I’ve been thinking a lot recently how much power the scale holds over me. I don’t want to make a generalization, but it seems to be this way for most woman, no matter what age, size, race, etc.
The only way I can think of describing the feeling is in a metaphor. Weight and that unreachable number (I know I have one) is like a hovering dark cloud that just sits above our heads patiently waiting to storm.
One minute the outlook of life is sunny, we’re playing outside, enjoying ourselves. Then, we make the decision to step on the scale which will determine the day’s weather. If it’s a gain – the dark cloud breaks into thunder, lightning, and darkness. You instantaneously become judgmental, criticize yourself, and blame yourself for the rest of the day (if not longer).
If the number is down, we’re singing from the rooftops on a perfectly sunny summer day – which is unrealistic in itself. Suddenly, I’ve made it, I did such a GOOD job, I’m WORTHY of everything that doesn’t even relate to weight: happiness, love, success. How crazy is it that something as small as a single pound can shift our moods and our opinion of ourselves so dramatically.
Too many of us rely on the scale to determine how we feel about ourselves. However, I have some recommendations of how to end this damaging relationship:
- First comes first, take a break from the scale. This was huge for me. I didn’t use the scale for probably 2 years in recovery. I wore the same clothes week in and week out and they fit exactly the same, and that made me feel content.
- I made sure to take time to appreciate my body. I moisturize my body with scented body lotion, stretch, look at myself in the mirror and repeat nice things to myself (even if I don’t fully believe them)
- I focus on what my body can do, and feel recognize that I am grateful I can move without pain or discomfort.
After months of work, I have come to terms with the scale being a tool to help me gauge where I am, but not dictate how I feel about myself. I try to focus on non-scale victories and indicators of health that provide truth and measurable successes rather than just measuring my relationship to earth’s gravity that can change depending on how much water I have that day.
So I hope you come join me in changing our perception of the scale and crushing our goals!
Image 2011 Kristina Laurendi Havens Leonid Afremov