It really doesn’t matter how long I’ve been in recovery from my eating disorder- there are still moments or even days when body image comes up for me- the difference now is that I know what to do to support myself. In the past it may have sent me into a downward spiral- back into a diet/ restrict and binge cycle.
So what do you do when you just are “having one of those days?” When the voices don’t stop, the negative self-talk is damaging, and things are just feeling a little dark and hopeless in your life.
I’m here for you AND these are actions steps you can take to support yourself.
AVOID THE MIRROR
When you are feeling “judgy”- stay away from the mirror. If you know you have nothing nice to say to yourself body checking will only make a small thought turn into sending you down the rabbit hole of negativity. Don’t allow the voices to win. Stay away from the mirror until you are feeling like you are in a better place. Once you feel like you can look in the mirror and send loving thoughts to yourself just AVOID IT!
Affirming beliefs are extremely powerful. You may think they are a waste of time but I’m telling you if you practice saying positive and calming beliefs it can totally get you out of a funk. Here are my favorite affirmations to use on a bad body image day (you can make up your own too!)
-I am worthy no matter what my body looks like.
-I choose to not care what others think of me.
-This is just a feeling, it will pass.
-I am safe, no one is judging me.
-I choose to NOT listen to these voices. I know they are lies.
-I am a good person; I have so many people in my life that love me the way I am.
-Even though I don’t completely love myself right now, I am doing the best I know how.
-Food is not the enemy, food is nourishment. I eat with my intuition, I trust my body.
You can create ANY affirmations that you want- as long as they give you a sense of calm when you say them aloud. You can’t get it wrong.
Think about what you are doing in this very moment. Right now, I'm at the park, with my two dogs, the sun is shinning, and I’m writing. Nothing else is happening in my world except what I am doing right now in this very moment. SO when you are feeling overwhelmed just start to be aware of what’s actually happening in your world. Are you simply watching TV? Are you out for a walk? Are you shopping? Are you hanging out with friends? Whatever it is just start getting present. You can even just notice the sky or whatever scenery is surrounding you. This will ground you and help you with the wandering negative thoughts. The point is - YOU ARE SAFE.
GO ON A WALK
If you have been following me for a while now you may or may not know that I love going outside in the sunshine with my two dogs, and taking a nice walk. It's something about getting outside, breathing in the fresh air, and moving my body that totally makes me feel like I've had a soul experience. So one of the best pieces of advice I can give someone who's in a funk- get outside! It doesn't have to be a long walk and it doesn't have to be a face paced walk. It really doesn't have to be anything- it can be whatever you want it to be. So the next time you are feeling off or having that negative body talk try to shake off those feelings with a walk and some breathing. It clears your head- that's for sure.
WEAR COMFORTABLE CLOTHES
The other day I was wearing pants that were just too tight on my stomach. It was super uncomfortable and literally was hurting my stomach. I had to roll the pants down just to get relief. I should have known from the start that they just weren't the right pants to wear but I went against my judgement and wore them anyway. No wonder I had an off day with body image that day! I was uncomfortable and that put more focus and awareness on my body- the more focus I have on my body the more room there is to start judging. This is why it's so important to wear clothes that fit. The make you feel good. That don't make you hesitate before you walk out the door. We all have those clothes that we keep for some reason that every time we wear them it just never goes well. Get rid of them! Comfy doesn't mean you can't wear something sexy, fitted, or revealing- it's literally WHATEVER is comfortable to you- my favorite clothes to wear are yoga pants or running shorts with a tank top/ sweater depending on if it's hot a cold- I'm all about looser fit- even if it means I wear a size up I don't care- it's all about comfort for me :)
There is SO MUCH support out there:
You can read a book- I recommend Body Kindness
You can reach out to our private FB group The Body Love Tribe
You can chat with NEDA: Free CHATLINE with NEDA
Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Talk to me: Schedule a call with me
Get group support: Join The Body Love Society
Go look at BOPO Instagram accounts:
There are SO many more accounts to follow- on the hard days go and get lost in the BOPO world on Instagram- it's a beautiful place!!!
I would also suggest to find your favorite YouTube channel and podcast (Call Me Body Positive-coming soon!!)
Just know there are resources out there to support you.
YOU ARE WORHTY
YOU ARE LOVED
YOU ARE ENOUGH
Also refer back here when you need a safe space because I know those bad body image days can get rough- you are not alone!!
With love + body empowerment,