Weight Loss Support - Loving yourself




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proudmommy09
05-14-2010, 01:27 AM
I suffer from self esteem issues and Im just wondering how do you love yourself? I feel that I cant be loved because of my weight problem. I know that sounds crazy but I believe that. So how does one start on the road to accepting themselves and loving themselves. Thank you


Jennifer 3FC
05-14-2010, 01:58 AM
I completely understand how you feel. :hug: I think we've all been there! Your weight is not a reflection on what kind of person you are. I see two happy healthy kids in your avatar, and a mom that loves them very much! Unconditional love, just like it should be for yourself, and everybody else. Love yourself for being a good mom, for trying to be healthy, for having your heart in the right place as you find your path to weight loss. There is so much more about you, and what is inside, than the shell that everybody else sees. :hug:

Wannabeskinny
05-14-2010, 09:27 AM
Loving yourself is a skill you have to work on. We have all struggled with this issue thinking that nobody can truly love us because of our weight when the issue is we can't forgive ourselves for our weight.

After months of therapy I started to realize that I gained weight as an act of love towards myself. I was stuck in a difficult situation as a kid, one that I couldn't cope with and the only thing I could do was try to comfort myself with food. I did it to protect myself and that is self-love, although very immature and ultimately not effective. I'm willing to bet that many of us here learned to comfort ourselves with food when nobody was stepping up to the plate to comfort us as children. Look at how strong and great that is! Accept that as an act of self-love!

But now that I've realized that this tactic doesn't work for me anymore I've had to relearn how to love myself without feeding myself. It's really hard and it's my biggest struggle.

One tangible thing I do is I use the time that I exercise as "positive mental time." When I'm walking or jogging i don't allow my mind to wander to random things like chores or what I have to do later. Instead I focus on my physical activity and then praise myself constantly. Typical thoughts that are going on my head are:

"Gee I love the feeling of this!"
"Look at what my body can do!"
"I am super strong and beautiful"
"My looks are awesome!"
"I can do it I can do it!"
"At this rate I'll be a size 10 in no time!"
"I am so proud of myself for being out here exercising while so many people are sleeping in."

The dialogue goes on and on and I really consider it just as important as the exercise itself. Trust me, when you spend so much time hating yourself and calling yourself fat and ugly at all times of the day, you start to realize that you're the one who has relegated yourself to feeling negatively and there's only one way to change that: battle it with positive reinforcement.
Hope this helps.


ThicknPretty
05-14-2010, 10:39 AM
First of all, you aren’t alone. Not trying to minimize your feelings, but many people who struggle with weight also struggle with feeling “unlovable” and have tragic self esteem. I’m one of them!

As far as being “unlovable”, I say this: flip it around. Have you ever not been able to love someone else in your life because of their weight or body? I’d guess probably not. For some reason, it’s easy to assume that people won’t love or like us because of our weight even though we ourselves are pretty accepting. In my relationship, for instance, I am much heavier than my boyfriend. And I often find myself wondering why the heck he would want to be with someone like me? Well, the same reasons I want to be with him in spite of some of his physical flaws…he’s funny and smart and we have chemistry and I can trust him, etc, etc. He doesn’t look at me the same way I do…like a big collection of flaws and things that need to be fixed asap. He looks at me and actually sees GOOD things. And people look at you and see the same!

Have you tried affirmations? I’ve heard that they help a lot of people…just saying positive things about yourself to yourself and acting like you believe it.

Good luck hon.

paris81
05-14-2010, 11:28 AM
As far as being “unlovable”, I say this: flip it around. Have you ever not been able to love someone else in your life because of their weight or body? I’d guess probably not. For some reason, it’s easy to assume that people won’t love or like us because of our weight even though we ourselves are pretty accepting.

Whoa! This is earth-shattering! What a way to think about it, I've NEVER thought of it this way. I always feel that my friends and family don't like me or love me because of my weight--but I would never feel that way about one of them!

Thanks for the amazing insight!

Beach Patrol
05-14-2010, 12:30 PM
Awwww! I feel your pain!!! :hug:

It helps me to remember that BODY IMAGE and SELF IMAGE are two different things. I AM NOT MY WEIGHT. I am so much more than 5'3 1/2" and 175 pounds! I am funny, energetic, cute, fairly smart, pretty good fashion sense, have a damn good life with my husband of 17 years and I enjoy my work and my family & friends - what could be better?

Of course, when I look in the mirror, or squeeze into those size 14's I've been wearing, I have the occasional melt down or pitch a little temper tantrum. WHY has my body turned on me? I used to be so thin, so fit, blahblahblah. Well, for one thing, I'm not 20 years old anymore (almost 47) and for another thing, even tho I am active, I am no where NEAR as active as what I was when I was younger. I'm going thru perimenopause! Eek! -Good googly moogly I have some mood swings from **** & some "eating accidents" also from ****.

