If you’ve been reading the blog for a while, you probably recall my involvement last summer in New Balance’s Girls Night Out campaign, a night for women to socialize, sweat and have fun with their girlfriends! Last Thursday, I had the opportunity to return as a host for June’s GNO event, and I couldn’t have been more honored to dive in.
We all met at the New Balance Boston Experience Store in Back Bay to kick off the evening, and were served Essentia Water (thank goodness, it was a hot one!) and delish homemade granola bars upon our arrival.
[eek, that’s my name on there, minus the extra “R” ;)]
When I got there, I was immediately greeted by the lovely staff at Regan and New Balance, and then head straight to the back to get my TribeTats on before the girls arrived. I was super thrilled to have them as one of the sponsors, as I absolutely LOVE what their company is all about — self-expression + empowerment, baby! While all the tats were super cute (decisions, decisions!), I decided on the gold feather as they’ve always been super meaningful in my life. To me, they symbolize strength and new beginnings…and what better than to have one on my right shoulder?
The theme of the evening was “Booty and Arm Ready,” focusing on getting our beach confidence up and our arms, booties and minds ready for summer! I love that New Balance shares a similar philosophy as me, recognizing that it’s not all about your looks or how many miles you can crush. At the end of the day, how do you feel and where’s your mindset at? That to me is what really matters most. (More on that in a bit!)
Each GNO event always starts with a good sweat session to get the girls going, with your choice of a fun run or a group fitness class! Tonight, we were in for a special treat with an option to take the Booty + Arm Sculpt Class with New Balance ambassador Sarah Kusch. Our group head off to Titus Sparrow Park in the South End, where we were greeted with our mats lined up and the fabulous Brek.One in the house (er, he park!) spinning live beats.
[Oh hey, Eliza!]
The workout was sweaty + fast-paced, including a mix of squats, lunges, planks, jumping jacks and some core work. It was nearly 90-degrees, so all of us were dripping in sweat and Sarah did a great job keeping us gals motivated!
After the workout, we head back to New Balance to cool down and refresh. It was now my time to “take the stage” and share some thoughts on what being “Booty + Arm Ready” and beach-body confident means to me.
I confessed to the girls about why summer used to give me quite a bit of anxiety, including my hangup on having “fat thighs” and hiding behind baggy shorts at the beach. Thankfully I’ve now come to realize that it’s simply not worth all the dieting, depriving and body shame I put myself through!
I shared with the group my top 4 simple tips for getting “beach ready” this summer:
1. Ditch the diets: no amount of diets or lemonade detoxing is going to make you feel better about yourself or your body. Instead, nourish yourselves with the foods that work for you!
2. Embrace your body: Honor your body, and appreciate your imperfections! Focus on YOU, rather than your best friend, the girl at the beach in the teeny bikini, or the model in the magazine with the “perfect” arms.
3. Believe you can: You can run that mile, take that dance class, get your body stronger. It’s all up to you, and the more you tell yourself you can do it, the sooner it’ll become a reality.
4. Have fun: I think we take ourselves too darn seriously, sometimes. Make sure to squeeze in some time for play, dinner’s out, romance and summer fun!
After my talk, Sarah shared her story with the girls and opened it up for some Q & A, where we learned how she balances her life as a single mom, where she grew up, and how she got into the fitness industry in the first place. We then had the girls sign the “Believe Board” with one promise to themselves they wanted to hold onto until the next GNO! After all, what better way to stick to your intention than by declaring it out-loud and looking at it every day?
[Mine was all about movement, baby!]
Attendees then mingled + enjoyed freshly made juices from Boston’s Thirst Juice Company, cocktails and light bites…plus some serious arm candy from TribeTats. New Balance even had an “InstaPrint” booth set up, where all photos from the night with the #NBGNO instantly printed out into tiny little take-home photos. Talk about capturing the moment in real time!
Before leaving, each gal was given a special GNO tote bag to take home with them. And as always, New Balance didn’t disappoint. The bags were stuffed with the latest issue of Women’s Health, a sheet of beautiful TribeTats, a GNO bobble, and some special discounted vouchers. (The swag bags make saying goodbye not as hard!)
It was a pretty solid Girls Night Out if I do say so myself. Thanks to all who attended and made the night so fun!
