We hear a lot of negative self talk around the gym.
“If I weren’t so fat I could do that.”
“Maybe someday I won’t have a fat a$$.”
“I just need to lose X more pounds.”
Truth is, ladies, this should not be happening. We are coming to the gym in order to improve ourselves, feel better, gain strength, confidence, flexibility, endurance, or just plain functional ability. This takes effort that goes beyond just the physical exertion. It takes effort to have healthy food prepared to take to work for the week. It takes emotional support from the people surrounding us. It takes emotional strength the create and maintain change. So why, then, are we counteracting this effort with negative self talk?
It’s time for you to love yourself.
Not in a narcissistic, nonstop selfie-taking, all consuming sort of way, but in a productive, positive and constructive way. One of my favorite quotes is “It’s hard to be happy when someone is being mean to you all the time.” That means YOU. Quit being mean to yourself.
This can be incredibly hard to do. But why? Here are some ways to make it easier to love yourself:
1. Be realistic.
Let’s be honest. Perfect is not realistic. You cannot expect yourself to look like someone else, either in a magazine or in real life. Each body is different and unique. Everyone’s abilities, struggles, and strengths are different, and so their fitness/life journey will look completely different than yours (and so will their body).
2. Surround yourself with positivity.
Seek out your positive friends. Write down daily positive affirmations. Stay away from fitness magazines that make you feel bad about yourself. Don’t spend your energy on people who are negative. This is not always possible 100% of the time. But do the best you can.
3. See and Seek your strengths and passions.
What do you love? What are you really good at? What are you getting better at? Find those and spend energy on these things.
4. Appreciate your strengths and improvements.
Have you gotten stronger in a particular movement lately? Do you feel like you have more endurance than you used to? Good job! Pat yourself on the back for that. Recognize those things and acknowledge them.
5. Give yourself grace.
Accept yourself the way you are. (I know, this can be really hard.) Forgive yourself for mistakes that you make. You’ll be better for it, I promise.
6. Get in touch with you.
Take some time to spent just with yourself. Go for a walk, meditate, get a massage or pedicure. Become aware of how your body is feeling, both physically and emotionally. Becoming in touch with yourself can allow you to see negative self talk coming before it derails your day and your mood.
Try practicing one of these tips at a time and observe the changes that (hopefully) occur. Loving yourself can help you become more successful. Who doesn’t want that?
Want more tips on how to love yourself? Check out this blog post (and the video included):