“I love my body,” part 3 of 4

My heart got broken earlier this year–-but that very same heart kept on beating. It pumps blood every second, to my brain, to every extremity, perfectly. Every minute of the past 43 years. When I sleep, my heart miraculously never skips a pulse. I should be on my knees thanking God every day for my beautiful body.

“My body serves me well.”

In a thousand ways. I am going to record a meditation CD about this, to go along with 12 Steps to Whole Foods, in 2011. (Keep my feet to the fire about this! I have a lot of plans for 2011!) At the end of the meditation I am working on, I want you to feel awed by your gorgeous body. (Which then will translate into your making good choices to treat it with respect.)

Tell yourself, “I love my body. It serves me well” every day. Repetition is key. (Thus the need for the meditation I’m working on.) If you think what I’m telling you here is ridiculous, that’s okay. Just do it anyway.

Since you’re a woman, I’m not going to bother trying to get you to talk like a man. (My 17-y.o. son said last week:

“I poned that basketball today!”

and

“I was DOPE at practice, Mom–I’m maxing the bench press!”

I don’t know how you pone something or what exactly dope has to do with the bench press. But male culture allows, even demands, macho bravado–and confidence. Ours doesn’t.)

In all reality, if you’re a woman, I’m not going to get you to talk about yourself this way. You didn’t create the system for girls–you just operate in it. I get that.

But there are ways you CAN love your body that are socially acceptable. Will you commit to saying this:

“I love my body. It serves me well.” Or something LIKE that, every day several times, when you catch yourself thinking negatively about yourself? Say it a thousand times, until you believe it. (It took me a long time before I believed it.) Then say it, still, to reinforce that knowledge.

I think you are beautiful. I don’t care that you have stretch marks or your breasts sag or whatever. When you show up in my class or on my blog, I know you are a seeker of truth. You’re a goddess with unlimited potential. You are many things to many people who love you. You are good at your core and have a divine source, which endows you with divinity. You aren’t perfect, but your imperfection makes you relateable. I hope you believe that, let it sink deep until you begin to tap your potential.

As you do, you will find yourself refusing to engage in behaviors that abuse your beautiful body.

And if you eat something that makes you feel ill rather than well, choose not to guilt-trip yourself. One of my grad-school professors used to repeat often, “Guilt is a useless emotion.”

I agree. Do you love your body more when you pound on yourself about every less-than-optimal choice? Just because you ate those frosted sugar cookies today doesn’t mean you’re a bad person or that you can’t make good choices tomorrow. It means you’re human.

(I teach my kids: “Sin is not a tragedy.” It’s inevitable and it’s how we grow.)

During this holiday season, there are so many opportunities to abuse our bodies. So please start now in nurturing self-talk and spend some time meditating on how blessed you are to inhabit your own skin.

This really can translate into a strong desire to honor your body that transcends addiction and self-medication.

17 thoughts on ““I love my body,” part 3 of 4

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  1. Thank you for these posts. I say that I am thankful for my healthy body but I really don’t believe it. I guess I’ll need to start really believing it.

  2. Oh yah! We have the “powned” the “beast” the “fail” going on at my house. “That was such a fail, that guy just got powned.”

    Powned by the way is a fusion word. It means pounded and owned fused together. 🙂 Ha!

    Dara

  3. I am looking forward to the CD also. I commented on the other part of this post and just found this one.

    You are inspired on the subject of being kind to our bodies. Love is what changes anything, not hate, or self hate. It just doesn’t work like that.

    Thank you for all the wonderful goodness you do in this world.

    I just lost my mother to cancer last month. Eating right can be a wonderful thing to stop cancer.

    Thanks again,

    Chris P.

  4. Hey Robyn,

    In your e-mail, you asked for some men to chime in on this post…

    Women should be happy to have stretch marks. When my children’s mother and I were together, I would often comment favorably about hers. I considered them a thing of beauty. It was these “imperfections” that made things perfect. Just think, to possess stretch marks is to have a continual visible sign or reminder that one has participated in bringing new life into the world!

    And now that I think of it while making this post, I actually wonder if technology I’ve been recently learning about would have an application to eliminate stretch marks on a woman. Hmm. Hmm. Hmm. You’ve gotten me thinking!

