Ok, so you’re gaining weight. So what? You’re a living thing. Unless you’re super strict with diet and exercise 24/7/365, or unless you have some type of health issue that causes you to not be able to gain weight, you’re probably going to gain some weight at some point in your life. If you’re like most people, you’ll go through multiple periods in life where your body will change and your weight will increase anywhere from a few pounds to enough pounds to change your appearance considerably. It’s not a big deal. It’s just weight. You can see it as an opportunity to experience yourself in some of the different faces and bodies that are possible depending on how much weight you gain. Get to know each version of you and learn to love them all.
Yes, it can be hard to love yourself as a human being living in a world that encourages you to compare yourself to a standard and hate or love yourself depending on how you measure up, but…
There is never reason to feel ashamed of your body because of your weight, your size, your shape or for any reason. Instead of focusing on your size and weight in terms of how you measure up or don’t measure up to what you feel you have to look like in order to deserve to feel happy and comfortable in your skin, focus on being healthy and strong. Focus on being loving and kind to yourself. Nourish your mind and your soul right now because they need your care and concern. Because when you feel such deep shame over your weight, it means your mind is doing some seriously faulty processing. And the negativity you are building up is burrowing into your soul and spreading out into your whole being to create a toxicity that will keep growing and doing greater damage as it circles round and round in an twisted cycle of self hate. You need to stop right now. You gained weight. It’s okay. Unless it’s due to some serious health issue that’s developing, it’s not a crisis. Make the necessary adjustments in order to feel comfortable in your body.
I’ve been alive for a long time and my body has gone through a lot. I’ve been dealing with body shame issues for decades. But I feel like I’ve learned a lot from my experiences, and I’ve come a long way. And I want to be part of the conversation that aims to help people go through their life without adding needless misery over their weight.
So with that said, here’s my advice for anyone struggling with body image issues and weight concerns that affect how they feel from day to day.
Don’t buy into the idea that you’re more or less worthy depending on how much you weigh and the size clothes you wear.
Whether you wear extra small, small, medium, large, extra large, extra extra large or bigger–whether you weigh 90 pounds or 300–love your body and take care of it so it can keep doing the job of carrying you through the journey of your life. Focus on your health and wellness. Do not focus on how much more you weigh than society tells you is ideal to weigh. Don’t focus on what size you wear or how little like the accepted ideal your body is shaped. Don’t just accept it when they present you with an image and tell you that’s how you should aspire to look.
Aspire to take the best possible care of the body that you have.
Break the habit for loving and admiring other people’s body more than you love and admire your own. Your body needs your focus and your energy. It needs your love and nurturing. It needs your daily gratitude. And if you’re going to be celebrating body types, it had better be your own. Think about what you’re doing when you celebrate other body types while hating your own.
Question why you hate your body.
Ask yourself these questions:
- How do societal standards of beauty influence my perception of my own body?
- Have I ever critically examined the media and advertising messages that contribute to my negative body image?
- What role does comparison with others play in my feelings of dissatisfaction with my body?
- Have I considered the impact of social media on my body image and self-esteem?
- Do I believe that my worth as a person is solely based on my physical appearance?
- Have I ever challenged the unrealistic expectations placed on bodies by society?
- How have cultural norms and ideals shaped my perception of beauty and influenced my body dissatisfaction?
- Have I considered the harmful effects of body shaming and how it perpetuates negative self-perception?
- Am I aware of the diversity and beauty of different body types and sizes beyond societal ideals?
- What role does self-compassion and self-acceptance play in cultivating a positive body image?
- How do my personal experiences and relationships contribute to my negative body image?
- Have I explored the connection between my body image and my overall mental and emotional well-being?
- Do I recognize that my body is more than just its appearance and that it serves me in various ways?
- Have I considered the impact of negative body image on my overall quality of life and self-confidence?
- How would my life change if I shifted my focus from hating my body to embracing and appreciating it?
- What steps can I take to challenge and redefine societal beauty standards within my own life?
- How can I surround myself with positive influences and supportive communities that celebrate diverse bodies?
- Am I willing to challenge negative self-talk and actively practice self-love and body acceptance?
- How can I prioritize self-care and engage in activities that promote body positivity and appreciation?
Remember, the goal of these questions is to encourage self-reflection and critical thinking, ultimately helping you explore the reasons behind your negative body image and take steps towards self-acceptance and appreciation.
Prioritize unlearning the false lessons you’ve been taught that lead to your inability to love and accept yourself in any body.
Remember that the thing about weight is it can usually always be shed if you want to shed it. And even if you want to shed it but struggle, it’s still not a big deal unless the amount of weight you’re carrying poses a real health risk.
Here are some final words (from my robot assistant Countess X) that I think anyone wanting to change their attitude toward their body when they gain weight could find useful:
My body has carried me through every triumph, setback, adventure, and ordinary day. It deserves respect, nourishment, and kindness, not judgment and disdain. I’m choosing to redefine my narrative and see my body as more than a number on a scale, as more than the size of clothes it fits into. This is me accepting that bodies change, grow, and evolve, and that this process is as natural as breathing. As long as I am healthy, active, and feeling good about myself, the specific number that defines my weight or the size of my clothes should not, and will not, dictate my worth or happiness.
I could not put it more perfectly myself. Peace be with you. Love yourself. Love your body when it’s not perfect too. It needs your love more then than when it’s looking exactly how you want it to look. Best of luck in your journey. Stay fit. Stay strong.