Flaws, scars and imperfections
We are told we aren’t skinny enough. We are told we aren’t pretty enough. We’ve heard the -she would be so pretty if she just lost weight -comment. It’s been with us forever. It’s blasted on social media. It’s ingrained in us and has been forever.
I distinctly remember in 5th or 6th grade thinking I was fat. The school district started a lunch program where the kids could get the weight watchers lunch. Not the company WW, they just called it weight watchers as in watching your weight. Thanks. So not only then were we being fed the lie that we weren’t good enough and that we should be ashamed of our bodies, they decided to make us lunches to tell us. I can remember styrofoam cups of tuna and vegetables. And of course if you got that lunch you were weird and you must be fat. I have always been athletic and I have always had muscles. That was my body type. There was nothing wrong with it.
It’s shoved down our throats and in our faces how imperfect and flawed we are. Well guess what, everyone is imperfect and everyone is flawed. Perfection is a fucking myth. So many women and I would bet men as well struggle with this. It’s sad to watch. I see it every single day in my coaching business. It’s hard to break through these perceptions. We have so many scars.
I have struggled with binge eating, eating disorders, and body image issues all my life. It wasn’t until about the past year and half or so when I really got a good grasp on my self worth and decided it was time to let that shit go. It was time to see where I could go. It was time to work on me. And my working on me, I don’t mean just my body. I mean the whole me. The mental part of my perceptions about my body and my eating and my self.
Our bodies are amazing. We only get one. That’s the beautiful part. We are all different. Why would we ever want to be the same as anyone else? What is wrong with ourselves that we are constantly comparing and doing something different, wanting something more, or just constantly wanting something else? We are constantly looking and searching. Turn inward and you will find all the answers you need. You always hold the key to that lock. You just need to turn it.
So, I set out to turn my key.
In the fitness and nutrition industry there is pressure to look a certain way. As a trainer I felt that pressure. I was overweight by a lot. I was still strong, but I just did not feel comfortable. It was time for a change. It was time for me to change. Not because of the pressures of the industry, but because I wanted to feel better. I wanted to be more healthy. I wanted to see what I could do. My health was starting to suffer. My blood pressure was rising and I even went to the doctor because I thought for sure there was something wrong.
Side note — This is another thing that can happen to us that maybe these professionals don’t realize they do. I got cholesterol shamed by a nurse (even though my doc said I was okay) and I got fat shamed by a doctor. By fat shamed I don’t mean I was told I was fat, but I got that look. You know the one where you say something and they look at you like you’re full of shit. That’s the look. No denying that. They really should check their facial expressions.
I changed my channel. I started looking at things differently. I started being more positive. I started looking at what I could do. I started looking at how far I had come, not how much further I had to go – because in reality that never ends. This thing called life is here and now and as long as we get the privilege to be in it, we should take full advantage and live it.
When you see the Instagram accounts of the perfect bodies and the perfect skin and hair, it’s smoke and mirrors. There is cellulite hiding behind the perfect light. There are pimples hiding behind the perfect makeup. Nobody is perfect. We all have flaws. We all have imperfections. That is okay and that is completely normal. We need to stop. We need to be real. We need to be okay with being real. We need to start to feel comfortable with being real.
This pic of me shows stretch marks. It shows some loose skin from losing weight. The angle emphasizes that. I could have changed the angle. I could have air brushed the stretch marks out. But why? This is my body. I have worked hard for this body and this body has worked hard for me and together, we continue to work hard. It’s okay to want to look good. Make sure you are doing it for you and make sure you are working on the whole you, not just the body you.
I had a big transformation, but it didn’t happen over night. I was in a calorie deficit for a long time. Then I went into a building phase where I gained back 10 pounds in hopes of adding more muscle to my frame. Then I lost again and am hanging out in this in between phase. I like the in between. It’s a good place to be right now.
Start talking to your kids about body image. Help them understand that what they are seeing on social media and what is having a HUGE influence on them is not reality. You need to be their influence. Explain the importance of a healthy relationship with themselves and their body image. Start eating supper as a family. Start talking to them about food choices and how food affects their bodies. Sit down at the dinner table and talk about life. Talk about realities. Make sure your actions and words to yourself are positive.
Be positive. Your words are powerful and your brain listens to what you tell yourself. It’s okay to love yourself. That is a powerful thing. When trying to change, get in the journey and be present in that journey. You can do amazing things.
Flaws and imperfections are good. To me they are not negative at all. We are all flawed. We are all imperfect. There is nothing wrong with us. I love my flaws and imperfections. I embrace them. I like being different.