The next GNO event will be held in July — stay tuned for an announcement next month! In the meantime, be sure to check out New Balance’s brand new loyalty app MyNB, where you can earn rewards points for different activities to redeem fab prizes like bibs for race entries, swag and more. Pretty sweet, huh?
Note: This event is now full. Please stay tuned for updates regarding additional spaces.
Remember last month when I posted about New Balance’s Girls Night Out campaign? If you missed the post, no worries you can catch it here! In short, New Balance is working to redefine the meaning of “girls night,” focusing on empowering women through fitness, socializing and simply having a good time.
And I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I’m going to be playing a part in hosting the upcoming “GNO Celebration” in Boston this month (and in July, more on that later)!
The big event will be held on Thursday, June 26th at 6 p.m and it’s 100% free of charge. Participants will meet at the New Balance Experience Store (located at 583 Boylston St in Copley Square) and then take off for a bootcamp-style workout with New Balance Fitness Ambassador Holly Perkins.
After the workout, we’ll all come together for the ultimate girls night fully stocked with appetizers, cocktails, music by BrekOne and swag bags. Oh, and did I mention SHAPE Magazine’s fitness editor Laurel Leicht will be their sharing insights on what makes her strong?
Excellent is Strong
Speaking of strong, the whole theme of the evening is “Excellent is Strong.” I was thrilled when I heard that New Balance’s focus for the evening is on strength and empowering women not just through fitness but through mind, body and spirit.
I’m so sick of hearing sayings like “Strong is the new sexy,” focusing solely on women’s bodies.
I feel that healthy is far more than what your body looks like from the outside. It’s about how you feel in your body. It’s about the attitude you carry through with you throughout the day. It’s about digging deep into your soul and finding what makes you feel truly inspired.
It’s not something that can be measured by a scale, viewed in a mirror or shown on your pant tag.
I’ve been through my own battles with body image + feeling strong and happy in my own skin (which I’ll share more on at June’s event), so I excited to celebrate with other women.
You are strong. You are excellent. You are beautiful.
Plan Your Own GNO
If you’re loving all of this GNO talk like I am, go ahead and plan your own! Simply join GNO Meetup, and then get started on creating your own Buzz Run. Here you’ll be able to map out your perfect route, invite friends, and even get alerts for other runs going on in your area.
How cool is that? End the evening with a healthy happy hour or just some solid catch-up time with your gals.
Come Join Me
Are you sold? I don’t blame you.
Register for the FREE event on June 26th before it sells out to get in on the action! Just scroll down to GNO Celebrations > Boston > RSVP.
Plus, I’m going to be one of the hostesses of the evening & have some special announcements to share with the group and would love your support (especially when I’m up on stage with the mic)!
Are you in?
The other evening, I nearly fell off my chair when I read my friend & fellow health coach Kendall Covitz’s Facebook status:
“A trainer looked me up and down and said ‘I can make your butt smaller and shrink you.’ I didn’t say anything since I was working for another company. What would you have done?”
Yes, I was mortified this happened to her but the reason I was shocked is that the SAME EXACT THING happened to me the day before. (You’ll read all about my story below in a minute) Was this a new trend? I had to reach out to her to tell her my story. We quickly realized that not only did this happen to the both of us just two days apart, but it was the same trainer.
After making each other giggle and realize what the woman said to us was pure hogwash (we both know each other are beautiful even if that means we’re not stick thin models), we knew we had to do something about it.
You see, as holistic health coaches, Kendall and I both work specifically with women to help them feel beautiful in their own skin by eating the foods & doing the exercises that are right for their bodies. Because, as I say on this blog over and over again, what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for another. You gotta do what works for you, girlfriend!
When someone (especially a personal trainer & businesswoman who people look up to) is going around telling women they need to change their bodies or they’d be more beautiful THIS way, that’s putting people into cookie-cutter molds & totally going against everything Kendall & I believe in.
What if she said that to someone who was happy with their curves? What if she said that to someone with body image issues, or an eating disorder? What if she said that to someone who is in the midst of a major weight-loss journey, who is proud of their success? What if it’s not every single woman’s goal to LOSE weight or have a teeny-tiny butt or be stick thin? What if that’s the body she was given?
Imagine the harm that could do.
