Our emotional wellbeing goes hand-in-hand with our physical wellbeing. Have you ever noticed that when your mind isn’t right, neither is your body? The reverse is true too. I learned this the hard way.
Like many people, I carried around the weight of being physically unfit. I tried dieting and failed. I tried the latest fitness craze and failed there too. Exercising and eating healthier isn’t supposed to yield bad results, so where was I going wrong?
Without failure, within a few weeks or months of starting my “new plan”, self-doubt would trickle in.
I would think to myself:
“I can’t keep up this act. Who am I kidding? I will eventually succumb to the chocolate cake that has been calling my name since I started!”
It took many failed attempts (and the doctor telling me that I was borderline diabetic) for me to realize that I needed to make a lifestyle change. Up until then, I was lost, bouncing from one fad diet to the next. What I really needed was a drastic change to my way of thinking.
I began to ask myself, why can’t I maintain a healthy lifestyle? I’m good enough. I’m worthy of good health, and I’m certainly strong enough to keep moving toward my health goals; after all, I’ve reached plenty of other goals.
I started journaling, keeping track of my eating and exercise patterns. After some deep introspection, I realized that I was carrying around a lot of emotional baggage, and it was weighing me down, literally. I carried it with me everywhere but especially into my eating and exercise habits. I realized the “chocolate cake” was far more than just chocolate cake. I knew I had to confront my issues before I could move on from them, so I did.
Getting rid of my emotional baggage has not only made me emotionally lighter, but physically lighter as well. I am proud to say that today I am 40 pounds freer than I was at this same time last year.
Such a transformation is possible for you too! It won’t be easy, but it’s possible. It starts with freeing yourself from the burden of your emotional baggage, but there’s more.
You’ll also need to:
•Embrace that being healthy means identifying yourself in that way. I had to stop being ashamed of the fact that I was doing something to make me better. Flaunt your newly developing good health. You might even encourage someone else.
•Stop making excuses for yourself. In the long run those excuses only hurt you.
•Resist diving off the deep end. This means not going at your goals in such a hardcore fashion that you end up trading one unhealthy lifestyle for another. Through pacing myself and knowing my limits, I was able to find balance–you will too.
You deserve to be free of all the baggage that weighs you down. Are you ready to let it go?
The Stone Foundation is a community of counseling professionals who are here to help you live your best life. If we can assist you as you release the baggage that is constantly weighing you down, please visit www.thestonefoundation.com or call 410.296.2004.
This article is intended for general educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional counseling or medical care.
Victoria Johnson is a Communications major who maintains honors status at the Anne Arundel Community College. She currently writes for The Baltimore Times and has written for the AACC school newspaper, The Campus Current. Victoria’s talent stems beyond her writing and schooling. She is also the co-founder of God’s Jewels, a charitable organization designed to benefit individuals in Africa who seek spiritual enlightenment.