Because it’s the beginning of a new year, we’re all in the same boat.
You might be wondering: What boat is that?
We’re all in the boat where we’re visually assaulted by ads telling us one message. This message can be subtle, and it is very toxic for us. It looks like this: Join the gym for $1 this month! It looks like the ads on Instagram that told me four times today to set resolutions.
Do you know what the not-so-subtle message is?
There’s something wrong with you.
When you resolve to do better, you’ll fix what’s wrong with you (too fat? too poor? too alone?), and then, you’ll be happy.
You know that is all just marketing, right? The promise that happiness lies in the fulfillment of a New Year’s resolution has never delivered. Think of every year in the past – if one of those attempts had succeeded, you wouldn’t be here, right now. It’s a marketing strategy, and it works becuase it plays on our deep fears about our own inadequacy, of not being good enough.
It’s time to take our power back. Especially right now, at the beginning of a New Year.
Especially when it comes to our bodies.
Especially because there is nothing wrong with you.
To want to feel good in our own skin is valid. To feel tired of obsessing over food is very legitimate. But for someone else to tell us how we should look? That is very not cool.
Because we all know how to eat healthy foods and move more, so selling us something that helps us to try harder isn’t useful. Our willpower is not the problem. The problem is that the food is not the problem.
A food-based solution like a new diet, to a problem that looks like a food problem, but isn’t a food problem at all, gets us nowhere. Einstein said it best: “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
Thinking differently or better about food is trying to solve our problems with the same food-focused thinking that created them.
Instead of going down this way, this year, it’s time to elevate.
To solve a problem, we have to know what it is, first. If the weight struggle and the eating-obsessions have nothing to do with food, then we have to find out what the problem causing our compulsion really is.
Because, there’s a cause, and there’s a solution. And we’re capable of finding both.
We’re either going up, or we’re going down.
I for one am going up. I’m going to elevate.
For about three months, I’ve been waist-deep in the concept of sovereignty.
Sovereignty is kind of like healthy boundaries, good communication, and the right-to-exist, all in one, glorious bundle.
When it comes to our bodies, sovereignty means that our bodies are our own kingdoms, and no one else’s. What I do, or don’t do, with my body is none of your concern.
Sovereignty is not, off with your head! power, like the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland.
Sovereignty is: you don’t get to imply that I should want to look differently than I do – but it’s okay if I do want that. I’m responsible for the condition of my body, and how and what I feed myself is none of your business.
This body is my body.
This is my kingdom.
And I am sovereign.
To be sovereign, we get rid of opinions, projections, expectations and assumptions about our bodies that are not ours.
And then, we embrace (and find) the opinions, desires, wishes, hopes and dreams that are ours.
And from there (and only from there) do we set our intentions, our resolutions, for 2017, for ourselves.
To elevate, we learn to practice sovereignty.
We learn to reject the messages from the media about what we should look like.
We find a new beginning with our bodies for ourselves, where we learn how to listen, communicate, respond, and support. We elevate. And from that place we find true health. We find true love. We find freedom.