How many images and cartoons can you think of that involve a negative experience with a scale? Example 1, Example 2, Example 3 Yet, so many continue to step on it! If you weigh daily, are emotionally affected by the number reflected, or panic over an increase, you could benefit from abandoning the scale. Like many, I grew up with a scale in the house and purchased one when I was in college. Worst idea of my life! I was on that thing constantly, especially when I started gaining weight my sophomore year. Looking back, I blame my diet of pasta! Hey, it was cheap. When the battery in my digital scale went out about 5 years ago I never replaced it. In fact, I have no idea where my scale is and I don’t care to have it anymore.
Story time, last week I had a doctor’s appointment and I am the heaviest I have ever been. This isn’t shocking because over the last few year I have worked out and gained muscle. We all know muscle weighs more than fat. But in the last few months I haven’t felt comfortable in my clothes and this is for two reasons; my diet has been terrible and my exercising has declined. With adjustments to both I know I’ll be back to fitting comfortably in my clothes. Rather than berating myself with negative self-talk simply because of what the scale has to say I’m doing something about it.
If you are someone who weighs themselves frequently, I challenge you to abandon the scale and consider these thoughts:
Don’t let it define you. A scale cannot measure your IQ, your relationship with others, or your gumption and achievements. Try positive self-talk and see where it gets you mentally. Building self-confidence at any stage in life is so important. While you’re at it, dish out some compliments to others. After all, compliments are free 😉
Stop punishing yourself. That little number at your feet is the source of so much negativity so why are you still stepping on the scale? Save yourself the emotional distress and reward yourself for the positive lifestyle changes you have made. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you slip up. Everyone has their vice (mine is dessert).
Set goals that are not weight driven. If you set a goal to lose weight, but you don’t meet that goal, are you upset? Instead of weight driven goals, try assessing how your clothes fit, the strength you have gained, or your ability to run a mile when you could barely make the block before.
I realize I am thin, but I too feel self conscious about how I look. Skinny shaming is a thing, so leave your “eat a cheeseburger” comments at home. I wrote this post to remind women (and men) they are worth more than the number they see and if they have weight loss goals to track them through methods beyond the bathroom scale!
Until next post…xoxo Becca
A month ago I came across an article on Facebook called You Can Write Your Way Out of an Emotional Funk. Here’s How. by Dr. Susan David (an excerpt from her book, Emotional Agility). I thought it was an interesting article. How many times have you found yourself in a “funk” and not feeling like yourself? It happens to the best of us! The article got me thinking, people used to write in diaries or journal. Now a lot of society is too busy worrying about how they look on social media than about their emotional well being. The writing we do on a daily basis probably consists of emails, texts, social media status/photo captions, a few research projects, proposals, etc. None of that focuses on yourself or emotions.
The article explains the results of studies conducted by James Pennebaker, a professor at the University of Texas.
“In each study, Pennebaker found that the people who wrote about emotionally charged episodes experienced marked improvement in their physical and mental well-being. They were happier, less depressed and less anxious. In the months after the writing sessions, they had lower blood pressure, improved immune function, and fewer visits to the doctor. They also reported better relationships, improved memory, and more success at work.”
In a way, this blog has served as a outlet for me to share. Though I don’t write much about personal things or struggles I face, the writing process allows me to be creative. After my dad died in 2011 I found it was extremely difficult to share my thoughts and emotions. I was used to putting on a brave face and bottling up all emotions. There wasn’t anyone at that time in my life to fully comprehend my feelings so I would often compose emails to myself, essentially journaling how I felt, what I was thinking, the emotions I faced after losing him. It made it a little easier to face.
Now, when I face things like sadness or stress I write about it. It helps me, why not give it a try?
Until next post…xoxo Becca
p.s. If you experience a lot of stress, watch Kelly McGonigal’s TED Talk How to make stress your friend.