It’s time to clear the air about diets and workouts. Our culture is obsessed with workout gimmicks and diet fads. So many people have a tenuous, even chaotic and negative, relationship with eating and exercising.
The mind and body connection can’t be forgotten when we are talking about what we eat and how we move each day. And the thoughts and energy you bring into your mealtimes and workouts greatly affect the outcome of whether you maintain a healthy weight or not. Other important points:
Point 1: Diets that create limits and “counting cultures” DON’T WORK for your long term wellness. They create disruptions between you and your relationship to your food. Food is vital; food is fuel for your life force! Food is a blessing and should be treated accordingly.
Point 2: If you are trying to lose weight, or otherwise want to stop cycles of dieting or extreme exercise, it’s time to overcome issues around shame, self-worth, stress, and control. All of these emotional states cause the metabolism in our bodies to become dysfunctional. Energy disturbances happen in the body. Digestion becomes less efficient, and the body becomes less functional overall. To overcome these issues takes time, and focused effort. And it must be supported by guidance from others (such as your wellness coach, research, healthy friends, etc), patience, and forgiveness. This includes forgiveness of yourself!
Point 3: Achieving healthy weight is more difficult when the body is not fulfilled. It is time to start honoring your body and respecting your needs– your needs for a variety of foods, your need for daily physical movement, your need for safety, and your need for love.
SO…. where do you go from here? Start with these three steps:
1) Ask for help–healthy friends, trainers, books, psychologists, therapists, coaches, dietitians, etc– and don’t get caught in the guilt cycle of trying to do it all on your own and failing.
2) Begin to structure a daily practice of gratitude and forgiveness. It’s as simple as taking 5 minutes by yourself to close your eyes in quiet and give thanks for anything, person, or event. And then silently speaking out from your heart to forgive any person, including yourself for anything that’s weighing on your heart. Play with this practice and make it your own– perhaps you choose to pray during this time, or create mantras, or even write a note or diary entry.
3) Bring awareness to your energy when it comes to eating and exercising. If dread, pain, shame, etc come up, it’s time to change the script for yourself! Your body is sacred and beautiful, and a finely made instrument for accomplishing amazing things. Tell yourself this, and practice being thankful for all that your body does, and all that the food you eat does to help you. Honor your body with fresh foods whenever possible, and practice listening to your body’s needs, when you feel full, when you feel thirsty, when you want to jump around or go for a jog.
As you tend to your body and state of mind, everything works better and better from the inside out!
Written by Aja Uranga-Foster, Holistic Life Coach