What irks me more than anything are the multiple times when society feels the need to provoke their definition of the classic quintessential healthy person upon us.  You know, like trying to hold up to the standard proverbial saying, “It’s just diet and exercise, Duh!” while flashing us with ripped 6 packs, lean models, coke-infused celebrities, and blown up Brazilian bottoms to make us feel less than superb.  So basically, what it teaches us is unless we look like that, we’re insignificant.  Awesome!  Let’s just white-knuckle our way through the pain, valid struggles and feel less than validated?  Great! Society laughs and replies with,  “Let’s do it and confuse all those that are suffering, snag them at their prime, rope them in to our program, and fuck with their head.”

Who gave anyone the right to tell us how to feed ourselves, to look, to exercise, to dress, and to trim down anyway?  In driving within a 10 mile radius today, I noticed: 3 billboards, 7 signs, 2 poster boards, 6 gyms, and 2 locations that specifically mentioned the words, “diet”, “lose weight”, “happy”, “detox”, “body”, and  “exercise.”  The world around us is desperately trying to lock us into their methods of the insane diet madness craze, that I hate to say, isn’t going away anytime soon.  Of course there are some exceptions to this notion,  just like with any industry, you have your good, bad, and ugly but these comments and statements solely focus on our external wants and needs.

When was the last time you saw a sign that read, “Love your body just as it is!  You’re beautiful just as you are!” on the side of the road?  Ha! My point exactly.

Please note, I’m not trying to bash society, downplay all positive that’s come from our fitness industry or become the latest Debbie Downer in today’s heathy communities. I do, however, want to express my concern on the impact it has on many of us.  Us, being the majority of population that struggles with our weight, self-esteem and place in this world.

We’ve been taught to live in this all or nothing, black and white, this or that society.  If I have this I’ll be happy, if I purchase that my life will be fulfilled, or if I get this procedure I’ll love myself to the moon and back.  Sure, it’s instant and gratifying, but fleeting nonetheless.  That momentary glimpse into that sense of happiness that’s quite frankly only achieved from the inside out.  Let me say this though, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve our looks, change up a few things or inject some liquid into our foreheads.  There is, however, a problem when that becomes our source of self confidence.  Plain and simple.  If we aren’t happy internally, there’s no amount of lipo, injections, tucks, changes, lifts, reductions of, implants, etc. that will ever be enough.

In turn, this way of thinking creates a perpetual snowball effect and our brains literally freak out. You know that feeling of desperation, impulsivity and the longing to “fix” whatever it is we’re struggling with?  I get it, that feeling sits close to home and at times I felt incredibly fearful and downright scared as f***.  We want to cut out the obsession, the noise, the intrusive self-destructive thoughts and the internal battle we face daily.  But how?

Mine was food.

“Should I eat this?”, “Will this make me gain weight?”, “Does this have too much sugar?”, “Is this going to help my stomach trim down?”, “What if I eat this and not that?”, “What should I eat for breakfast?”, the list goes on and on and on right?  It’s f’ing exhausting!  At times we just want to bury our heads, cry and ask ourselves how on earth did I get here?

I get it.  Let me preface with this…

We can’t change our thoughts and behaviors tomorrow, we can’t be a new person in 5 minutes, but we sure as hell can change them over time.  Nothing worth having ever comes easy and we don’t have to make this journey more difficult that it needs to be.  I PROMISE and I WANT TO HELP. I WANT TO SHARE MY STORY. 

I was rummaging through old journals of mine the other day and came across an excerpt that I wanted to share.  It might strike a cord with some and not for others, but to me it’s important to share the mere pain I was in in order to shed light on the topic above.

April 1999.

“My brain feels weird.  I’m writing weird poems that don’t even feel like my own.  The words flow but they don’t feel like mine.  I know I’m starving myself because I don’t feel right and my brain is burning.  I’m tired and proud that I couldn’t make it up the stairs today.”……….

Stayed tuned for part 2 of this blog soon…