A lovely lady blogger/real life friend of mine Kelly (from Be Anything But Quiet!) recently posted about this idea of Love vs Fear. It really got me thinking. The idea is that we are motivated in everything we do by one or the other. For example:
Do I go to the gym because I love myself? Because it makes me feel good, strong, healthy? Because I love the way I feel afterwards?
Or do I go to the gym because I am scared of being fat? Because I’m scared I won’t get cast in certain parts? Or worst of all, because I am not ENOUGH the way I am?
In my opinion, fear motivated actions (with regards to fitness) are never going to last. You can’t hate exercise your way to a healthy body and life. It has to come from a place of love. I do really love the feeling of sore muscles after a good workout. I really love the feeling of sweat dripping off my elbows in hot yoga. I love the way I feel after working out. My friend, Alicia, who is a Bikram yoga instructor said in passing to me the other day, “I don’t LOVE yoga. I love the way it makes me feel”. She’s right. Bikram is crazy hard.
I was lying on a sweaty mat in a Moksha class last week and these love/fear thoughts were bouncing around with me. I find yoga is a place that I get all body focused. I am staring at myself in a mirror, scantily clad, and in a quiet room. It’s like a pressure cooker sometimes. I focused on trying to breathe in “love” and breathe out “fear”. Like a mantra. Every couple of breaths I would try and think of a specific thing I love (I love how strong my legs are in that pose) and then a couple breaths later I would think of a specific fear that I needed to let go of (I am scared that I’m not good enough to do what I do). Hippy? Maybe?! It was pretty deep at the time. I enjoyed it.
I don’t think that I can honestly say that I have a completely healthy relationship with food and exercise.
I grew up in a bodysuit in front of the mirrors in ballet class. I watched myself become the chubby kid. I grew out of that stage, but I was never the “skinny” girl. My teacher used to tell me that if I turned out properly I’d get rid of my “saddlebags”, from age 13 or so. Love that double criticism eh?! I now work in a field where I have to wear whatever they tell me to. On stage. In front of hundreds of people. (When I see all this written out I wonder how I feel as sane as I do).
This all being said…
I want to move away from my fear based self talk. I want to continue to do what I do, but not beat myself up about stuff that goes wrong. I want to use this blog as a place to celebrate my accomplishments, share our triumphs, get advice from other healthy, active, positive people. I really, truly, believe that Love is greater than fear.
Do you feel like you engage in negative, fear based, self talk?
PS- thanks for listening to my self counseling session!