I tell my clients who want to lose weight to put away the scale. Some look at me with relief, others with trepidation – others with a combination of both emotions. The scale represents so much, too much sometimes. We often allow the scale to tell us how we ought to feel that day: Two pounds too heavy; Inadequate because we are too light: Not thin enough; or a failure because the numbers are too low or too high. Why would you want to subject yourself to this every day, sometimes multiple times a day? It’s not how you look, but how you feel.
My experience with the scale has always been negative. For many years it controlled my life. I wasn’t thin enough, good enough, strong enough, pretty enough….bold statements coming from a few numbers below my feet. But they influenced how I stood on my feet. Those numbers told me how I should feel. I would weigh myself two, three, sometimes up to five times a day. Even if I felt okay, the numbers told a different story.
The first thing I did when I took control of my health was throw out the scale. I no longer wanted to be controlled by it. As I started on my health journey sans scale, I was finally able to just concentrate on how I felt, not just how I looked (or how I should look). I was able to listen to what my body needed, eat when hungry, listen to my cravings and decide which foods worked and which did not agree with me. I began to trust my body and look at myself in a new way.
Body image is a major issue these days amongst men and women, young and old. Society demands too much of our time, thoughts and self. We are told how to dress, how to feel and how to act. Look, feel or act outside of those boundaries and you are not normal…not accepted…not enough. By taking the scale away, I hope my clients will develop an unwavering confidence. It’s not how you look, but how you feel. By creating this confidence, and releasing them from another thing that tells them how they are allowed to feel, I hope they will take a step towards true self-acceptance, healing and self-love.
The new year is approaching quickly, and many people will vow to eat better, exercise more and be healthier. With those resolutions, the scale tends to have a lot to say. So, if you are inspired by this article, I challenge you to put the scale away for a week, maybe two. Trust yourself and listen to your body. This can be your New Year’s resolution…and hopefully one you keep the rest of the year!
Want to learn more about weight management and the scale? Listen to my interview on Change Your Attitude, Change Your Life!