Over and over again it has been proven to me that within self love lies the key to food and body freedom. I’ve also come to learn that the relationship you have with yourself is the most important relationship you will have in your life.
Odds are, if you’re resisting embracing self love, this is where you need to go. It goes that way for just about anything we resist or fear in life.
So, what does self love even mean?
When I’m talking self love, I’m talking the unconditional love, compassion and respect for every part of yourself – your dark and your light – that is so deep, so beautiful and so all-encompassing that it nourishes every cell of your being.
Since you’re completely nourished and so filled up with love, you only choose situations, relationships, opportunities and actions towards yourself and others that are a reflection of this unconditional love, compassion and respect.
What self love is not…
1. Self love is not selfish. Self love and showing up for yourself daily is one of the least selfish things you can do. How can you expect to show up in the world and give love to others if you’re not taking care of yourself first? Self love means you’ll be so filled that you can deliver in every other aspect of your life, as well as settle for nothing less than the very best for yourself and those you love.
2. Trying to please others and giving so much of yourself away that your tank is empty and you have nothing left to give yourself. This one usually results in exhaustion, resentment towards others, and feeling unlovable or broken unless you’re pleasing someone else.
3. A strong focus on self-confidence and achievement, so much so that your hustle for achievement has you fail to tend to yourself with compassion and self-care. This one usually results in burning out and feeling like a failure.
4. Self-awareness and observation, but no, or very little self-trust or belief in yourself to make your dreams a reality or to overcome what you’re going through. This usually results in withholding self-expression, not putting your gifts to use, not taking risks that will benefit you, feeling stuck, wanting more and feeling empty or like something is always missing.
5. Self-pleasure and fun without honor, self-respect and knowing your worth. Ever heard of looking for love in all the wrong places? That’s this! This one usually leaves you with unhealthy relationships and emotional gaps that you’re trying to fill with anything but what will actually fill you up (hint hint: self love)
6. Self-esteem and strength, but not standing for yourself and what your worth in relationship or life situations. This one typically looks like success on the outside but self-destructive on the inside, or having it all together in career but settling for crumbs in relationships (both romantic and friendships).
7. Waiting to love yourself until you are _____. This looks like, I love myself but I know I will love myself more and accept myself when I’m the perfect weight, or when I have the perfect job, or when I achieve this. Perfection never comes. This one results in constant waiting to live, constant disappointment and constant never feeling good enough.
Do you recognize yourself in any of the above?
My paradigm has changed form many times. I used to fall into category one, taking care of everyone else and so worried about people pleasing that I neglected myself and my needs, as well as my self-expression. Then I got so burned that I switched to the total opposite, number two. No one could mess with me but I was hustling so hard that my self-care suffered.
Category seven has popped its ugly little head up at times too…I’m sure you’ve heard that voice too! You know the, I’ll be happy when… or I’ll do this for myself when…
All of the above are equally detrimental to your overall happiness. They rob you of joy, they keep you stuck, and the keep you missing out on so much that this beautiful life has to offer.
What does this have to do with your health and your relationship with your body and food?
Everything. Self-sabotage is born from the list above. You know at your core that you are worth more than anything in those seven categories above, so if you’re playing small and stuck in any of them then it’s very likely that you’ll reach out to something outside of you for the love you’re craving…
…or to help stuff down your true desires and what you really know you deserve…
…or to numb it all together…The pain from self-neglect can be unbearable at times so why not reach for something that will stop the pain if even for just a few moments, right?!
I get it, I’ve been there! Here’s the thing, no amount of food in the world will fill up a self-love deficit. Nothing will actually.
No shopping, no drugs, no sex, no alcohol, no career, no car, no house, no lover, no anything will ever fill a self-love deficit. That’s just the truth.
You will be left searching, when all along the answers to your happiness have been inside of you the entire time.
Don’t beat yourself up. Society sets us up to operate from the list of the seven above. Most of us live our lives as if we don’t deserve any of our own time or energy. We work jobs we hate and stress ourselves out as we are serving someone else’s dream. We rarely say “no” to things that we don’t have time for, things that bring us anxiety, or even worse…things that don’t line up with who we are authentically just to please others.
We do this for a while and it all seems to be ok. Then there we are… sitting with diagnosed depression, panic attacks, full blown anxiety, looking for pleasure in things outside of ourselves to distract us or numb ourselves, sleeping disorders, “ADD”, burnout, overwhelm, drinking 4 cups of coffee just to get through the day, sadness, feeling empty inside, you name it…
So, what do you do?
It takes a few things. First, you must fundamentally alter your belief system and learn to embrace all of yourself.
Secondly and while you’re working on your beliefs, you must ACT! Positive and loving thoughts are great and truly have so much power, but to harness their full potential you must take action.
What does self-love in action look like?
Daily self-care and time for just you, no matter what.
Tony Robbins says to never learn something without taking at least one immediate action to implement it. There’s a reason he does this. Action helps to change your habit patterns and behavior, it leads to momentum and it leads to results!
What self love does…
Self-care and self love allow you to function at your very best so you can share yourself and your gifts with the world. It allows you to show up fully for yourself, for your family and for your life.
When you love yourself unconditionally, you naturally choose health-giving foods and activities that allow you to live your best life.
Warning: Self-care may feel inconvenient at times. It may feel like you don’t “deserve” it or that you don’t have time for it, but everything can be figured out if you’re committed.
Bonus: Once you get adjusted, this new way of living becomes habitual and not so much work. You’re sense of well-being and happiness in your life and in the life of those around you will keep you motivated!
Self Care Inspiration:
- Make time for movement that feels really good! Not every workout has to be hard and intense; do what feels right. Your body will thank you for it!
- Choose whole foods that nourish and honor your body.
- Listen to some of your favorite music, light candles and take a nice long relaxing bath.
- Buy some nice smelling organic massage oil and give yourself a body rub and become one with your body.
- Take a walk in nature and focus on connection and presence.
In the comments below, please let us know what self care practice you’ll be implementing this week! You’re worth it!
Always remember, we’re in this together!
After turning her own yo-yo weight loss and gain, binge and emotional eating and severe health complications around, Brittany now leads other women internationally to create a life fueled by freedom instead of diets, weight and food obsession as a Blogger, Speaker and International Master Coach. People come to her with issues around their health, eating and weight and a total transformation ends up taking place at their core.
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