Friday, March 22, 2013

Perfection Isn't Reality and Yet...

“Part of abandoning the all-or-nothing mentality is allowing yourself room for setbacks. We are bound to have lapses on the road to health and wellness, but it is critical that we learn how to handle small failures positively so that we can minimize their long-term destructive effects. One setback is one setback—it is not the end of the world, nor is it the end of your journey toward a better you.” -Jillian Michaels

My entire life, losing weight was centered around the idea of this image of perfection. Movie stars, magazines, television programs all told me what perfection was "supposed to be". Every spring break I was "supposed to" have a beach body for bikini season and the same for every summer. As someone who absolutely loathed bathing suites, and still does, all this did was make me angry. If I got invited to anything that involved a water activity, I immediately could feel my throat closing and my heart beating 90 miles an hour. I would start thinking of reasons why I couldn't attend. What can I say, kids are super judgmental and I was my own worst critic.

As an adult though I had an epiphany the other day: if I want to swim, go skiing, get in a hot tub, or head to the beach for a few days, I should buy a suite that fits and bask in all my imperfection. Seriously, who looks like Victoria Secret models aside from Victoria Secret models. NO ONE. Yes, there are women that are attractive and are at the gym every free second they have, but I can tell you that's not the majority. The majority of women are trying to get an hour in 3 or 4 times a week, if they're lucky. You know what?! That's okay. This idea of perfection or nothing is silly. Perfection is a social construct that isn't real.

Maybe I took one too many sociology classes but bear with me for a moment. Surely you've heard this concept that society tells us what pretty is or what we should look like. Whether you want it to or not, it does. We see, everywhere we look, what a woman is "supposed to be". We grow up believing that we have to reach this level of flawlessness that is created out in media world. I am so confused by this mostly because that ideal image isn't real. Hear that: IT ISN'T REAL.

There are so many of us that think that there's a magic pant size or a magic number on a scale that is going to send us into perfection-ville and all our problems will cease to exist. That isn't real either. There is NO magic and this idea that we have created solely in our minds of a perfect us isn't correct. Am I saying embrace the unhealthiness that is you? Love that you're 100lbs overweight and miserable? No. Most people I know are not happy being overweight and sedentary. Our bodies were made to move and to eat foods that weren't processed and reprocessed and reprocessed again. The importance here is to realize that if you're unhappy, for heaven sakes, do SOMETHING! Start walking. Make small changes. Instead of a hamburger, eat half a hamburger and order something besides fries. That's just one example of many.

I am an emotional eater and I know that because every time something stresses me out all I can think about is going somewhere to eat something I like to make myself feel better. Once I realized that about myself, I now have the power to change it. I just suffer through the pain, maybe say a prayer, cry, punch something, not someone, although that could be effective, and keep going

This journey is not easy. Let me repeat that: Trying to eat healthy and make the right decisions for a quality life is NOT EASY. If you choose to do it the right way, it will never be easy. If you're an emotional eater like me, it's a constant fight between emotion and logic. "I want to eat that cookie. I WANT that cookie! I'll feel better. Just a bite. Just let me lick it...No! Do you know how long you'll have to stay on the ellipical if you eat that?! That hover-round is calling your name. If you keep eating like this you'll have a grabbing stick in no time." And so it goes...

My main goal is to tell myself every day not to be an all or nothing person. I have a prayer that I was saying every day for a while, "God, help me not to be an all or nothing person. I need the middle ground right now." Simple but effective. There's nothing more freeing than having control of your emotions and knowing that you don't need to rely on a substance of any kind to get you through the day. It's freeing to know that perfection is not reality and that I don't tell myself that to just feel better BUT because that is TRUTH. My "perfection", my self-worth, is based on the goals I set for myself that are realistic, that I can meet and be proud to reach. Perfection is realizing there is no perfection.

27lbs. down. 55ish to go.    

1 comment:

  1. The best weight for you is the one you are comfortable with. However, there is such an important concept as 'healthy weight'. In order to achieve and keep it you have to develop healthy eating habits. I’ve read somewhere that even if you attend gym every day but keep eating junk food – you are wasting your time. Lots of useful advices on proper nutrition I have found here They provide special tips for women and lots of motivative ideas!