We are bombarded with messages from media, culture, peers, family and even religious teachings of how we should look and feel about our bodies and ourselves.
TV, magazines and social media are full of messages and images of what others say our body shape and size should be. This includes men as well as women. They program us to believe our self-worth and acceptance in society and of ourselves is tied to how our body looks on the outside.
These messages trigger feelings of shame towards ourselves or our bodies because we feel we don’t measure up to what those messages are telling us we’re supposed to be or how we’re supposed to look.
We end up forming false beliefs that we can solve our unhappiness with our body and ourselves from the outside in. We believe if we were just the perfect weight or size, that that’s the key to not feeling shame and finally loving and accepting ourselves.
To accomplish this, we try to control our bodies through deprivation, strenuous exercise, or physically altering ourselves through plastic surgery or other methods.
I struggled with the same thoughts and feelings for many years. I also tried solving it by changing myself on the outside. But I continuously failed because the problem wasn’t how I looked on the outside – it was how I felt about myself on the inside.
After decades of attempting to change my body and how I felt about it from the outside in, I discovered a book by Carol Emery Normandi and Lauralee Roark called, “It’s Not About Food: End Your Obsession with Food and Weight” in 2009. I was inspired by their philosophy that lasting change comes when we first learn to love and accept ourselves just the way we are.
This holistic approach led to a spiritual journey of exploring the deeper meaning of the emotional pain I’d been carrying and projecting onto my body all these years. It was through specific spiritual practices that I was able to experience a deeper level of healing.
I believe their 8-step approach can be broadened to address issues not just about how we feel about ourselves on the outside, but to also address how we feel about ourselves on the inside. I resonated so strongly with their holistic approach that I’ve adapted it and created an online course called, “8 Steps to Boost Your Self-Confidence: Trust Your Soul to Guide You.”
Here are the 8 steps:
- Step 1 – Discover the messages you’ve personally absorbed about yourself and your body. (Think about the messages you’ve bought into related to yourself or your body and how you may be escaping the feelings they trigger in you).
- Step 2 – Let go of self-judgment and develop self-compassion. (Recognize when you’re being judgmental of yourself and where you store these judgmental feelings in your body).
- Step 3 – Become conscious of your emotions, beliefs and defenses. (Explore how you formed defenses at a young age in order to be loved and accepted, or to protect yourself, or to feel safe).
- Step 4 – Listen to the wisdom of your physical body. (Determine which body parts you don’t like and trust them to tell you what they need).
- Step 5 – Discern your authentic truth. (Discover the power of the words you speak and how your body’s intelligence knows when truth is not honored and spoken).
- Step 6 – Find your inner voice and live your truth. (Learn how to tell the difference between your inner voice and the voices bombarding you from society).
- Step 7 – Awaken to your spiritual self. (Form a strong connection with God or the “Source of All That Is” and expressing your creativity in a way that provides meaning and purpose).
- Step 8 – Trust your process and come home to your true self. (Trust and embrace this process of transformation from the inside out and use it to empower you to create the life you desire).
To discover “How Spiritual Practices Help You Grow to Love Yourself More,” you can purchase my eBook here.
To learn about my online self-study course, “8 Steps to Boost Your Self-Confidence: Trust Your Soul to Guide You,” where you’ll learn specific spiritual practices and receive customized wisdom and healing from your very own soul, click here.
Be sure to download “7 Ways your Soul Holds the Key to Living Your Purpose” and receive other tips on how your Akashic Record can help you to live your purpose and thrive.