I was having a case of the Mondays. After an over packed weekend my alarm blared at 6am. With a case of the sniffles and seven clients on my plate I power walked into the rain with a little less cheer than usual. After my first three clients and a coffee later, it was a quick dash to the ladies room where I surprisingly found all the inspiration I needed. The basement locker room of the UCSF fitness facility is by no means glamorous, but that morning it was ripe with empowerment. I found myself surrounded by bright pink post it’s. This was their message.
Love your body. Transfixed, I found myself meandering through the lockers, stalls and various full length mirrors reading these slips of pink put together by the National Eating Disorder Association. Each post-it offered a body love tip. A simple reminder to embrace your shape and empower you to take the best care of your body. Each tip was so powerful I’ve decided to discuss each one in a series on body image.
I think self esteem issues, especially in growing young girls, is going to be our biggest hurdle in the next few generations. Our exposure to unrealistic ideals in the media has and will continue to warp our self perception and expectations. Think this is just for the ladies, guys? Think again. Whether you’ve got short man syndrome or want to fit into the skinny jean hipster trend, guys are equally concerned about their image.
Start shifting your thoughts this moment with my first tip:
Be Gentle with Yourself: Eat when you are hungry, rest when you are tired, and surround yourself with people who remind you of you inner strength and beauty.
My two sense: We live in a world of extremes. A go-go society of work hard, play hard, eat more, consume more. And while passion is important, we have to learn to step back and listen to our bodies. Over stressing our adrenals ages us faster than cigarrettes and booze combined. A go-go gadget mentality at work soon spills into all aspects of life and soon we can’t distinguish whether we are hungry, tired, thirsty or all of the above. Slowing down and being gentle with ourselves is essential.
Stop whatever you are doing right now and just breath. Focus on the inhale and the exhale. Clear your thoughts by focusing on an object in your sight line for 30 seconds. Ahhh instant presence.
I love that this tip added the importance of surrounding yourself with positive people who support your strength. It’s sometimes hard to say goodbye to high school or childhood friends, but the people around us influence us subconsciously more than we’ll ever know. Especially when it comes to eating and drinking habits. Pick and chose friends who are going to inspire you to be more epic in all of your endeavors. Lifestyle wise and goal wise. Align yourself with those who are doing what you want to do or being who you want to be and let them rub off on you.
Take this simple reminder and post it somewhere you will see it often. Maybe on your full length mirror, the fridge, or hell..why not on the ceiling over your bed (though the night stand would work just fine.)
How are you going to be gentle with yourself today?