    Thank you!

    Kennon Fort

  5. Robyn,

    Thank you for your inspiring words of encouragement. After all, . . . if we don’t take care of our bodies, where will we live?

    Salud,

    Suzanne

  6. Hi Robyn,

    Thank you for this series of articles about loving our bodies. It has been a lifelong practice for me to learn and believe that my body is beautiful and amazing rather than full of flaws. Still, to this day, we are surrounded by messages to the contrary in the media and in the reflections we get from others. Time for all of us, but women especially, to change our habits and look in our own mirrors and be our own champions–and take our own journeys to find out what truly nourishes us, food and beyond.

    I still find myself repeating old habits of self-abuse against my body periodically. Though I generally eat healthy foods, there’s still a frontier for me of getting some comfort from food beyond what it naturally imparts. Thank you for the reminders that loving my body is always a great place to start and return to again and again as I go through this process.

    Happy Holidays and New Year to you! Thanks again,

    Kathryn

  7. I think a meditation cd would be awesome, but have you heard about dichotics. It is an awesome way to do a mediation cd. It adds another dimention.

  8. I love how you connected loving your body to making good choices. You made me think…I really do love my body because it really does serve me well. Thanks!

    Quinn

  9. Keep up the great work Robyn and readers.

    Our bodies have that sense of eternal running them.

    To quote someone else “Our bodies are the source of all creativity and initiative”. and someone else ” A body in motion tends to stay in motion unless some external outside force acts upon it.” This also applies to our human bodies. “be a good animal”. and many more quotes come to mind here.

    I am a student of the late running guru Dr. George Sheehan. One of his books that deals with this stuff was/ is : Running and Being the total Experience.

    I am not presently a runner but I love green smoothies!

    Richard in Omaha

    Happy New Year Everyone.

  10. You mentioned that when traveling to Africa, you were using the Enerhealth Meal Replacement. You said that it was very “Palatable”. Can anyone expand on the taste of this? Is it palatable as in “i can get it down” or does it actually taste o.k? Do you think it’s only palatable for those who have already been eating whole foods a lot? What are the best things that you can mix it with for better flavor? Does it need to always be a fruit juice or could it possibly go with some dark chocolate almond milk or something? (or would that make it taste too funny?).

    I don’t know if there was a better placer to post this -if there was, I didn’t see it as I don’t have a lot of time.

    1. Brandi, it tastes better than “I can get it down,” it tastes okay, yes–it tastes NOT as good as, um, orange juice, or ice cream, or whatever you might just LOVE. But consider the ingredient list. Dark chocolate almond milk? Sure, mix it with that, good idea!

  11. I’m only a month late finding time to read this- (had a baby 6 weeks ago 🙂 — but THANK YOU!!! I really needed this. I’d say I’ve been very good at loving my body up until the last couple weeks. I commited myself to eat healthy while nursing and did perfect over the holidays and have been doing great–HOWEVER just like the last 2 times/kids I have still gained weight nursing and I’m having a really hard time with this!!! (I don’t like feeling like I dont’ have any control over it!) and I’m starting to feel depressed about it. I need to keep reminding myself that that is not the only reason I eat healthy and exercise and even if I continue to gain weight for whatever reason I should still keep on eating healthy and exercising because I want ot be healthy as well.

    I do love my body–it serves me well. it is feeding my daughter–how amazing is that?!!

    a class I took in college had us look in the mirror and say I love you and other nice things about ourselves…I hated it and it didn’t seem to work. the phrases were “too much” like you are perfect or beautiful, etc,etc.

    “I love my body- it serves me well” is PERFECT!! I am grateful that it works and gets me around–I like that saying and so can do it in the mirror!

  12. So how do I love my body when my boyfriend brings up (trying to be thoughtful…he’s a health science professor) now and again that I need to lose weight (I’m 5’9″ at 190 lbs and was around 240-250 when we met), but yet he will still tell me how beautiful I am?

    1. Rebecca…..maybe both are true? You’re definitely beautiful….but maybe he is talking about your health? Of course, if you don’t like him telling you that, you can ask him not to?

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