For more posts about self-compassion, join me and others on Instagram for #JudgementFreeJune

For more posts about self-compassion, join me and others on Instagram for #JudgementFreeJune

I know there have often been weekends where I promised myself, “I’ll start over on Monday,” or “Monday I’ll get my act together.” Anyone else ever find themselves doing this?

If you do, I offer you lots and lots of compassion. The “do better tomorrow” mindset is endemic in our culture. It breeds a feeling of “never enough” and it’s hard. And it’s a major trigger for self-criticism and judgment- trying to shame ourselves into doing “better.” And it doesn’t work. Self-compassion invites us to be kind to ourselves exactly where we are.

Am I saying “never change” or “don’t purse growth”? Of course not.

I believe in our capacity to grow, to do hard things- I just believe it’s best done with self-compassion as our guide. I believe it’s best when we work WITH our bodies and our WHOLE selves- when we trust our inner wisdom. And I know this is really hard, especially when you’re struggling with issues related to perfectionism, body image concerns, disordered eating or self-acceptance.

As you are able, try not to manipulate or override your body’s cues or silence parts of yourself that may be scared or struggling. With as much kindness as possible, just listen and be with whatever is coming up for you. Our bodies are actually wonderful allies in our healing journey. I believe all those voices inside us (even the inner critic) are good parts of us, though their means may not be helpful but often their intentions and the needs they reveal are good. Self-compassion allows us to see this. Self-compassion allows us to reconnect with our bodies and our whole selves. It says- “this is hard and it’s okay to be where we are, it’s okay not to have all the answers, and maybe this is one small step we can take today to care for us. Let’s try this and if it’s a bust, that’s okay, too.”

And if this is hard for you, it’s okay to reach out for support. If you are struggling with food or your body- be it an eating disorder (anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder), struggles with body image or chronic dieting- or if you’re struggling due to a history of trauma or struggles with anxiety or perfectionism…these are not easy to face alone. I’d love to support you in the process.

You are NOT "too much"

Eating Disorder Recovery- Too Much.jpg

Ever feel like you’re “too much”? Sadly, it’s a message most of us have heard too often in our lives (especially as women and girls, or really any marginalized group). We’re told to care but not “too much.” We’re told to use our voice but not be “too loud.” We should take pride in our bodies so long as they’re not “too big.” We should be leaders and create change but not assert ourselves “too much” (and definitely don’t be “bossy”).

This week I learned that Doritos has created new “lady chips” specifically designed so women won’t crunch their chips “too loud” and their fingers won’t get “too messy.” Seriously, Doritos?!? (Insert face palm and major eye roll)

Unfortunately, we’ve come to expect these type of messages from an advertiser- but what’s harder is you may also hear this from those you love- from family, from friends. These words cut deep. Please know these words are NOT about YOU. People says these words because it is such a LOUD message in our society, and most have internalized them to some degree or another (or are actively trying to unlearn them). I know it still really hurts. AND you are not alone!!

It’s hard to live in a world that constantly tells us it’s not okay to be fully ourselves. It’s hard to use our voices, own our space, take risks or even just find peace in our bodies when we’re bombarded with these messages. We’re not invincible, we’re vulnerable and it’s really, really hard. And, dear human, we are all also so incredibly resilient! We are a capable of doing hard things.

Be gentle and kind to yourself. Find people and spaces that affirm who you are as a whole human being! Surround yourself with these voices as much as possible. And as you are able, be brave! The world needs MORE of you, not less!

I am NOT too much. You are NOT too much!