I am working hard to embrace a new wellness journey that focuses on my mental and physical health and is less about the number on the scale. I want to be healthier, stronger, calmer and happier. To some people, this may sound easy, but I have realized over the past few years, it is not. It’s about shifting my mindset to embrace my journey, however long it may take, instead of always racing to the finish line.
There are a few things that I plan on doing to help me shift my mindset, and I thought it might be helpful to share them with you.
Screw the scale
I’m Cara, and I have an unhealthy relationship with the scale. I weigh myself every morning, and I often feel bad when I see the number go up. In fact, most of my adult life, I have spent so much time trying to lose weight to achieve the number that I want to see on the scale. I realize now how unhealthy that is for me. I don’t want my happiness to be based on the number. I don’t think that your physical health is based on the number of the scale, there are a lot of unhealthy people who way much less than me. But, from the outside looking in, people think they are healthy. So, on my journey, I am focusing on the way I feel! I want to be strong with high endurance to keep up with my husband and daughter. I will continue to work out 5-6 days per week because it makes me happy! But, I don’t care what the scale says anymore. I just want to feel good inside and out.
Inspiration, not envy
I follow many women on social media from all walks of life. But, I think that we all need to be careful to not fall into the trap of becoming envious of the women/people that we follow. It’s important to remember that people often only share the good parts of their lives on social media and there is nothing wrong with that. But, as a society, we have adopted a culture where everyone wants to be like or look like someone else. So, I think it is so important to stop being envious of what we don’t have. Just because a person may look a certain way or have a particular lifestyle doesn’t mean they are happy. So, I remind myself that the women I follow are there to motivate me to embrace my own journey and not because I want to have their journey.
Food is fuel for the soul
Every time I lose a significant amount of weight, it involves me cutting out things like sugar, starch, etc. But, once I lost the weight, I would keep it off for a bit and then I would re-introduce the foods that I cut out and slowly but surely the weight that I lost would pile right back on. At the beginning of this year, I went vegan (you can read about that here). But, I didn’t do it to lose weight, because any vegan person knows it’s quite easy to be an unhealthy vegan. Instead, I did it because I noticed that meat products didn’t digest well for me. So, I made the change. But, aside from going vegan, I still eat sugar and carbs, etc. But, I have done a better job of balancing my ‘treats” with healthy foods. If I want something, I eat it. I have spent too much of my life restricting myself, and I don’t want to do that anymore. I genuinely believe it is about balance. I balance the good with the bad, and some days are better than others, but I am okay with that, and you should be too! We shouldn’t feel guilty after eating something we love, just balance your week and be happy!
One of the things I started at the beginning of Covid-19 was to clear my head through meditation. It allows me to release the tension in my body every morning and start each day with a fresh perspective. I think this element is so crucial to my mental health. It’s five minutes every morning where I set my intentions for the day and that I take for ME! Now, I won’t lie; it took me a minute to get into a good routine and flow, and my mind still wanders sometimes. But, for the most part, I can focus and relax for those 5 minutes.
I think affirmations are such a positive way to remind ourselves how amazing we are every day. I recently bought a package of chalkboard markers and have been writing affirmations on mine and my daughter’s bathroom mirrors every day to remind us of how awesome we indeed are. It’s something that helps to reinforce my positive mindset every single day.
I am excited to embrace my journey with no timeline, it’s my journey and I think it will always be a work in progress. I am not striving for perfection! I just want to be happy and healthy for ME!