Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
I had a post all thought out. I had even created the picture. It was a before & after of my belly talking all about body positivity, but it just felt wrong to me.
It took me some time, but I came to the conclusion that it felt wrong because the image wasn't reflecting the message. Yes I was talking about positive body image but someone looking at the picture may just see a body & compare themselves which I absolutely don't want.
How often are we comparing ourselves to other women? It is ingrained in us from a very young age that if we look a certain way life gets better. That leads us to always be looking, always comparing ourselves to others on a quest to achieve this life. But does life really get better?
The plain truth of the matter is that there will always be someone who is 'better' than you. Who has a 'better' body, 'more success'. But we don't truly know what their life is like beyond what they show us in person or online.
If we continue to compare ourselves to others it will never end. In the comparison game there is always 'someone else'. We will never win.
This includes comparing us to us. So often I hear from moms that they want their pre baby body back. Everything is compared to this body, but that body doesn't exist anymore. To use this comparison as our goal sets us up for failure and doesn't allow us to start building a relationship with our new post baby body.
We need to look inward. Ask ourselves what we are looking for? Our bodies are just as amazing as another woman's, so why do we want to change them so badly?
Change needs to come from a place of love. We cannot hate ourselves into true lasting change. When we try to change because we don'l like who we are right now, if & when we finally reach those goals we still won't find happiness. Happiness needs to come first, then change will happen.
What do you love about yourself today, right now?
That may be a tough question to answer right now and that is ok. I always try to focus on my strengths which changes my perspective. For example instead of thinking my body is weak or broken after having a baby, I focus on how strong my body is for growing a human being and how grateful I am that it gave my me daughters. This shift helps me come from a place of love when I work to regain the strength and function in my body instead of from anger or frustration that my body is failing me.
Focusing on our strengths and changing our perspectives about our bodies is something that will take time, effort & maybe even some help. There is nothing wrong with seeking a professional to speak to about body image. I think the strongest people I know are the ones who have gotten help when they were unable to find a solution on their own.
Those that follow me on social media will now see that I will no longer be posting Before & Afters. At least not in the traditional sense. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being proud of how far you have come and celebrating it but for my page I will be posting something a bit different. What I will be doing is focusing on the internal work clients have been doing, how they feel, how confident they are. It won't be a comparison of their bodies but of their whole selves.
As mothers we are under an immense amount of pressure to be perfect. Well f%#* that. What we need is to be recognized for how amazing our bodies are. Celebrated for the amazing feat they have performed. Then it is out of love that we work to regain our strength inside and out. Because you are already strong & worthy of love.
You just have to allow yourself to see it.