About a month ago I was at yoga, starting off in downward dog. Anytime I go upside down in class my loose and flowy shirts ride up to my neck and it feels weird (ever have that happen?), so I like to tuck them in. But this particular class I was like, “whatever”.
So I was in downward dog, shirt at my neck (no joke), with my stomach and sports bra just hanging out, and all of a sudden I realized... I didn't care.
I didn't care that my fair-skinned stomach rolls were hanging out of my yoga pants. No shirt to cover them up, just there. They’re supposed to be there. And I started to tear up and feel this deep sense of gratitude for how far I've come.
This is how my body looks when I’m eating intuitively, AKA giving my body what it needs. Tuning in and really listening to what I’m craving and desiring. Sometimes it’s a salad, sometimes it’s a doughnut (sometimes a salad followed by a doughnut ;) ) And this is when I’m happiest.
But not too long ago I used to pinch my stomach fat, using it as a measure to see how much I should eat that day. More to pinch = less to eat. I’d suck in my stomach anytime I was in public and would only wear high-rise yoga pants so my stomach looked flat if my shirt rode up.
I know, what the F.
Yet this thought process is way more common than we might think. The self-destructive mental chatter takes place all the time:
“I shouldn’t eat this piece of cake because it’ll make me fat.”
‘I shouldn’t wear a crop top because I’m not a size 2.”
“I'm working out because I ate ice cream last night.”
Actually, all of that is bullshit and you can eat/do/say/feel/think whatever you want.
How freeing is that?!
Imagine what it would feel like to eat according to what your body wants, not subscribing to a certain “diet” or way of living and leaving guilt behind?
Loving or accepting your body because you choose to? Not because a stupid magazine told you your body is beautiful if you have abs and a thigh gap?
It took me lots of trial, error and struggle to get to this point, but I truly love these rolls of mine. Not to mention my fair skin that rarely tans, the cellulite on my butt and muscular thighs. It's what makes me ME.
Every body is beautiful, no questions asked.
Tuning into our bodies and trusting it knows what it needs is so amazing, too. Because it’s true: our bodies are so wise. They know how to strike a natural balance around food, if we let them. Practicing this is what finally got me through a long period of disordered eating and helped to ease intense anxiety around food.
Tuning into our bodies also falls under the powerful practice of “intuitive living”. What I mean is letting our intuition be the guiding force in our lives. Those gut feelings. That little voice inside that knows what’s best for us, even if it’s often ignored.
Listening to my inner Cameron is what got me through taking a leave from college, finding my way out of a miserable career path, letting go of toxic relationships, moving through depression and anxiety, and so much more.
It's allowed me to step into my light, my true self.
So how do you start to tune in and live more in line with that inner voice?
THIS is what a huge part of my work is about, so stay tuned for weekly posts exploring what it actually means.