This is a bit of a different topic for my blog but it's been playing on my mind recently.
Everyday we are shown images of models and celebrities with perfect photoshopped bodies or we are shown unphotoshopped images with mocking titles and comments. Is this normal? Is this acceptable? Should we really be made to feel bad about our size and weight?
Thanks to my anxiety and panic attack issues I gained weight - seriously, one day I woke up and decided it wasn't how I wanted to live so I changed it.
I still haven't reached the end of my weight loss journey, I'm still aiming for a few more stone but I wanted to know has it actually made me any happier?
Is worrying about what I eat because I don't want to get 'fat' really worth all the hassle? Has it made me more confident? Did I do it for me or because of how others judged me?
Personally, when I was that big it didn't really bother me all too much. I still had an active social life, awesome friends and a great boyfriend, so why did I bother?
My whole journey started when I was at the end of my wits with being house bound due to panic attacks and anxiety and I took the first big step and went to CBT. I used to use food as a safety blanket and because I couldn't do anything else, I turned to food. I would look at other peoples life via social media and be filled with jealousy that people my age were doing things that I couldn't.
Once I was over the worst of it all, I joined Slimming World. Now this is where the lines get slightly blurry.
When I did go out I noticed people would stare at me because of my size, I would be super self concious. I'd go into shops and nothing would fit me, I couldn't really exercise because I'd get out of breath so quickly and I had started to stop breathing in my sleep because of the weight on my chest.
I'd look at pictures of girls in Glamour and Cosmo and feel so revolting compared to them, clothes just never fit me right and no matter what photo I saw of myself, I couldn't see past the double chin.
I'd say I lost the weight for me. I wanted to be able to go shopping and fit into clothes, I didn't want to be the biggest one out of my friends, I didn't want people to stare at me in the street and I didn't want to feel so self concious all the time.
8 and a bit stone later, I do have more energy, I'm more confident, I fit into pretty much whatever I want, I don't hate every photo of myself and I don't have a double chin.
Now with all this said. I'm still not 100% happy.
I still don't like the way my body looks and I still want to loose more weight. So are we just hard wired to be obsessed with wanting a perfect body?
My aim is to be a size 12/14, I'm currently an 18. In today's society I am plus sized, and this got me thinking.
Am I really happier worrying over food, instead of just eating what I fancy and dealing with it? I'm not entirely sure. I love being able to walk into a shop and purchase clothes, I also love having more energy and feeling better but I'm not sure it's actually made me any happier as a person.
The UK average is a size 16, so why are women over a 14 branded as plus sized?
Is it to make us feel bad about ourselves? Is it to encourage us to eat more healthy? Will I be happier once I hit my goal weight, or will I still forever be lusting over a better body?
Are we obsessed with loosing weight? It doesn't matter what magazine or website you look to, from Slimming World to Juice Plus, diets are everywhere. Telling you this is the diet if you want that 'summer body' with a picture of a photoshopped model in a bikini. Why can't we have gorgeous unphotoshopped models regardless of their size, owning the beach in their bikini's instead?
Faz from Living Like A Parisienne says ' I recently made some healthy changes in my life and I've found there are really negative connotations with the word 'diet'. People automatically assume you're on a fad diet, imitating a celebrity and while I'm sure there are people who do that, it's frustrating when people jump to that conclusion. I'm just there waiting for the lecture to finish so I can say "No, I mean I just eat my 5 a day now!" Or worse, it escalates and they assume you're only trying to be 'skinny like the models'. No! I'm doing this for me, so my body looks like a better version of itself and for the long term benefits. Get real!'
Daisie from Cerysmai says 'My ex was a personal trainer and tried to convince me that everyone needs to lose weight to make themselves the best possible person they can be. Since I was very comfortable with my weight at the time that actually shook my confidence pretty bad even though I was a size 10 ! I will never lose weight if a guy tells me to. I will when/if I want to!'
Joski from Joski Bryne says 'Only when we stop measuring our self worth in terms of numbers on a scale or tape measure will we begin to find true happiness. I am guilty of this myself and it has never led me anywhere but to self doubt and self loathing'
Paloa from My Unsettling Life says 'People seem to want to loose weight to be someone else, when it should be because you need it or want to be a healthier version of yourself. If you eat healthy, giving your body all the nutrients it needs to function, and exercise regularly, then you are simply doing what your body was designed to do.'
Laura from Moogy Pops says 'The amount of angles that weight loss is being flung at people right now is unbelievable. If it's not celebrities promoting their latest quick fix DVD or sharing snaps of detox products that they are clearly not using but being paid to promote its TV shows crowning people who lose drastic amounts of weight the quickest 'winners'. The worst of it is that I like many others have bought into it - ive drank the shakes, done the DVDs and cheered on people competing to lose weight. I'm still classed as 'overweight' im just poorer now.'
Chloe from Chloe Paigee says 'I definitely think society is very focused on weight loss. There are so many weight loss advertisements lurking around all over social media. Most of these are really unhealthy fad diets, but I do feel that people don't know enough about nutrition to be able to see that.
I always find myself looking at models and comparing myself to them. I even find myself getting mad about the mannequins in shops due to the fact that they are (for many people) so unrealistically skinny, and can promote very unhealthy figures. I get very annoyed about how models have to be so tiny when the average size in the UK is actually 16. Not to say that thin people are 'unhealthy' or anything negative, but there should be a range of sizes in the model industry, not just the size 4-6.
Personally, I am very far from being happy with myself. It has been a long fight for me to get to where I am now confidence wise, but I am still a very long way off of being content with my body. Models and the fashion industry have a massive impact on me. I do think that if the models were a more average size, people wouldn't worry as much about the way they looked and how they weren't the 'perfect size 6'. I think showing models who are happy at a larger size than normal could benefit many people. I fear for out future generations if models continue to be portrayed how they are today.'
Overall I would say I am happier but I think the obsession with fat shaming and weight loss has got to stop.
You get one body, one life and unless you want to change it everyone should simply sod off.
No matter if your a size 0 or a size 30, if your happy, own it. Everyone should channel their inner Beyonce and remember that your size doesn't define you as a person and there is more to life than having a perfect body.
What are your views? I'd love to hear them.
Until next time,