I've been In NYC for a week now, and since I've been here I've found myself saying things and asking questions that normally don't come out of my mouth. Things like;
- Do these pants look to small on me?
- I'm just really bloated that's why my stomach looks this way
- Am I fat?
- I'm not fat, right?
Needless to say, I'm having a moment of not feeling okay in my body--and that's okay.
I should know how to make the negative feelings stop, right? Yes and no, I'm no less likely to experience negative thoughts about my body because I'm a strength coach and teach women how to love their bodies. I am human--like a real one, with feelings and emotions. We all feel these things, and someone is straight up lying to you if they act like they magically love their body every day.
I've walked around NYC, which is blowing my mind with it's magic, and I've been more concerned with how my shirt looks laying on my body than what I'm doing. I've let my inner voice consume me a bit and in a moment yesterday on the train as we passed by the Statue Of Liberty, I thought to myself, "What the fuck, dude? You're here, and your body isn't going to change in the next 5 min or next 7 days while you're here." I could choose to let the thoughts ruin me and this trip, OR I could stop fighting with the resistance of hate and negative feelings and soften to what I'm feeling. I could realize, okay hey, these thoughts are not serving you, and it's time to take action to step back into your power.
Self Love Isn't The Prize
Have you ever told yourself that if you lose those last _____lbs that you'll love your body. That you'll finally be happy, confident, empowered etc. when you get to this very specific point?
I use to think this way too, that when I had abs, I would automatically love my body. My inner voice would allow me to believe that my worthiness, of my own love, stemmed from what I looked like.
Self Love Is Like A Wave
I tell my clients that self love is like a wave that you have to ride. Some days you'll be riding it smoothly. You'll wake up and you'll feel good in your body. Other days, you may wake up and not be feeling it--both of these are okay.
The magic in loving yourself lies in the fact that self love isn't a prize you're after, but it's having the tools to use during those not so hot day's--being able to use what you know and what you have to step back into the flow of love.
But, I Still Feel Not Okay In My Body....
Okay listen, I know how you feel because I've been there and was currently there the last 5 days.
It's really easy to stay in the story of hate we've created in our minds. I think it's because it's hard to believe that we have allowed ourselves to get here, which makes it even scarier to believe that, YES GIRL, you do have the power to change the conversation out of hate and into love.
What I do with my clients, and what I do with myself as well because home girl over here practices what I preach---is dive into your tool box.
Your took box is your resource treasure box of ways to step back into the flow of your power and self love.
Through my six week customized coaching program, I teach each woman who works with me how to create and use her tool box so when she finds herself in one of those days, she doesn't have to let it consume her--she can take action.
Here's What My Toolbox Looks Like:
- Use a mantra I need most. Right now it's: I am love.
- Move my body. Working out in some form is a must. It allows me to feel connected and powerful, unlike how I feel when I'm struggling with body image.
- Dance it out. I firmly believe (and I say this almost everyday now) that when you move a muscle you change a mindset. That's why dancing and movement are such bad ass and quick ways to change the conversation in your mind. Allowing the emotions to pass through you as they need!
- Journal. I've really learned how much I love journaling in the past year, it allows me to get all of the swarming thoughts in my brain out so I can think more clearly. I loved it so much that I created a six week journaling handbook for all SCR clients that provides them with 42 different prompts and journalizing activities to help them navigate the journey of connecting to their power, into love, confidence, happiness etc. Here's one of the journaling prompts from the book: WHAT WOULD YOUR TEENAGE SELF LOVE ABOUT YOU NOW?
My toolbox is a bit more extensive than this, but these are a few I come to when I have the lower self love days. Your toolbox should be filled with the things that help you feel powerful, connected to your body, happy, and in the flow of love. Come back to this list whenever you're struggling.
Most importantly, know that we have to ride the waves of this journey without resistance and without thinking you've "failed" just because you have one shitty day.
You are allowed to have shitty days. You can have days where you feel less than great about your body--knowing that at any moment you can take the power back, knowing that these feelings are only temporary and you can change the story.
Create your tool box so that you can handle the days where you feel off in your body, showing compassion to those feelings when they arise, knowing they are in no way a sign of failure.