One thing we hear a lot about this time of year is how to get back in shape for swimsuit season.
Diets, exercise, pills, weird experiments to trick our body into slimming down.
We wage war on our body to get it to look the way we think it should look in order to get what we want, whether it’s the hottie across the street, better job opportunities, our partner’s attention (or sometimes revenge on an ex), or just feeling better about ourselves when we look in the mirror.
We get into a cycle of restriction and control. Don’t eat this, don’t do that, say this thing not that, discipline, discipline, discipline.
This is what will get us there (whatever ‘there’ is, which seems to be some imaginary magical land where the skinny happy forever partying people without problems seem to live).
The thing is… There is no there there.
It doesn’t exist, yet we continually fight ourselves and our bodies to reach it.
I’m not saying there isn’t room for restraint, discipline and effort in this world.
But there is a difference between having these things out of commitment and pleasure instead of out our of ideas of how we should be in order to get the love, appreciation, and power we crave.
What would it be like if we started to listen to our desires, and acted from that place?
This morning, my body was very clear about its need to exercise before I got started with work.
So I took it to the gym.
Guess what? That means I get to be a lot more productive and focused because my body is happy.
When it’s hungry, I ask it what it really wants to eat. What would be the most nourishing thing for it?
But we rarely bother to pay attention to it because we have it that it’s against us, it doesn’t do what we want it to do.
Have you ever thought that perhaps you are not doing it justice either?
What would it be like if we struck a cease-fire and started peace talks with each other?
In my experience, the results of listening to and trusting the wisdom in my body have been
- A lot more pleasure, not just physical but actually enjoying myself, what I’m doing and where I am
- More productivity
- A healthier attitude towards food
- Actually craving exercise and movement
- No more emotional eating
- and, of course, this all results on actually shedding pounds.
The best way to get in shape for swimsuit season is actually to enjoy ourselves in exploring what makes our bodies happy. Regardless of whether weight drops or not, we will feel so much juicier about ourselves and life that it won’t matter:
The love, appreciation and power that we seek will be there anyway because it comes from ourselves.