Purge Negative Symbols
By Carolyn Richardson
Toni Raiten-D’Antonio, author of Ugly as Sin, The Truth About How We Look and Finding Freedom from Self-Hatred sets some sobering evidence of American women’s problems with eating. She says, “Experts at the University of North Carolina have found that three-quarters of women have disordered feelings, thoughts and behaviors related to eating.”
While extreme forms of purging, including the use of laxatives and vomiting after eating, do not cure irrational thoughts related to losing weight, some forms of purging are beneficial and that is what we will talk about today. As you purge, you will gain better control over your environment and move forward with a new confidence. By letting go of irrational connections to food and weight loss, you will become a better person overall.
Certain people were instrumental in making your weight a bigger issue than was necessary. Whether it was a sibling who teased you, a mother who constantly brought up weight, or a boyfriend who talked about how beautiful you’d be thinner, don’t let their approval become your motivation. Simply put: purge the people-pleaser in you. Place their comments out of mind. Make your forthcoming success your own inside joke. Your new weight may open the door for a healing conversation with the very people that hurt you and that alone will be gratifying.
There are symbols all around you that hold negative emotional attachments. Get rid of them. Stop revisiting those dark places. Tell your family that you are taking down pictures that make you feel less than beautiful. You can keep them stashed away in a box for your future before-and-after party, but keep them out of sight while you’re trying to build yourself up. You can also put up pictures or representations of the body you’d like to be, but do whatever it takes to surround yourself with positive thoughts. You need to feel full emotionally as much as possible to avoid resorting back to bad habits.
Many people have a story about losing weight and buying a new pair of jeans. (Remember Oprah in the 80s?) But, some of those same people also have stories about needing their old “fat” jeans months later. Don’t allow that to be your story. As soon as a piece of clothing truly doesn’t fit, throw it away. Whether you give it to a girlfriend, a thrift store, or a homeless shelter, let it go. Sure it’s worth hundreds of dollars, but you cannot afford not to let it go. If you are midway to your weight loss goal, consider buying clothes from a thrift store to bridge the wardrobe gap. The hardest part of your weight loss journey will be the first 6 to 12 months after you reach your weight loss goal. Not having clothes to wear if you gain 10 pounds back is a great way to keep you in the gym and away from your old habits. You need to know that you cannot turn back after all the hard work you put in.
Have you purged your life?