I have some aches and pains due to age - makes it hard to motivate myself to move sometimes! - and some pains due to oopsy-daisy moments (such as tripping over the dog & falling face first into the tub, you know! stuff like that!) so I might not exercise every single day like I want to.

While I don't necessarily look in the mirror and jump for joy (who wants to see all that fat jiggling about? no sir! no jumping for Beach Patrol! LOL) but I certainly don't HATE my body. It has carried me thru 46+ years of all sorts of adventures. It's survived a motorcycle wreck, three car accidents, several surgeries, a couple of life-threatening illnesses, and It deserves my respect!!! And when I try to eat better and exercise more, I AM RESPECTING MY BODY. It doesn't lose weight as quickly as when I was young...or as quickly as I would like, and sometimes I plateau for weeks! - but I have decided TO GIVE MYSELF A FREAK'N BREAK about it.

I'm not perfect. But I am perfectly me, with or without the extra 40 pounds. And yeah, I love me. If I didn't, I wouldn't even TRY to lose the weight. :^:

:hug: :hug: :hug:

Gold32
05-14-2010, 01:20 PM
I AM NOT MY WEIGHT.

A-:censored:-men.

My thoughts, feelings, emotions, my personality, have nothing to do with my weight. And I won't let them.

I think a big part of loving myself is that I don't give a flying donkey's behind what other people think. Okay, I'm human, I do a little. But I'm not going to let what others think of me influence what I think of me. I know my family and closest friends love me for me, that's all that matters.

I realize my post has been fairly centered on what others think. Yes, the issue of "loving yourself" is not a simple one. It's all on where you are coming from. Even you switched between, "can not be loved" (someone else giving it) to "love myself" in one sentence, indicating they are twined for you. So let me just point out that clearly, given your name and avatar, you are loved. Sometimes we have to confront our sillyness heads on to truly realize how silly it is. Try telling your kids that they don't really love you. Uh huh. People love you. Time to love yourself.

A lot of us spend way too much time dwelling on negative things. For example, I was worrying and stressing out about the future, while forgetting that I have plenty to be thankful for now. Try focusing on the positive things, the things you like about yourself, no matter how small or how silly you feel.

Some times you just have to say, dang it, why not love myself a bit more? I'm awesome!

Nada
05-14-2010, 04:52 PM
Love is action. Do what is best for your body--feed it healthy, natural foods, get it moving in ways that will strengthen it. Don't worry about how you "feel" about your looks and you may find you're soon feeling better about yourself.

CJZee
05-14-2010, 05:00 PM
Look at yourself in a mirror and say outloud, "I love you." It's very simple and powerful. Do it every day. Then start to believe it.

Maddie89
05-14-2010, 08:17 PM
This is something I have really struggled with my entire life. I have never felt loveable and I felt that any man I got near would never like me because of my weight. It is only really quite recently that I have started to accept myself. As I am. While yes that does include my weight it doesn't mean that I can't work on it to make myself happier. It's about you not about anyone else.
One thing I tell myself whenever I start to get those feeling is "your weight does not DEFINE who you are". It is just a part of your appearance like your nose or your hair is! Even if there was no excess weight you'd still be the person you are and that is what matters.
Try telling yourself positive things about yourself. If you start to think negatively about yourself make a huge effort to stop yourself and contradict what you are trying to say to yourself.
For example if you start to tell yourself "I am fat and worthless and no body loves me" tell yourself "I may be overweight but I am working everyday to change that and I am certainly not worthless and I am loved by many" Even if you don't believe it...just do it anyway. Eventually you will catch up with yourself and believe it!
I'm not saying it is necesarrily like this for you but I speak from personal experience.

I hope you feel better and do know that you are not alone:hug:

ninepaw
05-14-2010, 08:27 PM
Self esteem is probably one of the biggest issues I have had to this point of my life, and it's something that I have learned to have, even when my weight is high like it is now.

Don't get me wrong - I am still self conscious about my weight, which I can only really fix by continuing to lose more and bask in the glory of the changes I make, but I still have self esteem in other ways. I believe I have a wonderful personality. I believe I am, most of the time, a fun person to be around. I think I am actually a beautiful girl, just a bit heavy for the moment.

It's all about focusing on the good things, and working to fix what you precieve to be bad, all while constantly reminding yourself that you deserve all sorts of good and wonderful things. :)

At least that's what I believe. ;)

astrophe
05-15-2010, 01:14 AM
I suffer from self esteem issues and I'm just wondering how do you love yourself?

I treat myself with respect, kindness and like I am valuable to me. I do not talk down about myself or others.

I do not hang out with people who are disrespectful, rude, have unhealthy boundaries, are mean, etc. Or the more subtle emotional vampires who may not be obvious about it but still suck you dry.

I try to meet my emotional, physical, mental, social, spiritual and character building needs. For a long time I only dealt with emotional and mental. I neglected spiritual and physical. Took social and character building for granted. I feel like I'm more integrated as a whole person and more balanced and at peace when I try to give each of these areas some attention instead of only going with my favs or what's easiest.

