By: Kaycee Wolf, Guest Blogger
I turn 32 this month, and I always get reflective around my birthday. 2015 was definitely a big year of change for me. At the end of 2014, I sat down and tried to focus on what I wanted to change for the better. I tried to focus more on positive changes instead of criticizing what I was already doing in my life. I decided to make a vision board to really clarify what my goals were going to be in 2015. I split my vision board into two parts: health and love. These were the two areas that I felt could use the most positive improvements.
Self-love was a very long and hard road for me. It was so much easier for me to tear myself down then to think positive thoughts about myself. No wonder I had such a hard time with body image; I was my biggest critic. This year, I decided that I wanted things to be different. I was so sick of this cycle of deprivation and binging. That's when I made the decision to focus on mental health as well as physical health.
My mantra for 2015 is "strong mind, strong body." And I believe it! I always thought a vision board was a lot of hooey and new-age mumbo-jumbo. Maybe it is. All I know is that the mind is a very powerful thing. Having my goals and expectations laid out in front of me was and continues to be motivating for me. My vision board hangs on my wall right beside my bed. I see it every morning when I wake up. I need that reminder.
Now here's some real talk, something that I don't really admit to people, least of all myself: I am very frightened that I am no longer going to know who I am if I'm not "the fat girl." All my life, pretty much since puberty if not before, I have been overweight. I have come to identify myself as the fat one. That's just who I am.
However, I have always had fantasies about getting skinny. I put so much faith in being thin. Everything would work out, if I was thin. I'd meet the love of my life, once I got thin. I just had to eat 500 calories a day, until I got thin. It was a VERY dangerous mental cycle for me. No wonder it never worked. When I had this mentality, I would constantly put up roadblocks to getting fit because I loathed my body and didn't truly love who I am. Once I forgave myself and stopped trying to find fault in who I was, I began to start the true journey of being my best self.
My focus is not on becoming skinny but on becoming healthy and happy. Five months in, and I'm getting there. Instead of burying my emotions in a tub of ice cream (or two), I try to tackle the hard issues and really examine why it is that I'm feeling overwhelmed or sad or unhappy. I started a weight-lifting routine and try to make healthy eating choices 85% of the time. This balance works for me.
What helps too is surrounding myself with a positive and motivating support system. It really helps to know that there are people in my corner, genuinely wanting to see me succeed. So, I want you to know that I am in your corner. We live in a hard world, especially with social media. We are bombarded with "ideal" body images that may be unrealistic for some people (like me).
I want you to know that I think you are beautiful. I have come to realize that our differences enrich this world. I know that it can get really, really hard sometimes. Just know that you are not going it alone, and you are worth it.
Let's Chat! How do you keep your vision focused on staying positive and loving yourself, even on the tough days? Share with us here!
Kaycee is a novice blogger living in Central Arkansas. She is a lover of music, writing, and a comfortable pair of yoga pants. Although an attorney by day, her recent quest for health and positive self-image started her blog adventures at http://www.voluptuousmisadventures.com.
image via tumblr