#BodyPositivity, In My Opinion

#BodyPositivity, In My Opinion

I’ve been reading a lot of writing by the “body-positive” (or the tryna-be-body-positive) community about what it is to be body positive. I have experience and a perspective on this topic, shaped by the times: When, as a child, I got comments about what I was eating, in comparison to everyone else. When, as a child, I had to justify why I was eating a piece of cake at a birthday party. When I was told that I could not wear red because of my size. When the word “fat” was used in reference to me, with disdain. When I’ve been asked if I thought I needed to lose weight. When I dated him, and him, and him, and they all told me how beautiful I’d be if I lost weight. When people questioned how hard it must have been to be me, in comparison to my skinny mother. When I bought a wedding dress and was told that the empire waisted gown was best, despite the obvious uni-boob. When I eventually bought the slim fitting fit-and-flare gown. When he told me that he wouldn’t marry me until I lost weight. When he told me that his mother told him to never bring home a fat girl. When he cheated. When I read the email he sent to the girl he cheated with, telling her that she needed to lose weight for their relationship to develop. When I determined that if I was not good enough for him to marry as a fat person, then he was not good enough for me, period. When I began using affirmations daily, like, “My...
My dissent to this condition. #blacklivesmatter #getupstandup

My dissent to this condition. #blacklivesmatter #getupstandup

We all matter. We are loved by some, by many. This is a given. But when you live in a world that tells you in so many ways that because of who you are, you don’t matter – not as much as another group – you have to have to have to have to have to insist that you are HERE and you mean as much as anyone else. You matter and you deserve basic respect. You matter. I matter. Black Lives Matter and it HURTS that we are subjected to a system that tries to tell us otherwise. It HURTS so bad that some of my skinfolk say to others, “well, if you only just [whatever] you wouldn’t get into trouble.” If we only were just not hued in blackness and brownness. If we only didn’t intimidate the shit out of some others. If only our might did not pose such a threat to the system of white supremacy in which we live. We’d live. Trayvon would live. Tamir would live. Sandra would live. Alton would live. And if you wonder why Black people celebrate ourselves so much? Why we gotta make statements like “Black Lives Matter” and “Black Girls Rock” and so on? If you truly wonder about these things then you are ignorant to the origin of the country, when we legally were not whole humans, and the legacy this has left us. A legacy where we still, within ourselves, have to make up for being broken down over many generations – a legacy that causes us to have to remind the rest of you too that WE ARE WHOLE DAMN HUMANS AND WE ARE WORTHY OF LOVE AND RESPECT. Also you might be asleep to the direct...
Big or small?

Big or small?

I was just reading this really inspiring piece on Forbes about Nely Galán (gotta check out her book!) and while inspired, it hit me: Why is it that, on the one hand, I keep being told to “Lean In” and “Go Big” in my career, but told in my love life to play it small? As I considered this, I googled “How to Get a Man” and a brief perusal confirmed the message I’ve been getting for all of my life: as a heterosexual single woman, I am supposed to play a game of sorts to “get” a guy. Playing games, manipulation, to me is “small” and frustrating in comparison to leaning in/going “big.” Funny enough, in my perusal of Google results I came across this gem from Cosmopolitan: to get a guy to like me, I should “be busy sometimes.” Thanks Cosmo! Because if I wasn’t a straight single female interested in dating I’d have no reason to pursue a life, right? Right. That piece of (ridiculous!) advice reminded me of so many convos I’ve had with my similarly careered up girlfriends about dating, relationships and our careers. Being high-powered, or even perceived that way, can be an impediment to the development of some relationships. I have friends who have downplayed their careers and successes to “support” their relationship with a guy. I have never felt any pressure to downplay my career, but I’ve encountered men who, when hearing I’m an attorney, get put off. Now I’ve also dated plenty of men who had no issues with my career and its successes; being an attorney can be very attractive to...
From the bottom of my always-a-fat-girl heart:

From the bottom of my always-a-fat-girl heart:

I used to really feel that I was alone in my always-a-fat-girlness. And always-a-fat-girlness isn’t simply about how big I’ve always been. It’s a mindset, more than anything else. And a mindset that’s been set for years and years of messages, at home, in the world, in the media, etc. that the body I occupy was not good enough, and thus, I was not. Please believe me when I tell you that being told constantly that you are not good enough to be simply because you are how you are is a tremendous mind fuck. Add to that being a baby. And then a toddler. And then a young girl. And then a young lady. And then ultimately a thirty-something lady. Compounded over the years, the message has been digested. It has made me who I am. And yes, I get that the messages come from other people’s projections of me – their own insecurities, whatever. Not to be taken personally. I get that. But fuck. And I get that all kinds of people are given the same message, fat or not. I get that too. But this is about me and my shit. And my shit is rooted in the always-a-fat-girlness. In the “oh you’d be so pretty if you lost X lbs”-ness. In the “I won’t marry you unless you’re a size 12”-ness (yes, this was my life at a time). (That last part, by the way, is why I haven’t written or coached in some time. Because I had to let go of him, heal from him, and heal from all the shit that led me...
You did great!