I feel that I cant be loved because of my weight problem. I know that sounds crazy but I believe that. So how does one start on the road to accepting themselves and loving themselves.

Do you think you can change this belief that you cannot be loved because of your weight? I think you'd have to start there. Figure out what your square one is and work on the why you think you are unloveable inside.

I don't think it is your weight. "Weight problem" is what you picked to focus on because you are not happy about it right now. But not being happy with your weight (external outside physical thing) is not the same thing as not being happy within yourself. (internal, inside emotional/mental thing.)

You could lose a zillion or gain a zillion, but if the bottom line is that you THINK (mental) or FEEL (emotional) you are not worth loving, then what you look like doesn't matter.It's not what the outer package is. You have to address the inside with inside type tools.

If not ready to care for your inner self just yet, try just caring for your outer self first. (get some sun, eat nutritiously, practice good sleep habits, etc.) That can start building a little self-care and self esteem from that. Just being neat, clean, and dressed appropriately isn't going to solve all esteem issues, but won't hurt and might give you the little boost to get on to the rest.

But get around to the inner business. Don't put it off forever.

Start addressing the inner emotional/mental stuff. Do you have good relationships with other people? Why or why not? Do you need to check your boundaries? Do you have enough? positive people around you? Too many emotional vampires bringing you down? Do you do anything that is esteem building? Do you engage in anything that is esteem eroding?

Who loves you? Do you allow them to? Do you express it back well? Do you allow yourself to be vulnerable to the emotions connected to loving and being loved -- both the ups and downs?

(I mean all types -- romantic love/caring, family love/caring and friend love/caring.)

GL!
A.

Wannabeskinny
05-15-2010, 09:11 AM
I have to disagree somewhat with the idea that "my weight does not define me" because it's a big part of who I am. My weight is a culmination of my genetics, my eating habits, my physical activity habits, and my emotional connection with food. For someone who has an eating disorder then it's a gray area to distiguish myself from my weight. I know that technically I'm more than just my weight, (I'm well educated, I have a great job, I have lots of talents, I have a wonderful husband and family, etc) but it seems like my weight and my relationship with food are always amiss. I think about it constantly and most of the time it feels like my weight DOES define me.

Beach Patrol
05-15-2010, 09:49 AM
I have to disagree somewhat with the idea that "my weight does not define me" because it's a big part of who I am. My weight is a culmination of my genetics, my eating habits, my physical activity habits, and my emotional connection with food. For someone who has an eating disorder then it's a gray area to distiguish myself from my weight. I know that technically I'm more than just my weight, (I'm well educated, I have a great job, I have lots of talents, I have a wonderful husband and family, etc) but it seems like my weight and my relationship with food are always amiss. I think about it constantly and most of the time it feels like my weight DOES define me.

May I weigh in here (forgive the pun!)

Your weight does NOT define YOU.

WHO YOU ARE is very different from WHAT YOU DO, very different from WHAT YOU LOOK LIKE, and even changes as time marches on.

For instance, when someone asks "What do you do?" we all assume they're asking about our job... "what do you do for a living?" is the question. So we respond "I'm a scientist" or "I'm a communications specialist" or whatever.

I AM NOT A SECRETARY. A secretary JOB is WHAT I DO for a living, but it's not WHO I AM. For eight hours a day, 5 days a week, I go to work & do a job but it doesn't make me who I am. Just as my weight, or my eating habits or any of those things make me who I am. What I'm saying here is that If I were skinny - I'd still be me. I'd still have the same sense of humor, I'd still cry at the same silly commercials, I'd still love animals & enjoy reading and strolling on the beach with my husband. I'd still call my mom every other Sunday and I'd still go to work 5 days a week for 8 hours a day.

This is why I say I AM NOT MY WEIGHT - MY WEIGHT DOES NOT DEFINE WHO I AM. ;)

paris81
05-15-2010, 11:05 AM
I wonder if it's more about letting your weight define you, as opposed to not allowing it to define you.

Sometimes, I do allow my weight to define me, but those are really rare moments where I feel gross and depressed. When I'm living my life, normally, day to day, my weight doesn't define me because I'm allowing myself to be defined by other things (my job, my friends, my city, my experiances).

proudmommy09
05-16-2010, 11:18 PM
thanks everybody for all the wonderful advice and insights.......good stuff

caliyah
05-17-2010, 02:25 AM
I think so many of us don't realize just how beautiful we are because we have been so scarred by how society tells us only skinny people are beautiful. Find that voice within to tell yourself that you are beautiful!

Recognize you are beautiful! You are blessed! Love yourself first.

caliyah
05-17-2010, 02:37 AM
by the way one more thing 2 add --- self confidence can take u such a long way. i have so many friends who exude confidence, self love and a positive attitude regardless of their weight whether its 300 lbs or 350 or 200 and they have never had a problem finding a good guy. and they definitely make a lot of skinny girls jealous lol