So yes, it’s safe to say we were pretty fired up about this! Hence Kendall’s novel idea of writing a joint blog post was born.
“I can get rid of those,” she said to me, pointing to my thighs covered in a pair of black workout leggings. “I used to have big thighs like you too.”
She then hopped up and took me in another room with a mirror, and had me stand right in front of it. I was starting to feel a little awkward. And as if this was her absolute favorite part of the day, she began rattling off everything “wrong” with my body.
“I can get rid of everything bad about you and make you hot!” she gleefully shouted.
I was in a meeting for work, and I said nothing. Not one word. I smiled, laughed and moved on with my day. But the more I got to thinking about it, the more I became infuriated. Gosh, I wish I said something. Anything.
That I love my body as is. That my curves and “too big” bum make me feel womanly & I adore shaking my hips on the dance floor (and in Zumba!) That these “fat thighs” have actually finished 3 half marathons, run hundreds of miles, and skied down dozens of slopes. That I actually am 30 pounds lighter than I ever was and got there by learning to love my body & eating real food, not counting calories. That I enjoy working out for my body, but mostly because it makes me feel good. That it’s my body, and everyone’s bodies are made differently.
That it’s not her job to tell me what I “should” and “shouldn’t” look like. That I have no interest in losing any weight at the time nor do I want my butt to be shrinked, thank you very much. That I am in good health with perfect cholesterol and a healthy weight for my size. That I don’t own a scale anymore, or have any interest in owning one. That I’m proud of who I am and what I look like. That she’s not entitled to tell other women how they should look.
But I said nothing because I was there on behalf of work.
Part of me was happy that I wasn’t upset by the situation. After years of body-hatred, dieting and trying to mold myself to look a certain way, I have finally come out on the other end. I finally know my worth. No, I wasn’t sad or hurt or ashamed. I didn’t want to cry, run away or beat myself up. Rather, I was downright pissed. I was fired up.
And yes, now, I feel the need to say something.
Here’s the thing: she didn’t know my story nor care to ask. If she had said that to me 9 years ago when I was a chubby junior in highschool (right before I went on my first diet), I would have been mortified and embarrassed, hiding my body with over-sized clothing and a fake smile.
If she had said that to me 6 years ago when I was a self-conscious, calorie-counting dieting, sophomore with a borderline eating disorder, I would have gone home to weigh myself, balled my eyes out, cut my calories even further and skipped dinner.
If she had said that to me 4 years ago when I was just starting to like my body again & lose the weight by eating REAL food, I would have pinched my fat and thought maybe I was never going to be able to love my body after all. That maybe I should just give up on this natural weight loss thing.
Are any of these scenarios promoting health or positive self-image? Is this the way to speak to young women, despite their weight or body size? Are any of these comments doing any good? What kind of message is this portraying to women?
During my years of obsessive dieting, I believed that my body needed to look like all the other girls in the magazines in order to be considered beautiful. I thought that the number on the scale defined who I was. I l let myself think that no man would ever want me unless I lost the weight and that once I lost the weight, then I’d be happy.
I didn’t realize at the time that it’s the other way around: to truly love your body and find your happy weight, you first need to start treating it with love.
I keep replaying those shameful words over and over again in my head, going back to all my wonderful clients. Most of them beautiful bright young women in their twenties who didn’t realize how beautiful they are. Most of whom feared food, hated their bodies or felt they weren’t “enough.” Most of them who were alot like me…6 years ago.
Every time I picture this trainer saying something like that to them, or any young women, it breaks my heart. These women need encouragement, hope, positivity, love. They need to know that yes, they can. That their bodies are beautiful as is, and once they themselves can see that, the transformation can begin. That your body is meant to be treated with love and kindness, as it’s the only one you have.
But by telling them no? That they cant? That their butts are too big and their thighs are too fat? That they can look “hot” if they get rid of all the “bad” things about them? That some stranger, who you just met, can shrink you to be “perfect?” Man, if only she knew the damage she could be causing.
Last night, after decorating our first real Christmas tree with my man, my home was full of so much love. Then as we were settling in for the night & cozying up on the couch, suddenly I thought about this woman and what she had said to me and started balling my eyes out. Uncontrollably. I didn’t really quite know why I was crying.
