Reconnecting to Your Body

Hello all,
Has it really been over a year now since the pandemic really took hold? It's hard to imagine but over that period think about how many meals, drinks, snacks...second desserts...we've all had. It's a lot...and most of us have eaten and drunk more than we need. But it's understandable...we have had to deny ourselves so much...restricting our food and drinking intake is tough. These aren't normal times.
Our blog today is authored by Natalie Borch. She is a body confidence coach and the owner of The Pink Studio that specializes in fitness and dance for adults. Here she has some excellent tips on how to think positively about our bodies and how to help us start feeling more comfortable in those bodies.
Reconnecting to Your Body When You Don’t Feel Like Yourself Anymore

In the past year our body’s have carried us through a pandemic, homeschooled our children, and rearranged our homes to make the places we sleep and eat into the places we also work and exercise.

Now, as we are emerging out of the cold months of lockdown, Summer feels close and hopeful. But what if you don’t feel hopeful? If you feel like a completely different person than you were a year ago? In a body you don’t recognize anymore.

If your body has changed in the past year, and you are feeling shame about your clothes not fitting or self-conscious about seeing friends you haven’t seen in a year because you have gained weight, you are not alone. In a survey by runreport.com that included people from 140 countries, stated that globally 35.82% of people have gained weight during the pandemic and of those that gained weight 71.25% gained more than 5lbs. In North America, the number of us who gained weight is closer to 54%.

So you are not alone. Our bodies have been in survival mode. They have been protecting us and we can show them appreciation for that, instead of disgust.

The size on your clothes is just a number, not a part of your identity. The first step to feel more comfortable in your body is to size up! Squeezing your body into clothes that no longer fit will not “motivate you to lose weight”. It will make you feel uncomfortable, filled with shame and extra aware of your body all day long.

Something I ask folks to do, as a body confidence coach, is to start practising body gratitude. This is where you thank a specific body part for what it just did for you. For example, as you reach the top of a flight of stairs saying thank-you to your thighs for getting you up those stairs. Don’t worry, you don’t have to do this out loud (although you totally can!), just quickly and silently in your head acknowledge what your thighs just did for you. I thank my belly when I sit up out of bed in the mornings.

This is a habit that focuses our attention on how much our body parts do for us and less on what they look like while doing it.

As we start to see family and friends again, resist the urge to apologize for your body. Your body is not an apology. You never have to justify the way your body looks to anyone, bur our instinct is to do just that. Instead redirect the conversation to the things you did to take care of your mental health this past year. You should be so proud of everything you have done. Remind yourself of the ways you stepped out of your comfort zone and the new things you tried this year.

And crank the tunes! Music is so healing. Make a playlist that helps you feel like your most empowered, confident self. Play music in the bathroom when you’re getting ready in the morning, play music when you’re cooking in the kitchen. Dance your way back to yourself. Two of the most simple yet effective ways to bust out of a funk and feel like yourself again are to wear clothes that fit and make you feel good, and listen to music that reminds you of who you are.

Let’s embrace ourselves and be proud of what we have done, because I think it’s pretty incredible. 

Natalie Borch is a body confidence coach, as well as the owner of Pink Studio 
Get in touch with Natalie at https://www.thepinkstudio.ca/

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