I used to control myself by losing weight.
This started in high school (14 years old) when I modeled and was told I was too fat or too much weight on my hips, not enough jawline, not enough…the list went on and on.
So at the age 15, I learned to punish myself to get perfection.
I ate half a bagel or 8 saltine crackers per day along with 8 ounces of water. I ran on a treadmill for an hour or so in a water losing suit. I sat in the sauna to lose more weight.
I would eat meals and throw them up if I felt fat.
I hid all of this from everyone and made jokes about people that did what I was doing to myself.
This went on until I went to college where I went the other way and gained weight to prove that I was normal.
I ate what I wanted and drank even more.
This mindset continued in NYC until I would have breakdowns or feel bad about myself. Then I would get really skinny to feel better. To prove that I could still be a model. That I had something to offer.
I would punish myself to feel better. But at least I had some form of control. Because I was not living my truth and was striving to please others, I took it out on myself (my body).
Living in Bali, healing myself from traumas and emotional baggage and finding myself again, I did the same thing.
I couldn’t control my business or my demanding coach, so I was punishing my body with rigid demands, fasting, and 2 hour daily yoga.
I didn’t realize how far I was pushing myself until I came back from Bali and my mom said, “You are so skinny, it looks bad.”
And I thought, “What did I do to myself?”
I had returned to a cycle that I was comfortable with because I was used to pain and control.
From that point on, I made it a daily habit to tell my body how much I love it, how awesome it is and how grateful I am for all of the journeys we’ve been on together and that we will go on.
I did a gentler yoga when my body needed it. I spent more time walking in nature.
And my body naturally started to blossom. To glow. To give me more booty and bigger breasts. To be and look healthy.
Not to look starved and deprived of nutrients.
I used to gloss over this part of my life. Gloss over the punishment I doled out to myself.
We are trained to see all of our flaws. We look in the mirror and hate ourselves.
In modeling, that is even more pronounced because of the intense scrutiny.
So we must un-train our minds on how we see ourselves, our bodies and our souls.
We must re-train our minds to be grateful that we have our bodies, that we can walk or exercise, that we are healthy and alive, that we are human and we love our bodies.
Because loving your body is loving yourself.
I challenge you to love your body today. All day today when you have a chance – tell it how grateful you are for it and the miracle that it is.
See how you feel. See if your mindset changes once you start to love on your body.