Sunday, July 24, 2011

"BAD Body Image";The emotional connection

Because so many people struggle with the aspect of body image and the discomfort of how they 'feel' in their bodies, I thought I would bring this up for discussion.
For myself, coming to terms and putting this aspect of the eating disorder and recovery behind me, definitely took the longest.
Hindsight has been my best teacher, no doubt, and I'd like to share some of things I have come to realize and understand.
The 'fat' feelings and hatred for my body came directly from how I equated myself to how I looked. And how I saw myself was all connected to not believing I was worthy, loveable or even 'nice'....let alone someone who people would accept. Acceptance and fear of rejection, to me, was all centered around how I believed others 'saw' me, quite literally.
My self-confidence and self-esteem were directly entwined with how I saw and felt about my body.
I started challenging my beliefs first by noticing when I 'felt' more uncomfortable, and then I would literally 'tell' myself that it wasn't truly physical, but it was emotional. Then, I asked myself what am I feeling, and what am I holding in, and not expressing? I couldn't always answer that, but interrupting the process helped me to separate my physical discomfort from my thoughts. Eventually, whether I could come to a clear conclusion or not about what was going on, simply reminding myself that my discomfort was emotional in nature, helped me to move on and not engage in symptoms or self-degradation because of it.
I also began challenging my beliefs that people would reject me, which had held me captive for many many years. I expected to be shunned, but the beautiful thing was, I never was! The more I challenged this, and proved my beliefs wrong, the more confident I became.
This increase in self-acceptance and confidence helped me tremendously. I no longer feel the body discomfort. I do not equate my identity to my body or shape. And I approach life and it's experiences with my eyes wide open. If anyone has a problem with that, it's not my concern.
Without apology....♥

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