When My Self Love Prescription Became The Only Option
Pretty ballsy right? To pop up on the internet sans clothes. But these photos? I freaking love 'em. And you know why? Because I look darn happy. And I know I’m healthy to boot - physically, mentally and spiritually. Despite the saggy boobies, scars, cellulite and stretch marks. I love it all.
But it’s become normal, right? To hate on yourself. It’s almost expected - for fear of being declared arrogant or a bitch.
To hate what you see in the mirror. To binge drink and eat on weekends, only to declare the diet starts Monday. To judge yourself for not being smart enough/skinny enough/pretty enough/funny enough/savvy enough. To coast through life ticking the boxes and following the should society without batting an eyelid.
I should know. I was stock standard society approved. Good job, handsome fiance, nice apartment, annual overseas trips.
And yet there I was punishing myself on the reg. For not being this, for not being that.
At one stage, I was eating an average of 1000 calories a day, working out for 1.5 hours like mad at the gym 6 times a week, working in a job I hated and then bingeing on the weekends with burgers, donuts, booze, whatever I could get my hands on - and punishing myself again come Monday.
I made it to my ‘goal’ weight and was flooded with compliments on how ‘great’ I looked. But it wasn’t enough. I still felt miserable and believed that the only thing would solve that would be to lose MORE weight (ha!) and restrict, restrict, restrict.
Worse still? The conversations I would have with girlfriends. The mutual self-hate over a glass of wine on a Friday night that would barely skim the surface of what we were really telling ourselves.
We were all in the same boat, but none of us knew there was any other option.
I didn’t even know what the concept of Self Love was.
But one Sunday morning in April 2016 I woke up to a phone call. My Dad had died suddenly.
I’ll spare you the year that was, because the truth is, I don’t really remember much of it at all.
After a year in the depths of grief, I surfaced for air. And I realised - the trivial worries, concerns and stresses I had before, the punishment, the restrictions, it was wasted energy.
I knew very little about the why’s of my dad's death - but it was then, that I knew that my own self-relationship had to change.
I didn’t want to get to a place of such pain - ever. And I loved life! As much as I punished and tortured myself, I had big dreams, big goals and big shoes to fill. My Dad left behind quite an incredible legacy.
In the scheme of life or death - what really matters?
A bit of cellulite? Nope.
An extra roll from living and eating La Dolce Vita with your lover in Italy for a month? Nope.
A guy you went on 3 dates with not returning your call? Nope.
Your boss yelling at you? Nope.
A few zits? Nope.
Doing what society expects of you? Nope.
Loving your body for the beautiful vessel it is? Yep.
Treating yourself with kindness, tenderness and compassion no matter what? Yep.
Chasing and fulfilling your purpose on this freaking amazing planet? Yep.
Soaking up all of life and it’s magic? Yep and yep.
The thing is, life is precious - and it’s fleeting. We can either spend it worrying about what we look like (beautiful, regardless), what others think of us (none of our business) and stressing if we don’t achieve X, Y and Z OR we can cultivate a loving relationship with ourselves, with others and with this planet - as best we can.
Happiness and self love is an inside job. It won’t come from a partner, a job, a bag, a certain weight. It starts on the inside and it can start now. Not when you do this, or become that, or live there, or do that.
We can love ourselves in this lifetime, from this very moment- and gift our mind, body, spirit, dreams and passions with the energy and time they deserve.
OR we can go on hating ourselves. For what? To please others? To torture ourselves? For what purpose and to what end?
I know it’s easier said than done - and I’m for practicality as much as I am for spirituality. So let’s talk A Prescription For Self-Love. I’m all for Self Love as medicine and a cure-all these days.
A Self Love Prescription For Every One And Every Body
Be Tender: You can have the body you want, but it doesn't come from punishing it, it comes from treating it with love and tenderness.
Listen: Listening, surrendering and tuning into your body's wisdom and intuition is THE best way to create the life (and bod!) you want.
Release: Stop trying to constantly control. Release the reins and soften the self-control. With that comes joy, moments you’d never expect and shitload more FUN!
Trust: Start trusting that your body + spirit asks for what it needs. Tune in, slow down and listen.
Uncover: Take the time to work out what you want and need. Without judgement, expectation or the need to people please (I see you!) Figure out your core values and live by them.
Realise: You are perfect, whole and complete. The only thing that needs to change is how you treat yourself. Don’t let society win in telling you who or what you are or need to be. You get to decide.
Nourish: Food heals. Food nourishes. Food restores. Shed the diet mentality and start nourishing yourself. Focus on your inner self and your outer self will glow too.
Move: Your bod loves to move. Give it a challenge. Work out for your mind as much as you do for a healthy body. Say no to the crazy daily cardio. Say yes to mindful movement. Sweat, don’t slog.
Breathe: Without it, we’re dead. Stop, pause. Inhale. Exhale.
Be Here Now: Simple. The past is gone and the future might not even come. Be here now.
Align: With what you truly want and desire. And go after it.
Believe: You are worthy and deserving of love. But love starts with YOU first.
When I began treating myself with Self Love. My world changed. Not overnight, I won’t lie. It took time, but I began to I feel happier, sexier, I had more guts, more gusto, I gave myself permission to pursue my dreams, I laughed more, smiled more, I began to actually like my flaws, my rolls, my dimples, my creases.
When a troll came after me recently, I shrugged it off. A few years ago, their nasty comments would have eaten at me for days. I became more resilient, more knowing of my own beauty, my own worthiness, that I am deserving to be exactly as I am and who I am.
And after a long 29 years, I finally saw myself as beautiful, whole, complete. Just as I was. Just as I am.
I’m still a work in progress. Each and every day I work towards becoming the best me and loving the crap outta myself. I treat my mind, body and spirit with the love and respect they deserve and that I am worthy of.
No matter my size, no matter my salary, no matter my job title, no matter what others say or think, no matter WHAT.
Yeah, I still have days where I think I could be skinnier, prettier, smarter, more popular. But they’re becoming increasingly few and far between.
And trust me, you can feel it too.
Healthy, happy, beautiful.
No matter what.
So join me and become a Self Lover, because gosh darn it feels fucking fantastic.