I was depressed, fat and tired.
Weighing in at 108 kilograms at 18 years old wasn’t much fun.
I had hit rock bottom, I loathed myself and couldn’t stand being me any longer. The shame of being me was too much to bare, all I wanted to do was hide away forever and eat myself into oblivion.
I spent many hours alone, losing myself in day time soaps and trashy tabloid magazines. Oh how I longed to be the beautiful women in my Soaps and my magazines.
They seemed so happy and had everything any girl could have asked for.
Whilst I was wallowing in my pit of despair I had this ingenious idea that I thought would change my life and make me happy. If only I could transform myself into looking like the beauties on TV or in the magazines all my suffering would end.
This mission to morph into a soap or magazine beauty became my world. To say I became obsessed would be an understatement. I trained my butt off (literally) and followed a strict 1200 calories a day meal plan I found in a women’s magazine.
I lived, breathed and slept this dream and within six months I went from 108kg to 56kg.
I had almost halved my body weight in six months and all my dreams finally came true.
I was finally happy…but only for about one hour.
The happiness we receive from pinning your hopes of fulfillment on our physical appearance is fleeting. Despite what the media and weight loss industry tell us, happiness doesn’t come from having a rocking hot body.
I had gone from being depressed, fat and exhausted to having a lean body, feeling constantly anxious and still depressed. Achieving a desirable body didn’t end my suffering.
However, it did teach me five important life lessons:
1. Having a rocking hot body won’t make you happy. Happiness comes from within although achieving a sexy figure may bring you short term gratification it will not bring you long term happiness
2. How you see yourself is decided by your beliefs not what you look like. Because I believed I was a “fat” person even though I had an amazing body when I looked in the mirror and I stillthought I was fat. I would stand there poking and prodding at my “perceived” imperfections every day.
3. Just because your body might look healthy, it doesn’t mean that you are actually healthy. I looked healthy, slim, toned and fit. However, my body was starving and over- worked. I was so obsessed with achieving the “look” I took very extreme measures to attain them. Surviving on a diet pills, pre workouts, protein shakes, coffee and small amounts of food. This left my body acidic and run down.
4. Your worth as a person isn’t defined by your body and having a hot body doesn’t make you a better person. I come across a lot of angry, negative people with amazing bodies.
What truly defines you as a human being is your thoughts, words and actions.
5. Learning to love yourself is the key to happiness and having the best life you could imagine. It all starts and ends with our ability to love and appreciate ourselves. When we love ourselves we make better decisions regarding our own health so we ultimately end up with a healthy mind, body and spirit. This has an incredible flow on effect into our whole lives and in my opinion creates a much happier existence.
My lessons were learned over 10 years ago now and the world we live in has changed a lot. We are bombarded today with more images than ever before of the “perfect body” and how we should look. We are told that that if we emulate beauty and possess the perfect body we will live some sort of charmed life
I am here to share with you the truth happiness comes from within, as does beauty. The weight loss industry has billions of dollars riding on you believing their bull shit so they do a very convincing job at conveying their message. But I assure you it is simply not true, acquiring a perfect body will not give you happiness nor a perfect life.
Lasting happiness can only be achieved from finding it within and no matter how hot your body unless you are happy from the inside out it will not last.
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Editor: Renée Picard