Perhaps I was finally feeling everything she said & having my reaction. Perhaps I needed to cry, and that was OK. Perhaps I was thinking about everything I’ve gone through over the past years, and was brought back back to my vulnerable, self-conscious self for a little bit. But I let myself cry. I let the feelings come out.
Then I remembered something: that I’m not that girl anymore that I was 6 years ago. That I am much stronger, more confident and happier in my own skin.
And I wasn’t going to let that woman take this away from me.
No we have no intention of bashing this woman or calling her out (in fact, we find that irrelevant & silly to stoop down to that level). But rather we desire to take the negativity & anger we experienced from this situation & spread our message: a message of body love, positivity and empowerment.
Ladies, don’t you dare let anyone tell you what your body should or shouldn’t be. Only you know what makes you feel your very best self, and no one knows your body quite like you do!
I highly encourage all of you to go to the mirror after reading this post (clothed or unclothed) and point out every. single. thing. you love about your body. What makes you you? What are you proud of? Honor that.
Please make sure to check out Kendall’s take on the issue over at On an Inhale, and give her some love on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We’re on a mission to spread our message to as many women as we can! And please, speak up. I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts on the issue! Have you experienced similar body-bashing? What would you have said if you were in our shoes? …
As you know by now, I spent years bashing and hating on my body. I’m talking total mean girl. Ironically enough, it was during the times I was most strict on myself, counting calories, exercising twice a day to burn off indulgences, and eating food that tasted like cardboard that I hated my body most.
I would tell myself horrible things when I looked in the mirror like:
I am not good enough.
I will never be thin enough.
My friends are more beautiful than I am.
I need to cut back more in order to lose the weight.
My thighs are fat.
I am a failure for “over-indulging” last night.
If I lose more weight, maybe then I can finally get a boyfriend.
In due time, I began to believe these horrible thoughts. They became a part of who I was. That’s the funny thing about our mind; it’s a powerful, powerful tool and we must be careful what we tell ourselves (especially when it’s hurtful).
Practicing positive affirmations can be an amazing way to turn negative thoughts into loving thoughts as you make the transition over to self-love! And no, they don’t need to be reserved solely for yoga class or meditation gurus! In fact, you can practice in the comfort of your own home…in your PJs with a cup o’ tea.
Here are 5 body-love affirmations you can start reciting to yourself daily:
1. By depriving myself from the foods my body wants and needs, I am depriving myself from living to my fullest potential. I will begin to fill up on the things that make me feel my best self.
2. When listening to my body, I make better choices. I will slow down, listen and become more in tune with my body.
3. There is no such thing as the perfect body. I choose to love up my assets and embrace my flaws, as they make me who I am. My body is strong and beautiful.
4. No one can love me until I love myself first. Self-love is the most powerful kind of love. I choose to be kinder to myself.
5. If I feel beautiful on the inside, I will feel beautiful on the outside. I will take better care of my insides.
Want more at-home body-love affirmations? Join my new online group program, the 21-Day “Little Black Dress” Summer Shape-Up for daily affirmations, recipes, clear action steps, a private community Facebook Group and one-on-one coaching with me! After all, every women deserves to shine in her LBD (and she shouldn’t have to starve herself doing so).
What do you tell yourself when you look in the mirror? If you’re hating on your body, I’d love to chat with you! Schedule your FREE “Body Love” Breakthrough Session today! Click here to view my online calendar for the next two weeks or email me to learn more. …
The thoughts we tell ourselves become a part of who we are. Therefore when we say mean, hurtful things to ourselves like “I’m fat,” “My thighs are too big,” “I’ll never look as pretty as she does,” or “I’m not good enough” we start to believe these thoughts. Doesn’t do much for our confidence, now does it?
As women, we constantly beat ourselves up and push ourselves to be better, faster, stronger, prettier, sexier. We are our #1 critic after all. We say things to ourselves that we would never dare say to a best friend!
This weekend, I encourage you to be a little easier on yourself. Look into the areas where you aren’t being so nice to your body, and ask yourself where those beliefs are coming from. Then think about how you want to feel when you look in the mirror and start to embody those feelings.
Do you want to feel beautiful, strong, confident? Start telling yourself I am beautiful, I am strong, I am confident. Watch as your mood lifts as you begin to see you already are all of those things. Self-love at its best, baby!
