“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

I’ve been struggling with my weight – or rather, my body image – for as long as I can remember. Over the years, I’ve gone through every possible diet and healthy eating plan, only to find myself back at square one.

What’s worse, my weight seems to be inversely proportional to my self-worth. So, when I stepped on the scale the other morning – after a few days of self-indulgence – the number I saw terrorised me once more .

The year started off right: I was monitoring my portions, avoiding unhealthy habits and exercising regularly. However, last week turned out to be particularly stressful at work, so I spent the weekend “recovering”.

The next day, I was ready to pick up where I’d left off, but then I started wondering: when will it end? Will I ever be enough, happy with what I see in the mirror? Jie can I stop judging myself based on my appearance?

Last year I was pretty close to committing to a plastic surgery which I had been dreaming of since I was a teen. Back then, I’d been told I should wait until I’m 30 – and there I was, nearly 31 now, struggling with the same insecurities.

It’s almost like I haven’t made any progress, striving for that same unachievable standard of perfection I’ve been chasing almost my entire life. The good news is that I’m slowly getting tired of feeling that way.

The bad news, however, is that I see the same insecurities in all women around me – the smart, accomplished girls who celebrate every kilo lost and fat-shame themselves and one another for every gram gained.

What’s the solution? How can we move from self-loath to self-love and from self-criticism to self-compassion? Is it possible to unlearn the old patterns, rewire our brain to think and see differently?

Right now, I’m dealing with the classic yo-yo effect, bouncing between occasionally appreciating my body and trying to correct it – still feeling that familiar sense of relief when someone tells me I’ve lost weight.

Is it even possible to erase the weight goal from my mind? To balance the physical and emotional health at the same time? To finally disconnect the concepts of weight-loss and self-worth, once and for all?

The mere possibility of getting there feels unrealistic, out of reach. Still, the awareness and willingness to relate to my body differently and to discover myself through a new lens is there – stronger and brighter than ever before.


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