Something that reinforces my negative body image is the loop of negative memories I hold onto. They’re always on standby for any moment that might trigger self-loathing. When that happens, my brain – on auto-pilot – hits “play”; and once that loop gets going, the pause button is hard to access. I am my own worst enemy.
Compounding that is the fact that, as a dancer, I spent my most formative years having my weight and body type scrutinized and criticized. And that bled into my professional dance career. So there’s this underlying fear that people are judging my skills and talent based on my size, weight, & overall appearance. The rational side of me knows that, yes, that’s absolutely true! But, the people I actually want in my life – from friends to colleagues and Pilates students – know that my worth isn’t measured by the scale.
Nevertheless, what’s still disappointing to me is this misguided perception that a specific body type is indicative of expertise and effectiveness as a fitness professional. I scroll the ‘gram and see “aspirational-looking” fitness influencers who know absolutely nothing about fitness. And yet they somehow gain people’s trust, simply based on their appearance. They are today’s fitness gurus who lead the chase after aesthetic goals versus optimal mobility and health, longevity, and feeling absolutely amazeballs in your body. So that sometimes gets in my head and makes me think that, in order to be taken seriously, I’ve gotta whittle away the pounds and get my “dancer’s body” back.
S.I.T. With Yourself in April
This month’s #soakedinthought journaling prompts are dedicated to body confidence and fitness as a lifestyle. As we move into Spring and the fitness industry ramps up its messaging about getting “in shape” for Summer, I hope you’ll sit with yourself to figure out what your body, mind, and spirit need to feel healthy, fit, and happy – without all the external voices.