Fill in the blank. I want to feel________when I look in the mirror.
Have a lovely weekend friends!
Many of us live on a schedule, and make choices based on habits. Most of the time, our decisions are based on what’s right or in the norm versus how we’re feeling.
We eat the boring iceberg salad with fat-free dressing because we’re trying to slim down, even though we may really want the juicy, grass-fed burger. We sign up for 5 cardio classes in one work-week to stay in shape, even though we may really need some yoga (or heck, even a nap.) We do what’s right and punish ourselves for being “bad” when we do what we presume to be wrong.
How is this behavior showing up in your life?
This week, I’ve been lacking on the fitness front and old me would have beat myself up about it. New me realizes my body needed rest, nourishment and replenishing. Instead of ignoring my body’s signals by forcing myself to run it off on the treadmill for hours (old me), I now understand the beauty of looking within and taking a break. And this morning’s 7 a.m. Vinyasa flow at Back Bay Yoga with the lovely Cara Gilman totally hit the spot.
After all, our bodies are smart, and if you listen closely they will tell you exactly what you need at any given time. Reflect (without judgement) to understand your individual needs. Today I’d like you to think about what your body’s really craving (inside & out.) Is it craving Love? Rest? Energy? Passion? Serenity? Excitement? Peace? Does is want nourishment, appreciation and forgiveness?
Instead of rushing through your days the rest of the week, I challenge you to slow down and notice what’s going on inside without any judgement. Notice what your body wants & needs in the moment, and respect that this will change every day.
When we listen to our bodies & treat it with love, we become more in tune with what it’s really crying for.
Now, I ask, what is your body craving lately? …
Good afternoon lovely ladies, and Happy Friday! This week’s Friday Flashback has to do with something that’s been on my mind a lot lately: confidence.
To me, confidence means trusting your inner self to guide you & feeling certain that things will work themselves out. It’s knowing that, even though things aren’t perfect just yet, everything is going to be OK.
Often times, confidence gets a bad rap, mistaken for cockiness or being arrogant. But today I’m going to talk about the other end of the spectrum…when you let your confidence (or lack there of) hold you back and prevent you from living your greatest potential.
Back when I was dieting and in a pretty messed up relationship with the scale, my confidence level was about a 2 on a scale of 1 to 100. While I went about my day all smiles pretending everything was “perfect,” in the inside I was struggling.
I felt unhappy with my weight, weighing myself 2, 3, 5 times a day hoping that a drop in numbers would make me truly happy, only it didn’t. Every time the scale went up a pound, my confidence (and self-worth for that matter) would take a major hit.
I felt “fat” and all days were suddenly “fat days,” in turn forcing me to go on strict diets, count my calories, binge eat, guilt trip and then start the cycle all over again…every day.
I felt not good enough, constantly comparing myself to my skinny, bold, eat-what-they-want-when-they-want 100% confident friends. I wanted that.
I felt ugly in my body, refusing to wear jeans and covering up in baggy shorts at the beach to hide. On the other hand, sometimes I’d wear tight dresses & high heels like my pretty friends so I could fit in and create confidence. (Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way.)
You see, yes you can create confidence but it has to come from the inside. And I was too busy hiding, throwing self pity parties and burying myself in diet books to see that I was looking in all the wrong places. I was looking for outside validation from others which is never a recipe for success.
Years later, I still struggle with confidence from time to time, now more so involving career & success than with body image. But I’ve come a long, long way from my years of diet-hood. One thing is certain: no matter where you struggle, one thing is certain: until your confidence shifts, you won’t be able to move forward.
So many of us stress about losing the last 10 pounds, fitting into our skinny jeans, getting a perfect boyfriend or achieving those dream abs. And what do we focus on? The fact that we’re 10 pounds “too heavy,” too fat for our skinny jeans, unwanted, or have a flabby tummy. Those negative hate thoughts right there create a state of STUCK-NESS.
So how do you get unstuck? Instead of working on changing things on the outside (doing more, cutting back on food, finding a boyfriend, doing it all “right”) focus on the inside. Focus on building your confidence within as that’s where all the magical, beautiful changes are made.
