Why The Comment, “You Look Skinny” Is No Longer A Compliment To Me
It used to make me feel so good about myself when people told me I was thin or looked skinny. It boosted my self-esteem when people praised me on my physique and fitness level. During that time I based my worth on what my body looked like, the number on the scale and how “fit” I was.
I put fit in quotations because I might have been fast and good at working out a lot, but I was also quite unhealthy which to me doesn’t equate to real fitness. It wouldn’t come as a surprise that I exercised hours a day and restricted what I ate to try to maintain a skinny figure. The thing is I know what it takes for me to lose weight and how it affects my health.
It means not nourishing my body with the nutrition it needs and becoming deficient in nutrients as well as negatively affecting my hormonal health. Learning that was the first step that made me realize that being skinny wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. I mean I had the hormone levels of a post-menopausal woman at the age of 25 and no sex drive, so you tell how fun that sounds? That’s what I thought!
And know when I say this I’m talking about my body being skinny and not in any way am I trying to cut down anyone else that is considered skinny. Thin is subjective anyways and technically I have thin privilege but for me I’ve weighed 45lbs less than I do now and I consider that lighter version of myself to be skinny.
The version of myself now has body fat and muscle, so when people tell me I look skinny I almost look at them cross eyed. To me skinny was the skin and bones shell of a body that I use to live in but like I said it’s all subjective anyways.
At some point I finally realized that my worth actually had nothing to do with my physical body. Having more junk in my trunk didn’t suddenly make me less worthy. I also know that being thin didn’t suddenly give me confidence or make me love my body either. Both of those things come from within, as cliche as that sounds.
It’s also not an insult when someone tells me I look thin. Some might think that, as I like lifting heavy and building muscle but I’m really not that big of a meathead. The truth is I actually feel quite neutral when people make comments about my body. This is because their opinion means nothing to me anymore. This would go for any comment and not just that I look skinny.
You look fat. You look toned. You look lean, You look bulky. You look buff. You look soft. All these comments mean nothing to me. What matters is my own opinion about my body and over the years I’ve worked hard to love it. I think my body is strong but it’s also soft and feminine.
And what’s more, what’s inside my beautiful body is more important. Our hearts, our souls and our minds can be beautiful, vibrant, wild and gentle yet strong parts of us that we ignore. If you are affected by others comments about your body, whether they upset you or make you feel good, ask yourself if you’re putting too much weight on their opinions. Often we are and trust me it’s still something I have to check myself at the door with at times.
How do you stop letting other’s opinions about your body affect you anyway? I suggest starting with working on your own relationship with your body. As you build self love and confidence others opinions will stop mattering.
Also stop consuming media and external messages that tell you what your body should look like. Become aware of this messaging and start unfollowing pages or people and choose body positive people or pages to replace them with. Stop buying crap magazines that tell you you’re not good enough and need to do a 14 day detox or 7 day bikini bootcamp to get ready for summer.
Start doing things that get you into your body and make you feel good, whether that’s yoga, dancing or walking outdoors. When you shift into focusing on how you feel over how you look, you’ll naturally start to feel better in your body. A soothing restorative yoga class does wonders for me, whereas a kickass 60 minute interval bootcamp makes me feel wired and not so good.
Lastly practice makes perfect and getting good at anything takes time. Just don’t give up. Keep working on building that loving relationship with your body and you’ll get there too. This is Why The Comment, “You Look Skinny” Is No Longer A Compliment To Me.