Some people go through each day with confidence and with that overall happy-with-their-appearance feeling. They are lucky. They don’t even know how lucky they have it because there are some of us that suffer from body image issues or eating disorders. I am one of those people. I do hide it some of the time….while sometimes I am overly open about it. Today, I feel open. Today, I feel like I need to share a bit in case someone out there needs it.
Let me just say it sucks to have body image issues. It truly does. I am not alone in this, but many people do not understand it. Instead, some look at me in disgust. Yes, I know I am thin but sometimes my eyes, my mind, my entire being sees something different in the mirror and it is all consuming to the point of total destruction. Do not judge me or anyone else when you have not been through the same struggles for I do not judge you. We all have walked in different shoes. We have all conquered things in our life that make us stronger.
So for those of you that need it or for those of you that know someone that might; here are a few things that I have to do every single day to be the “healthy” and strong person I am today.
1. Beauty Really is Within
Do the right thing. I know it sounds simple, but it isn’t. It takes alot of courage and strength to stop negative behavior but doing good for yourself and only for yourself can speak volumes. Trust me. Be a good person and you will feel good. Do it for yourself or you will feel resentment. I am being vague and it is for a reason. Just be healthy and you know what I mean. Be strong and you will FEEL strong. Be a good person and you will FEEL good.
2. Tell Yourself Something Nice
I am overly critical of myself. I am a thin person yet I could find 20 things wrong with me right this second if I wanted to, but I don’t because I choose to focus on the positive. Every day I look in the mirror (yes, like the guy from Saturday Night Live) and I find something I like. I tell myself that my hair looks good or if it doesn’t then hopefully I will like my eyes that day. If I like nothing then I have to force myself to find something…anything. It sounds cheesy, but it works. Do not overly criticize yourself:
Believe me on this one. Many, many years ago, I got through depression and an eating disorder on my own by doing just these things. I know, I know…there are days where the mirror is like some crazy carnival mirror and your ass and face are ginormous so then do a double take….a triple take if need be. Focus on how you really look, focus on appreciating your body and realize noone is perfect, you are not perfect…you are unique. Realize that and love who you are.
3. Set a Goal
Do something. Get your ass out of the house. Sign up for a 10k and start training. Go back to college. Start a book club. Do something. Change up the boredom. Setting a goal (a good goal) can completely change your outlook on life and can make all the difference.
4. Be Honest
Be honest with yourself. Be honest with your friends. Be honest with your family. Just like being an alcoholic…you need to admit that you have something that you are struggling with. Do not be ashamed or embarrassed for we all struggle with our own demons. You just need to know how to control them.
5. Be POSITIVE
Lastly, and most importantly, be positive. Be positive about every aspect of your life. Be positive about the people in your life. It is harder than you think because negativity is a powerful being that grabs ahold of you (kinda like that darkness that grabbed ahold of Spiderman…sorry…the geekness came out for a second…) and letting it go is like pulling off dried glue bit by bit.
To be straight forward: It is a struggle. It might always be a struggle. You might have to stop hanging out with certain friends, you might have to leave your room filled with candles and depressing music that you play over and over while you lay on the floor with the lights off, you might have to force yourself to be social and smile. You might have to try to enjoy life. The outcome is that you actually will enjoy life.
Life is short so take the time and make the effort to enjoy it. You will fail sometimes in life, in anything that you do, but the point is to learn from those failures and become even stronger. Failure is not your enemy so do not let it be. Enjoy being you. Only you can.