Our society low-key teaches us two things about fat people. The first, fat men and women cannot be sexy and the second being fat is shameful and should be hidden. We believe these things to be true, without ever considering an alternative. We’ll get to the alternative in a bit but first let’s focus on the shame of being fat.
When I gave birth to my first child at 21, almost 11 years ago, I gained nearly 100 pounds. I abandoned friendships, minimized social movements, and became a recluse. Why? Because I was fat and afraid of the judgment I’d receive because of it. I associated being thin with being happy and was hell bent on losing weight for that purpose alone.For months, years even, I kept telling myself that as soon as I lose X amount of pounds I would be happy again and my life would instantly change and be better. Fast forward to two years later when stress induced weight loss happened and I lost ALL 100 pounds. I lost a lot of weight & found skinny but where in the heck was my happy? No where in sight. The numbers on the scale changed. I was treated differently by some people and that felt good but I still felt deficient on the inside.
Something was missing. I still felt unworthy. My insecurity still raged. I continued to compare myself to everyone else wondering if I would ever be good enough.Losing weight did nothing to improve the way that I felt about myself.
With that quick knowledge check on what weight loss can and cannot give you–let’s dive into 3 mindset shifts you can make for weight loss consistency.
one: accept yourself as you are, while you strive for weight loss
If you read nothing else in this post, read this one paragraph: You cannot hate yourself and simultaneously enjoy the good parts of this life. Self hate cannot be contained, it muddies the waters of all things good and joyous in the world. There is no way possible for you to hate yourself & simultaneously enjoy the good in this world.FACTS: There are millions of happy and fat people in the world and to start losing weight, you’ll have to at least feign fat and happy for a long while.
DISCLAIMER: I’m not a psychiatrist. I’m not licensed to diagnose any disorder of any kind. I do not have credentials to offer any medical advise what-so-ever.All I have is 31 years of experience fighting with myself to become this ideal body that I was convinced would make me happier. I’ve been obese and I’ve been “skinny” many times in my life and in each frame, sadness, unworthiness, self intolerance, continued to exist.
Losing weight never made me “happy.” Weight loss provided, at most, a minimal confidence booster but, on a deeper level, weight loss did little to change how I felt about myself. I ditched the idea that I NEED TO LOSE WEIGHT TO BE HAPPY & went towards the journey with a sturdier “why” in place. I accepted my body for what it was, as it was, and moved towards my goal of weight loss without the intense pressure to lose weight, and lose it really really fast.When I decided that I WANTED to lose weight, and did not NEED it to be happy, this became THE GAME CHANGER. I could get my nails done, do my hair, and put on an outfit that made me feel beautiful, in my fat body. There was no sadness about my existent body & rush to shed the weight. There was just me and this current body striving for my solidified why that had nothing to do with the reflection in the mirror. Oh, it was deeper than skin, and this is what created the consistency.
final takeaway: if you can accept yourself as you are right now, losing weight loses it’s pressure & is easier to sustain.
One of the very first things I did when I began the journey to self love was surround myself with people who made me feel good about my body.
If these people don’t exists in real life, you can find people who resemble you on social media. Some of the very first body acceptance women that made me feel like a fat fucking goddess was on Instagram.
There are thousands of women (and men) fucking shit up on the internet. There are hundreds of hashtags you can search on Instagram that will lead you right to them. Seek them out and take in the confident sexiness they exude.
Seeing fierce women like, Tess Holiday and Gabi Fresh (and so many others) kill shit in clothes that society explicitly reserves for the thin will light a fire in you. A blaze, bitch.
This kind of confidence coming from women that we’ve been told are too big to exude sexiness gives you permission to take your power back! The way their clothes don’t try to hide rolls of fat. How effortlessly they embrace the camera will almost immediately change your perspective on who can be sexy. Because these women are hot AND fat.
Surrounding yourself with these kind of images opens up a brand new internal dialogue. You’ll start to question your own beliefs about your body. You’ll begin to ask yourself questions like how the hell can I get this way? And then something magical happens within you. You start to see yourself as attractive (sexy even) too.
Maybe you’ll see these women and feel nothing but repulsion. If this is the case, I suggest you keep doing the work to acceptance because this is akin to being repulsed to folk of darker shades, or thinner lips–it’s rooted in self hate.
Take Action: Dump ANYONE Who Makes You Feel Unworthy
3) accept the descriptor, & decide if their approval matters
First of all, you are worth being loved by all that you encounter, if this is what you wish. Why? Because you are here. You have value for being the person that you are, period.
Second, you have fat but you are not fat and fat alone.
Can fat be people attractive? Yes. Can fat people have attractive qualities about them? Damn right. Can fat people be fun to be around? Of course they can. Can fat people give others physical pleasure? Ugh, hell yeah (fat lady with a man and three children here, somebody is getting it in with this fattie).
Anybody that treats you poorly because you are fat, is not worth the effort to keep them in your life.
The compliment from an acquaintance or a stranger isn’t what creates that feel good feeling. Because the verbiage of the compliment itself means nothing. What gives you that good feeling is the the fact that you have accepted and/or believe the compliment to be true. “Why yes, I do look good don’t I?” It’s the same concept when someone insults you. You only feel bad about an insult if you find some truth in it.
Being called fat cannot hurt you if you have already accepted the descriptor. Currently, you are fat and that’s fine–thats what you look like on the outside. Why does this bother you if it is true? You’ve attached negative connotations to a word that is meant to describe. Are you offended when someone describes you as black (if your skin is black) or white (if your skin is white)? No. Because it’s an accurate description of what you look like.
When you stop giving meaningless descriptors or labels control over your sense of self and worth you can begin healing.
A lot of times we make a big deal about the opinions of others because we are drawing our sense of worth from what they think of us. It’s completely normal to do so but people with a healthy self esteem know when to throw the deuces to “they”. Who is they anyway? And why have we given them so much power over how we feel about us?
girl, we all struggle with body image issues
If you were rail thin and someone pointed it out, because of your mindset, this would be a dagger to the heart. Because of your mindset any word can be used against you. Imagine how hard it will be to navigate the world when you are constantly allowing the fleeting opinions of others to dictate how you should feel about yourself. Folk will find a flaw in every and anything they can.
Furthermore, you have the power to accept yourself as you are, despite the opinion of people who don’t suffer with you.
Action step: Accept the descriptor. Tell yourself “I am fat, and that is okay because it is currently what I look like.” Take the sting out of the word fat by using it freely.
None of this will come easy. It will take practice. Make it a habit to look at yourself and your fatness in a different light.
You have power, you’re worthy of love and light, and you can achieve all that you set out to do.
No amount of weight loss can give that to you. As you go into your journey remember who the fuck you are on the inside and allow time for the outside to catch up to all that heroic shit you exude.
I’d love to know what you think about these suggestions. Are they do-able? can you do it? Do you have any body love personalities you can suggest to us? Let me know in the comments!
Love you guys! Love yourself.