ever. Until this point I had not realized just how much this number mattered to so many of us, and this was so deeply engrained. I’ve watched it aid in self sabotage on multiple levels.
One level of sabotage looks like this: People will be forced to be super connected to their bodies, and recognize how amazing they feel inside and out, will notice pants fitting more loosely, feel less puffy in the belly, and recognize their skin is better, their workouts are stronger, they have more energy... and so much more. In their heads they think that for this to all happen and be true they must be loosing so much weight. Then when they are finally allowed to get their scales back for a day, and they step on it, and realize the number didn’t go down as much as they expected, and suddenly they forget EVERYTHING amazing they have felt, only to be right back to sad or unhappy with themselves and the results. Sometimes in this situation, I have watched people just give up, thinking that what they were doing wasn’t working. What is up with this??? We have to learn to feel and trust ALL the other way more important indicators!
Ok, here is the flip side, and the other form of sabotage I often see looks like this: They person who feels really good, and is getting super committed to their health, finally is allowed to jump on scale, and realizes that he/she lost even more weight then anticipated and they are like “whoo hoo” .... “yay me” .... “I deserve a reward”.... and what does that often look like? A day off the gym, a shitty meal, which turns into several shitty meals, and a downward spiral only to find themselves right back where they started after all that hard work. See.. .this idea of a “reward” is merely our tricky brains steering us into sabotage. I think this scenario often plays out in people who don’t have a high level of self worth, because as they find themselves feeling successful, they quickly sabotage out of lack of self worth for this success. Either scenario is a loose loose. So how do we get to a win win?
I think we get there by throwing the scales away, and letting go of this strong emotional connection to the number on it. Ladies, I promise you that if you aren’t happy today - you will NOT be happy in 10 more pounds. Our relationship to gravity does not define our beauty, our worth, our health, or our happiness. YOU define these terms and choose them. We need to start redefining our relationships with our self, start to love and honor ourself enough to choose to engage in activity that is healthy and optimal for our bodies. Eat real and healthy food, get regular exercise, shift our focus to optimal health and trust that everything else follows. IF you eat well, sleep well, and exercise well, then you will inevitably loose the fat aka ‘real weight’ (**even if the scale might not agree**). We need to get more in tune with our body’s expression of health. Are you sleeping well? Are you sustaining energy through the day? Is your skin glowing? Are your moods stable? Do your pants fit? And so on..... And if the answers to these questions are still no... then we need to get more honest with ourselves about the choices we are actually making and make the necessary changes to get to that better place.
ust remember... there is NO such thing as 10 pounds to happiness! XO :)