Letters are such an amazing form of communication. They allow us to fully formulate our thoughts before we say something we can’t take back. The written word is also very powerful. It allows our brain to process our thoughts more effectively. I want you to write a series of letters to your body. The first would be from your ideal body self to your current body self. Really let your current body self have it. It will be incredibly painful, but these are all things you say to yourself anyway. Anytime you call your body ugly or lazy, this is your ideal body self shaming your current body, so you are just writing these things down. Get very specific and detailed.
Next, write a letter from your current body to your ideal body. Take some time to really process that communication exchange. If you have been struggling with how you feel about your body, it is because these two parts of you are battling. It is probably the shame that keeps the battle going. You would never say such harsh things to your worst enemy, yet these are thoughts you have on an ongoing basis. No wonder you are stuck!!
Finally, write the letters through a lens of compassion. Write the letters as if you were talking to your best friend, sister, or child. Use encouraging and nurturing words. Come from a place of love instead of hate. What would you notice? As much as we try to motivate ourselves with the stick, a carrot tends to be far more effective and far less painful. I hope you will try this exercise, but at the very least, the next time you start to speak negatively to your body, ask yourself how well that has worked in the past. My guess is that you wouldn’t be reading this, if it had!
The bottom line is that you don’t have to love everything about your body. However, until you respect it and treat it with compassion, you won’t be able to change anything you don’t like. You take care of the things and people you like. The people and things you hate, not so much.
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