If you need support in this area, I’d love to work with you. Schedule your FREE “15 Minutes to Fabulous” Breakthrough Session today to help release some of that gunk holding you back and move forward! …
Do you weigh yourself 2, 3, 5 times a day?
Do you let the number on the scale control your emotions & make or break your day?
Are you sick and tired of yo-yo dieting and ready to make changes for REAL?
Do you constantly compare yourself to your friends, co-workers, siblings, etc.?
Do you put food into two categories: “good” and “bad?”
Do you constantly tell yourself you’re fat, ugly and not skinny or pretty enough?
Have you tried everything…and I mean everything?
Are you fed up with counting calories, and ready to make the bigger things count?
I know, it’s not fun. I’ve know because, well, that used to be me.
I’ve been in your shoes! That’s why I’ve created a brand new program “Ditch Dieting, Fall in Love with Yourself” 90-Day Mind/Body Transformation to break through all that “stuff” holding you back & create a life you love.
For me, one of the most integral parts of ditching the diet-obsessed living was breaking up with the scale. Like any breakup, it isn’t easy but once you move on everything becomes so much more clear. Read my post “How I Broke Up With The Scale (Once & For All)” published over at MindBodyGreen.
P.S. Don’t forget to enter my Food Should Taste Good Giveaway for some tasty beach-day snacking!…
As women, we’re constantly comparing ourselves to our friends, acquaintances, co-workers, siblings, business partners, fitness idols, you name it. While being inspired by someone or looking up to someone is perfectly fine or normal, it’s when the comparisons set it that things can get a little messy. This typically leads to feelings of jealousy, resentment, judgement or straight up “not good enough” which can be extremely harmful to your personal wellbeing.
While I still struggle from time to time to resist my ego and natural inclination to compare myself, I’ve realized it does no one any good. Here’s why you should stop comparing your plate, pant size, paycheck, yoga posture and everything in between:
1. You don’t know their full story. Often times when we compare, we wish we were *just like* the other person OR we judge the other person. The truth of the matter is that we don’t know their full story, and we may never know their full story. Pay attention to your own story instead.
2. Bio-Individuality: Everyone is different and what works for one person may not work for another. This is why some women swear by vegan diets, and others thrive on lean meats. It’s also why some hate to run & prefer yoga, and others could run outside all day every day if their life depended on it. If you’re constantly imitating someone else’s behavior, you’ll lose site of your own strengths. Listen to your body and pay attention to what makes you feel your very best self (not your best friend).
3. There’s Only One You. Yes, there are other people out there who are doing what you do. Yes, there are other women who are making double (even 10x) the amount of money you make. Yes, your best friend is in The. Best. Relationship. Yes, your yoga teacher has the most toned arms ever. However, there is only one you. Focus on yourself and let your inner goddess shine.
4. Focusing On Yourself Allows for Growth: I used to be that girl in yoga class that would stare at everyone else’s poses to make sure I was doing it “right.” Turns out, looking at everyone else prevented me from getting stronger. Once I began listening to the cues and focusing on my body, I began to get stronger. Suddenly getting it “right” or “wrong” didn’t matter anymore. It’s what’s right for your body that counts. This holds true for all aspects of your life.
5. Jealously is Ugly: Jealousy aint pretty. To be jealous means that you, in some way or another, aren’t satisfied with a particular part of your life. Once you quit wasting your time being envious (and trust me, I’ve been there) suddenly your life becomes THAT much more fabulous. It’s just how things work!
What areas in your life do you compare yourself to others? How do you snap out of it and bring your focus back to YOU? …
Why Your Relationship with Food is Directly Connected to Your Relationship with Money (& My Big Self Discovery)
This past weekend, I attended a Business Conference for Wellness Professionals in NYC—HMBA Live: Step into Your Spotlight—that literally changed my life. I can honestly say the past three days have been among the most fulfilling days of my life: eye-opening, fun, and transformational all in one.
I cried, laughed, danced, sang, ate, wrote, learned, reflected and heck, even spoke in front of a room full of 400+ people….on a microphone. In addition, I networked, made new friends, and relished in a community bursting with positive energy.
And while all of those things were life changing in and of itself, one of the most eye-opening “A-Hah” moments I had was when we started talking about money. More particularly our relationship with money. Just bear with me here…
I never really took the time to explore my relationship with money, although I certainly knew it wasn’t a good one. In fact, it was toxic, to say the least. I say was because all of this is about to change…starting 48 hours ago.
