Why I Stopped Weighing Myself
I threw out my scale and stopped weighing myself years before I developed a healthy relationship with food. It was as if I subconsciously knew that it was feeding my judgmental self-talk. Don’t get me wrong, throwing away my scale didn’t change these negative thoughts overnight, but it did help me begin to cultivate a healthy relationship with my self image.
Back when I weighed myself, I would stand on my scale each time I went into the restroom to see just how much my weight had changed throughout the day. I allowed the changing numbers to feed my guilt and obsession with food. Can you relate? I would stand on the scale and let the number tell me what I needed to “fix” about myself, as if something were wrong with me when the numbers changed (weight fluctuation is totally normal, by the way).
You see, focusing on our weight and numbers causes us to become obsessed with trying to control our weight and coming up with ways to “fix” ourselves – which typically leads to dieting and restricting. It’s as if we’re telling ourselves that something is wrong with us and our willpower.
We aren’t able to fully focus on being present in our lives when we are constantly focused on what we’re eating and how we look.
Obviously, what we put into our bodies does affect our health, but our relationship with our bodies comes first. Once we accept ourselves where we’re at, we’re able to move forward without judgement. We’re then able to have the freedom to be patient with ourselves and develop the trust we need to truly connect with our body.
Do you find yourself constantly focusing on what you need to change about yourself? Do you think things like, “If only I could lose five pounds, then I’ll feel confident enough to go to the beach next month.” or “When I gain a little more endurance I’ll feel comfortable joining the gym”?
We set ourselves up for failure when we postpone the things we truly want to do in life. Our constant list of “if only’s” keeps us from being present and enjoying where we’re at right now.
It’s important to create a connection with ourselves so that we can feel present in every moment of our lives. This connection will allow us to appreciate the experiences that are right in front of us.
How would it feel if you gave yourself permission to enjoy where you are right now?
The next time any negative, self-judging thought comes up, ask yourself what’s really going on? What’s underneath those feelings that needs to be dealt with? Be kind and respectful towards your feelings. Oftentimes we push away difficult feelings because it causes overwhelm or brings up past memories that we don’t necessarily want to deal with, but connecting and acknowledging these feelings will allow us to become conscious of the way we treat ourselves. When we become aware of our self-talk, we can begin to understand the thoughts that lead us to obsession with our weight and our need to control this area of our lives.
Let’s look at this on a deeper level…what comes up every time you feel hurt or rejected? What are some of those thoughts?
I’m not worth it.
She/he was right about me.
I’ll never be good at anything.
Instead of pushing these feelings aside show yourself grace by being kind to yourself. Acknowledge the feeling by saying, “I’m sorry you feel this way” and ask yourself what’s really going on. Talk to yourself as you would treat a good friend if you overheard them talking like this. It may feel odd at first and you may experience resistance, this is normal, but the more you practice showing yourself kindness, the easier it will become. Understanding your feelings will help you create a healthy relationship with your body.
Self-kindess allows you to trust yourself enough to know how to fully nourish your body and give it what it needs.
Become conscious of the way you talk to yourself. You may want to try writing down your thoughts every hour (you can set a timer on your phone) to see what comes up. I do this exercise with many of my clients. The first time I did this exercise I was shocked at how many self criticizing thoughts ran through my head within one hour. Once you become aware of these thoughts, you can begin to replace them with kind, comforting thoughts.
So, do you ever feel like you need to “fix” something about yourself? How can you be kinder to your body this week?