Monday, May 21, 2012

day 16: body image and self talk

Last week, Sal wrote this amazing post on finding a postive self-mantra.  I couldn't believe how personally moved I felt by her words.  I'm always the first to preach positive self-talk and positive body image, but lately, I've been the last to practice what I preach.

My recent struggles have left me with a lot of anger towards my body.  I go to great lengths to take care of my body, and the fact that it's not returning the favor has left me pretty pissed off to say the least.  While I never intend to say mean things to myself, the anger seems to have hijacked that inner kind voice, leaving the most critical words in its place.

When I read Sal's post, I initially thought, "Right on!  I love a positive self-mantra!"  Then, I went shopping.  As I was in the dressing room trying on pants, I looked in the mirror and the first thought to cross my mind was, "Ugh, I'm so white, lumpy and see-through ... so gross."  Suddenly, I was shocked.  How could that be the first thought in my mind?  When did I become so critical and unappreciative of this body?  And what do I need to do to change my attitude?

It seemed a positive self-mantra was in order.  This past week, I've made the effort to do just as Sal suggested.  Find a mantra and say it out loud.  My mantra?  You are strong.

I can't say this small gesture has completely cured the problem, but it's made me so much more aware of replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.  I know that a mind filled with positive energy is far more productive than one filled with negative energy.

Last night while getting ready for bed, I made it a point to look in the mirror and thank my body for such an amazing experience.  But even after all that, this morning I sat at my computer and scrutinized the photos of me running, zooming in on all the lumps and bumps I hated to see.  As I lamented my thighs, it hit me.  What are you doing?  Are you kidding?!  This body carried you across 13.1 miles of terrain for over 2 hours!  Do you know how lucky you are?! 

Reality check received.  I seized those thoughts and immediately changed my focus to the photos that were more flattering ... and then did what any proud lady would do: I posted them on Facebook.

Do you have a positive self-mantra?  What is it?
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