In praise of normal

The New Year’s Resolutions have long worn off, you’ve done Dry January and now you’re back to, well, normal. The year will carry on as it always does and you’re left wondering if you really are capable of making long term changes after all. Lifestyle bloggers the world over, encourage us all to follow the latest fad diet, take up the latest exercise routines and dress the way our body shape demands, but we’re just left wondering if it’s ok to be normal, to be content and happy just as we are and not to strive for perfection.

In this blog we look at how you, right now, just as you are, are completely fine. We take a look at how to learn acceptance and move away from the constant desire for change and the futile attempts to reach body and life goals that are, frankly, ludicrous. Yes, it’s pretty radical but it’s also life changing for the better.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that your body had done something terribly wrong with the number of adverts that tell you that it’s completely the wrong shape, size and texture. The truth is, it’s not. But the diet industry does enjoy adding a moral value to food and your particular body shape. The truth is that food can’t be good or bad, it’s just food, it has no moral compass. Of course, we do always have days when we don’t look our best and unless you have a make-up expert like Corrie Elle Artistry on site 24-hours a day, there will be times when you’re going to fall for all the  sales tricks and think you need to make some drastic changes to the way look. This brings us to our first point:

Question why you want to change

It’s a big question. Perhaps you feel unfit, out of shape and a little overweight. Your decision can then go one of three ways: shrug it off and realise that what you look like isn’t the most important thing about you, make some small but encouraging changes that help you feel more positive such as just moving a little more or learning to listen to your body, or go all out on a detox diet.

Out of these three choices, only the first two have any hope of offering you any long-term peace of mind. Research shows that almost all diets fail to deliver, with the dieter often regaining more than they weighed to begin with. They just don’t work.

So, if we look at the first decision, how do we make peace with ourselves?

What’s really going on?

Is being a little thicker around your middle really making you so unhappy? Chances are it’s just the element of your life that you’ve pinpointed  to “fix” but take a look at what’s really going on inside and you might find that the real cause of your unhappiness goes a little deeper. It might be that the relationship you’re in isn’t what you hoped it would be or that work isn’t fulfilling at all. Of course, there might also be issues from your past to deal with too, but whatever the case, start being honest about the real cause of your desire for change.

Stop with the rule making!

Are some of your food rules a little arbitrary and based on the idea of good and bad? It’s time to let that go and start embracing all the food groups, fats aren’t the enemy and neither is your body, so give it what it needs. The same goes for exercise. If you really hate running and are forcing yourself to pound the treadmill for hours at a time, then stop.

Find some exercise and movement that you love and feel how much more your body enjoys doing something you really get a lot out of. Get those dance shoes out or that yoga mat and start making those changes that make you so much happier.

It’s really hard to accept that being thinner, fitter, having perfect skin or hair just won’t make us happy in the long run. But this continual striving can so often distract us from the real issues that are going on in our lives. By spending a little time reconnecting and listening to our bodies we can begin to find contentment with who we are, right here and right now. You deserve it because, after all, you really are awesome, you just need to believe it for yourself.