Bodies and Our Expectations
In my latest video on the stages of change, I discussed goal-setting and making your goals valuable to yourself and your health and happiness. There seems to be an epidemic of lack of self-confidence and a surge of body negativity, and unfortunately, it seems as though no one is immune.
Whether judgments and expectations come from society at large or ourselves, to me it seems that the way to achieve body positivity is to love the bodies we have by taking care of them the best that we can. We’ve read the stories about celebrities who are and are not fitted by certain dressmakers because of their size. We’ve ingrained into our society this sense that there is some magic number that will allow us to achieve physical happiness and attractiveness.
There are certain numbers that matter, but they aren’t dress size and one could even make an argument for weight not being a number that matters. It’s true that studies show certain weight ranges tend to have better health outcomes. However, weight doesn’t inform the most important health numbers such as body fat percentage, abdominal circumference, cholesterol, blood pressure, and a whole host of other measurements taken at the doctor’s office. It is possible for two people to have the exact same health habits and still weigh and look differently from each other as well as have significant differences in all of those other numbers we mentioned. It is also possible for two people to weigh the same and look different.
So…what can we take from this? Let’s take away the fact that we are not a number, we are not anyone but ourselves, and that every person is a different shape and size. Physical appearances are not a “one size fits all” piece of clothing and we should not subject ourselves to the expectations of other people. Love yourself, love your body, treat it well by making healthy choices and shaping healthy routines and habits, and it will show not only in how you look, but also in how strong and good you feel which is ultimately the most important measure.