Daily, I get a fair share of inquiries into joining Team BC. And the recurring theme via email, private message and in person is that there is quite a few (thousand, million) women who are really mad at their bodies. “I hate my body,” or “I hate my (insert various body parts, stomach, thigh/glutes being the usual suspects)”.
“I can’t believe I ended up with Type 2 diabetes,” says a self-proclaimed couch potato who hasn’t been active in over seven years. And hasn’t eaten well all through their life. Really? You pumped sugar into your body for five straight decades and you’re mystified?
“My body is not performing,” says another. Yet this person told me point blank that they burn the candle at both ends, live a high-stress life, don’t sleep, work 90-plus hours a week, hammers the bejeezus out of herself in the gym seven days a week and often berates herself in the mirror upon waking and before bed — and she thinks her body is letting HER down?
“I hate my body,” said a third. Who even cares who this one is, because it’s approximately 600 million of you? Well guess what? Your body probably hates you back for years of self-loathing.
Let me tell you something about YOUR body. I remember being really, really naughty one year. I’m going to share something I have never really told anyone before. I was about 19 at the time and home from uni and my little brother, who was about 9 at the time, came home from school and told me whilst bawling his eyes out that a kid was constantly picking on him and that he got ‘beaten up’ by him on this particular day.
My brother was sad, and scared because he didn’t want to get on the school bus again. Well, low and behold, that very night my brother and I were shopping down the street and we passed said kid. Well, I admit, I bailed him up against a shop front and said my piece to him.
And I told him in no uncertain terms that he would have me to deal with if he ever touched my brother again. I don’t think I said things in a very nice way. And I am pretty sure I was fairly menacing. I later told my mother the story and she said, “You were in cub protect mode.” I was doing what a mother bear would do.
And this is what your body does for you.
It loves you like the best mother bear in the world loves her Gerber baby cub — with a fierce, visceral, snarling love that will do anything to protect you. Boy, are you friggin lucky.
If you’re mad because you’re over-fat, feeling cruddy, out of shape, riddled with aches and pains, etc. you should start by taking a good, hard, honest look at how you’ve treated that ever-patient physique of yours.
- What have you fed (or not fed) your body?
- How do you rest your body? How long do you sleep every night, and how well? How do you still your mind and give it serenity?
- What chemicals do you put into your body? What industrial pharmaceutical products do you eat, spray, inhale, bathe in, or smear?
- How do you move your body? Do you move it at all, or jam it into a chair or car for several hours?
- Do you let your body out to play in its natural environment? Do you see sunlight or greenery, or breathe fresh air, or feel the change in temperature every day?
- Do you say nice things to your body? Do you high-five it when it comes through for you? Do you high-five it just for existing and being a marvellous triumph of engineering?
- Do you subject your body to a constant cacophony of sensory overload and stress?
- When was the last time you wrapped your arms around yourself and gave yourself a big smushy hug? When you patted your tummy and felt its softness happily, instead of hating it for not being a hardened washboard? (Seriously, when the heck did ‘washboard abs’ become a goal that otherwise reasonable and intelligent women pursued? Evolution is laughing in your face, ladies. Suggest revising goal to ‘squatter’s ass’.)
Look girls, when certain bits of your body bother you, you have to go, “This body part that’s bugging me? I’m not going to let it bug me anymore.”
You are honestly, literally, one single choice away from feeling good about YOU. You can choose RIGHT NOW where you want to move and how you want to interact with those things you’re struggling with.Show up. Unapologetic. And if there’s resistance, give yourself a mental pep talk and bring the confidence and conviction. Because why not? Who else will? And your body will be grateful for it – I promise you.