Two weeks ago I went through a couple days of feeling terrible about myself. When I have these days now they are not so much a bad body day, rather they are a “bad human day”. It’s important for you to know that because I would never want to give the impression that “loving your body” means you feel good all the time.
I’m sharing this with you today because this time I wrote about it. I can’t believe I’m doing this, but I’m actually going to share my tear-soaked journal entry with you because I feel like that might be helpful (cue: vulnerability):
There are days when I wake up feeling inferior and defeated. When all I can feel is a heavy chest and lump in my throat and no matter what I do, the feeling won’t pass.
There are days when I feel like I don’t to even try or fake it. There are moments when the strongest thing I can do is let myself feel powerless to the emotions. To let them wash over me like a tidal wave. It is in these moments that I realize that I’m human with emotions.
It doesn’t matter how good I felt about myself the day before because it’s all been stripped away in an instant. A pile of inferiority and defeat.
It’s in these moments that I realized I don’t need to be fixed, rather I can accept what’s here – I’m feeling shitty today. I don’t know why, but it’s OK. That’s just the way it’s going to be.
I don’t need to fix it, work through it or pinpoint why I’m feeling this way. Sometimes it just is and the best thing I can do is accept it and know that I am OK.
This will pass and you are enough.
I read this back about a week later and was like, “damn girl, look how far you’ve come!”
Yes, I see this experience of inferiority as progress.
You see, this all could have gone down differently and probably would have in the past.
I would have felt this way and thought that I was a fraud for feeling like I’m not enough even though I preach and teach women how to feel like they are enough. I would have felt like I was “failing” at this whole self-worth thing. I would have beaten myself up for feeling inferior and double-downed on my shame. I would have gotten frustrated that all my “tools” were letting me down and I still wasn’t feeling better. I would have felt ashamed for feeling this way and bottled it up instead of admitting how I was feeling and asking for help. I would have thought that I was losing my mind and never going to feel better again.
It went down a totally different way. I look at this moment and I am so proud of what I see.
I was able to accept and let myself be in my own pile of shitty feelings. I let myself sob 5 times before 10am. I allowed myself to go into a place that felt gross and unpleasant and stay there for a while. I accepted that this is what I was feeling and it was OK. I talked about it with people I trust, asked for help and got coaching to help me through it (yes, I have a coach that helps me). I paid extra special attention to my self-care.
And by doing these things I was able to come out the other side with a new-found understanding of something in myself and an appreciation for my hot mess.
Here is what I want you to take-away from this:
A bad day doesn’t mean you “failed” at body image work. The last thing you want to do is dump all over yourself when you’re already swimming in a pile of shit.
It means you are human and thank god for that because I’m not ready for robots to take over our world.
Body acceptance includes acceptance of your whole self, including your emotions…even those ones that make you feel icky.
We need balance in our lives and seeking perfection with our emotions only hurts your ability to express who you really are—a badass woman with thoughts and feelings.
You cannot have good days without bad.
There are things we can do to support ourselves when we’re hurting, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be fixed or go away. Sometimes we just need to accept it and trust that it will get better.