A friendly PSA reminder that it’s ok (and that you should) love your body exactly how it is right this minute. You may want to change certain things about your body, become stronger, become healthier, lose fat, gain muscle, and all that is fine, but you still can and should love your body as it is right now. It’s about treating ourselves well and stopping the negative self talk so that we can make the changes we want, accepting our biological realities in the process.

Most of us wouldn’t dream of speaking to another human being in the way we sometimes talk to ourselves. But we have no problem routinely addressing ourselves in a disrespectful, even demeaning, way. Those voices make weight loss, or any kind of change, difficult or even agonizing.

Where do they come from, these critical, demeaning voices? Mostly, they’re the collective, cruel voices of our past that we’ve internalized. Over time, we come to believe them as true. They’re incredibly powerful. And they can set up all kinds of horribly self-sabotaging situations.

Negative self talk can hamper your best efforts to lose weight, get a job, run three miles, begin a new relationship, and even move through your day in a peaceful fashion. It does nothing for you. Ain’t nobody got time for that sh*t!

Negative thoughts keep you stuck in the past (one cookie or a fleeting negative thought won’t sabotage your efforts, but rumination will, every time. Trust me on this.)

Most of the time, negative self-talk has nothing to do with what’s going on in the moment, in present time. Those critical, blaming voices are based almost entirely on past influences that don’t recognize who you are today. Staying in the past also keeps you in a comfortably familiar role, even if it’s a miserable one. Is that true for you? No matter how much you want to change, it’s scary to step out of a familiar pattern and into a new way of being — even if, ultimately, it will bring you joy and peace. Think about that.

Being mean toward yourself increases cortisol (and you know how I feel about you managing your cortisol hormone!)

Stress — any kind of stress, be it physical, mental or emotional — increases levels of cortisol which in turn encourage the storage of fat, especially around the belly. A new study published in the journal NeuroImage, found that study participants who engaged in self-criticism showed more brain activity in the regions associated with depression, anxiety and eating disorders. In other words, mean self-talk makes you eat more, and hold on to excess weight. Holding on to self loathing is like eating rat poison, and waiting for the rat to die.

You’ve got to be your own champion, your own best friend. No one else will do it for you. When the nasty little voice in your head is hurling unkind words at you, it’s impossible to simultaneously trust yourself. And trusting yourself is key to any kind of change — especially a positive change in dietary habits and learning how not to diet and how to properly nourish yourself.

Knowing that negative self-talk is a nasty habit is one thing. Stopping it is another issue altogether. The first step is to simply draw attention to the voice in your head. What is it saying? And whose voice is that anyway? Try this exercise: for one hour every day, become acutely aware of your negative self-talk. You don’t have to confront it right away. Take a step back from the voice, and listen to it with curiosity. Give it lots of space to express, but stay non-committal. For some people, 15 minutes of this practice is plenty.

Once you’ve become painfully aware of your own negative self-talk, talk back. If it’s possible for you, talk back out loud. Really loud. It’s freeing to holler at the voice that represents the critical people from your past. (Feel free to use foul language if you want, I do!)

Make a pact to give yourself three compliments a day, and after a while, it’ll become a habit that really affects your daily mood. And hey, while you’re at it, give three compliments a day to other people to help start a trend that builds self-esteem and promotes a healthy body image. You are all so good at supporting one another here in our community, make sure you turn that support inward.

Negative thoughts are a habit that is hard to break but not impossible. As Albert Einstein said so eloquently, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” So remember that to get to your goal, you need progress, not perfection.You’re here.

You are here to do great things, to do the hard things, to have adventures, to love your body, and to take care of your people. Don’t let that inner saboteur steal anymore time. The time is now. #coachpost#nutritionpost

adminkeith

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