Before I talk about the power of accepting your body right now, I want to tell you what I mean by ‘acceptance.’ I DON’T mean that you should say, “I should just accept that this is the way I am and not bother to change anything.” Instead, what I mean is that we should say, “This is where I am at right now, in this moment.” That means being honest about where we are, and accepting that we got here.
Accept – then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.
Eckhart Tolle, spiritual teacher and author of The Power of NOW
Stop spending time and energy resisting what already is.
To be honest about where you are, maybe you need to step onto a scale and take a good look at yourself in the mirror naked. If we were talking about money I’d tell you to open your bank statements and go through them. If we were talking about a disorganized home I’d ask you to look around your home with the eyes of a stranger. Essentially we want to pull our heads out of the sand and be really honest with ourselves. When you do that, notice any emotions that come up. Don’t hang onto them or dwell on them (what good is that?) but rather notice them and let them pass, like waves on the sand. This is the beginning of, and the path towards, acceptance.
As you look at yourself in the mirror, not fixating on any single part, but rather taking in the full picture, see if you can feel compassion towards that body of yours. Maybe you think or say harsh things about it, maybe you judge it harshly, maybe you abuse it or treat it badly by not giving it enough rest, water, nourishment, exercise, and love. Yet it is doing the best it can to protect you. Think of the adventures and pleasures in life your body has allowed you to experience and feel. Think of all the places it brought you, and where you still want it to take you. Think of the lessons it has taught you. Make a promise to your body to cherish it as the vessel through which you will navigate life with all its joys and challenges. Write it down. Dear body of mine….
Only through accepting your body right now can you move forward and create lasting changes.
If you work from a place of honesty, acceptance, and self-love, you will create positive lasting changes! Why? Because:
- When you act out of non-acceptance, you might desire the results, but only through acceptance and self-love will you desire the actions that will get you those results. Think of the difference between eating healthy foods and exercising out of anger or judgement, and doing those things out of self-love.
- If you try to heal your body from a place of judgement and nonacceptance, you are relying on willpower alone to get you there, and willpower alone will always fail.
- Instead of diet and exercise being something you do to yourself, they are something you do for yourself. Habits and therefore changes will be maintainable.
- You will already be in the mindset of the person you want to become! If you want to be happy with your body, managing your weight and increasing your fitness are just tools to get you there. But guess what? If you accept your body right now, you are already partially there!
Finally, acceptance lets you let go of the stress around your body image. This alone will help your body heal faster. Relax and know you are on the way to a healthier you!
Where have you practiced acceptance in your life? How has it helped you?