However, up until now, money and I just didn’t jive. We were heading straight to a break-up and boy was it going to be a nasty one. I’d spend my days obsessing over money up to the point where it was affecting every area of my life from my career to my self-love to my relationship. I’d anxiously swipe my credit card to get it over with (especially with impulse buys), and refused to look at my balance when withdrawing cash from the ATM. Then I’d experience several days of guilt for spending “too much” irresponsibly. To top it all off, I’d constantly compare myself to friends, family and colleagues who were making more money feeling both jealous and ashamed.
My beliefs were “I don’t have enough money,” “I will never have enough money,” “I can’t make good money doing what I love”, “Once I have money I will be happy” and “That’s great for her that she’s successful and making money but I will never be able to do that. HA! That’d be the day.”
It’s plain to see that money consumed me and, well, I let it. I wanted more of it, but refused come face-to-face with it at the same time. Therefore I ignored it and instead hid behind my go-to place of feeling scattered and “not enough” where in some twisted way I felt safe. I felt safe because this is the pattern I was used to.
It wasn’t until the beautiful Stacey and Carey of Holistic MBA encouraged me to look at my “Money Mirror” (a super powerful exercise if I do say so myself) that I finally saw things so clearly. One of the things we talked about is that how our relationship with money is directly related to our relationship with food, and in fact any relationship in our lives. These relationships—spouses, friends, business partners, co-workers, food, body image, boyfriends, family—are all tied together.
I quickly realized, as tears swelled my eyes, that my relationship with money was exactly the same of my relationship with food (in my late-teens and early twenties, that is). I spent my days obsessing over calories, the number on the scale and how much weight I had left to lose to the point where it consumed my life. I went through periods of bingeing (a.k.a. anxiously eating as much peanut butter out of the jar as fast as I could) followed by periods of deprivation and guilt a.k.a. essentially starving myself. Oh, and to top it all off I constantly compared myself to friends, family, and sorority girls who were skinnier and prettier than I was.
My beliefs were “I am not good enough, pretty enough or skinny enough,” “I will never lose the weight and be enough,” “Feeling beautiful and confident in my body is just not in the cards for me,” “Once I am skinny my life will be perfect,” and “Yea, she looks great but I will never look like she does.”
Are you seeing the pattern here? By no surprise, my money mirror card (there are four of them) that resonated with me was “Deservability,” also known as “The Pleaser.” Essentially, this type of person constantly feels guilty and tells themselves “I am not good enough as I am.” Constantly comparing themselves to others, “The Pleaser” creates anxiety, chaos and overworks herself leading to major burnout.
I finally got it…money was my new addiction and I was treating it exactly how I used to treat food (and my body). When I went up on the microphone to share my realization, I couldn’t stop shaking. This is it. It finally all makes sense! My limiting beliefs around money were preventing me from living the life of my dreams, just as my limiting beliefs around food and my body were preventing me from loving myself fully and truly. And while I’ve figured out the whole food thing, and in fact help other women overcome similar struggles, money and I still have a little work.
As I spoke, Stacey asked me point blank: “How did you overcome your issues with dieting?” and I said back, hands shaking, “I just quit…I let go. I told myself enough was enough and I didn’t want to feel so stressed anymore.”
She then had me write down this simple affirmation: I am safe to feel safe. I repeated it to myself in my head. It sounded nice…peaceful even. You see, you don’t have to struggle anymore. It is OK to give yourself permission to make a positive change you know deep down you need to make for yourself in order to transform. Whether you are struggling with your relationship, body image or food habits, know that things don’t have to be so damn hard and that you don’t have to suffer anymore.
While I am still on my personal journey with my money relationship, I am proud to say that I have healed myself from food torture and most importantly that you can do the same…starting today. When you make the investment in yourself to overcome these fears and “step into your spotlight,” anything is possible. And I mean it.
Are you ready to make the investment in yourself? If you suffer from compulsive dieting and want to lose the weight & gain the confidence while falling in love with yourself, I’d LOVE to invite you for a FREE 15-minute “Diet-Free Breakthrough Session.” Fill out this quickie form to schedule your complimentary session today.