[Photo by: eljoja]
Seeing pictures of my fat self would disgust me. Staring back at me was someone I no longer wanted to be. I couldn’t believe how bad I let myself go.
Now every time I pick up a 40 pound dumbbell, I think to myself that in my hands was the extra weight I carried around so many years ago.
I was in a relationship that no longer inspired me. I was in a university program that was at odds with my values. I resented the decisions I made to please others. I was disappointed that my high paying factory job had allowed me to buy everything I wanted, but left a gaping hole of what I truly needed.
I had stuffed myself with so many Krispy Kreme donuts and endless litres of dark cola’s before I finally hit a brick wall. I was constantly bloated. I’d roll down my car window to air out the repugnant gas I passed. I dragged my feet when I walked.
When I saw videos of myself, I was astonished at how sluggish I was. I had the posture of someone with a whittled down personality. I hid my big belly and insecurity with baggy clothes.
Desperate for change I hunted for extreme solutions at the store. Many labels targeted my pain points so well that I would immediately jump on their bandwagon.
I dosed on pills and potions that stripped my intestines of all good and even bad bacteria (which I learned afterward). I survived on liquids for days straight as suggested. Still, I was so dehydrated and malnourished I would get massive headaches, stomach pains, and embarrassingly frequent trips to the bathroom.
I yo-yoed up and down for a while and was unable to keep my weight down. Nothing lasted.
The cycle kept repeating until I unknowingly discovered what would create lasting weight loss results for me. It was not a product or something I could buy online.
It was self worth.
And I had none. Nada.
It was reflected in the poor choices I made around food, exercise and the people I hung around. I was disconnected with who I was. The words passion, excitement and inspiration were simply not in my vocabulary.
Over a short period of time I began to fill that once gaping hole with wisdom instead of junk food. The biggest catalyst came in two major forms. The famous self help program Personal Power II by Anthony Robbins. And the legendary classic, Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.
Picking up these books were like learning a different language. It was so hard to wrap my head around some of the ideas. But there was something about the stories they shared that made me feel like I could relate to so many of these people who had become influential and impactful to many. I started to believe I could transform myself. My health, my body, my mind. Everything.
It helped me tap into a long lost power that had always resided within me this whole time.
The power to decide.
To cut off all other options, as Robbins famously puts it.
What put further fuel to the fire was coming across the Invictus poem by William Ernest Henley enclosed in Hill’s Think & Grow Rich where it stated:
“I am the master of my fate, the captain of my soul.”
This line became my new mantra.
No longer would I allow myself to let others dictate the direction of my life. More and more I built a newfound relationship with myself. I walked, journaled, meditated, exercised, and studied nutrition. I couldn’t help but begin eating higher quality food.
This time it was because I wanted to. Not because I had a desire to lose weight but because I finally felt that I truly deserved it. A feeling no diet could ever give me.
I deserved to feel energetic, strong, flexible, balanced and healthy. I deserved to discover my passion, find my truth, walk my own path and reach my highest potential. I deserved to put only good food into my body. I deserved to finally feel confident about my own body.
I decided to never settle for mediocrity.
And that was the real turning point from dieting to a lasting shift in my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being.
No system, strategy, pill, potion, or diet guide will work unless you cultivate your self love, find self worth and learn to accept yourself.
Let go of what everyone else wants for you. Their false mythologies of what a good body, good job, or good life does not serve you.
Find new definitions within your self. Live from that place.
The only opinion, judgments and thoughts that matter are the one’s you have for your self.
When you live with awareness, love, and compassion for your self and have purpose, passion and inspiration behind you, you can’t help but do good things for your mind, body and soul.
You will have less and less desire for the crappy food, negative people and toxic environments that don’t nourish you.
Now when I come across photos of myself, staring back at me is not someone with a perfect body or a finished product, but someone I’m finally proud to be. Yes, a work in progress. But gladly embarking on a lifelong journey towards health and well being.
Happy for the choices I’ve made. And happy to just be me.
** Join me this evening in Mississauga for my Monthly Meetup group. Tonight’s Topic – The Transformational Power of Your Story. Plus, we have a special guest speaker! Click HERE for more info and Join us! Would love to see you there 🙂
** If your ready to lose the weight and gain back your health, email Samantha Gladish at – firstname.lastname@example.org and reserve your spot in her Metabolic Weight Loss Program. No pills, no shakes, just real whole foods and REAL results.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Oliver Manalese
Oliver coaches and guides people in their personal awareness, growth and transformation. He is the founder of Integrated Self, a workshop series for self-explorers, a singer-songwriter as well as a certified yoga instructor. In between writing, coaching sessions and making music, Oliver spends the rest of his time enjoying the good life with his love Janet, eating gorgeous food, sipping espressos and travelling. For more, go to: www.olivermanalese.com