• Thanks Linda! A great reminder of the most important thing I learned while at H3.

    From Kevin Wieland
    September 2, 2012

  • Linda…an interesting article. I especially like the comment, “exercise became a form of punishment and a way to eat more food”. Something many of us can relate to. Thankfully now exercise is part of my daily routine, not to be avoided, rather to be considered a privilege to be able do everyday. Weight control is an interesting study. Thanks for your article.

    From Trev Witt
    September 3, 2012

No Comparison

Some of the most unhappy years of my life were years when I wanted to be like everybody else. I spent a lot of time comparing myself to others and, in my mind, always coming up short. Plagued by a sense of insecurity and all my imaginary reasons for feeling “not good enough,” I turned to food as both a source of comfort and a hiding place. In response, exercise became a form of punishment and a way to earn more food—a vicious cycle and a miserable existence, to say the least.

After a lifetime of yo-yo dieting and obsessive exercise, I discovered that the key factor to managing my weight actually had little to do with calories, carbs or crunches and everything to do with how I perceived myself. Until I could love myself enough to take care of my body, mind and spirit, no amount of dieting or exercise could begin to solve the problem.

As a wellness coach, I am fully aware that a list of rules about what to eat and how much to exercise is not the complete answer. While it is important to nourish our bodies with healthy food and to exercise consistently, the very foundation of health is our sense of self-worth and the value we place on our existence here on earth.

In her video on self-love, author Louise Hay uses babies as an example. “Ever hear a baby say, ‘My hips are too big?’” she asks.

Think about a newborn baby who has no reason not to be totally in love with his/her body. He will be thoroughly fascinated with his fingers and tiny toes. She will be completely unselfconscious about her fat knees, pudgy belly and unruly hair. That’s because babies live in the moment. They love themselves unconditionally! It is only when they hear criticism from the outside world that they begin to question their value. It happens to the best of us. We grow up! We compare ourselves. And the effects are often debilitating.

Before we can change the behaviors that are impacting our health, we must first fully accept ourselves and value who we are. After all, would you tell an overweight child, “I’ll love you when you lose weight?” Of course not! So why would you love yourself any less now than you will when you lose 30 pounds? Start today. And if you find it difficult, try just being “in like” with yourself for a few hours. (You can always go back to hating yourself if it doesn’t work out!)

Loving yourself is not a sign of vanity or arrogance. It’s a matter of respecting and appreciating the magnificent being that you are—not will be, could be or should be—but already are.

Who wants to be like everybody else when you can be the one and only, original YOU!

Pop Quiz: Fill in the blanks

People often say that I’m good at _______________________________________.

My closest friends value me for my _____________________________________.

The qualities I value most in myself are __________________________________.

I’m proud of myself because ___________________________________________.

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