You did great!

Regardless of how the year went, take stock today of the good you accomplished this year.  Tomorrow’s a new year but it is also another new day – a new opportunity to try something you’ve never tried, an opportunity to do something you’ve never done. After taking stock today, start to plan (if you haven’t yet) for your vision of 2015. Thanks for reading, supporting, and sharing what you’ve read here, on Facebook and Instagram. More great things to come in 2015, including support in planning for your 2015 vision!...
7 Reasons Why You Should Make The Effort to Change.

7 Reasons Why You Should Make The Effort to Change.

You are worth the effort and the time it takes to do as well as possible in life. In case you aren’t convinced, here are seven reasons why you should undergo the work it takes to change. 1. You’re not satisfied with the current state of your life. If there’s something in your life you aren’t happy with, no one else is more equipped to change that thing but you! Plan and simple in concept, even though not necessarily in execution. 2. You can do better in life for the change. Hopefully, you are looking to change for the better. If you follow through and make needed lifestyle changes, your life will be better overall for the change. 3. You can inspire others to change.  People tend to respond very well to images. Whether or not you’re aware, you are already providing an “image” of your life to those around you, and that image can inspire. If you live your life in a way that another person aspires to live, you can inspire their change! Just by doing what it takes to do better, you pave the way for others to do better. 4. Your changes will improve your relationships.  The change you need might be in the interest of your relationships. What you do impacts everyone in your life. Working on your progression and expansion individually will impact your relationships. It’ll either help them appreciate you more, or show you the need to let go of those relationships. 5. Change is adventurous! If you’re seeking some adventure, there’s no better way to get that than by embarking on...
Better than an ice cream sandwich. #NewNovember

Better than an ice cream sandwich. #NewNovember

Yesterday I had an intense sugar craving. I ate pretty well but my body kept calling for sugar, and I answered with one of these ice cream sandwiches. While eating the sandwich I questioned the purpose of the craving. Although what we crave might not be “necessary,” a craving signals that you’re in need of something. Maybe it’s a nutrient: for example, if you’re a lady, PMSing, and craving chocolate, you might be in need of magnesium (if this happens, try a small serving of  raw cashews and see how it does the trick!). But maybe it’s an emotional need. After questioning and eating my ice cream sandwich, I meditated. (Meditation’s a great way to get answers to questions that only lie within. And the answer I got was… I’ve been feeling insecure, and using sugar as a security blanket.   Ugh. I remembered the times in my childhood when I experienced actual danger, such as when I got hit by a car at 8 years old. I remember wanting to eat all things sweet after I got home from the hospital (mildly injured  but shaken up, by the way).  I am sure that the association between sugar and security started way before that, but it was the first time I’m aware of that the sugar craving was INTENSE! Next week will make 24 years since that happened, and to celebrate I think this security blanket should go. Ice cream sandwiches are great, but they do not protect me from experiencing pain or danger. So what’s better than an ice cream sandwich? Faith that the universe supports me. Knowledge that all is well. Belief that, even...
Jumping.

Jumping.

Over on Instagram, I’ve been participating in Gala Darling‘s #lovetober photo challenge. The prompt for today was, “Jump!” I could have (and probably should have) taken a photo of me jumping, posted and kept it moving. But I’m under the weather, in no mood to physically jump and pose for a photo. So instead I’m using this as a blog prompt, because “jumping” is so relevant to my life right now. So there have been various  times in my life when the decision to jump was before me, and I took it. For example, when I decided to go from artsy English major to artsy law student, the decision was a jump. When I bought my first LSAT prep book, I jumped off the cliff, and found wings that brought me to my life as an attorney. When I was at a cliff again, staring down at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and a career in coaching on the other side. I jumped, eventually. I stood at the cliff for about two years before I signed up for their health coaching program. This website and my business as it now exists started with a jump towards my dreams. The “jump” prompt is poignant because I’m at a big cliff right now. On the other side of the cliff is practicing in areas of law that are extremely different than what I’m used to. On the other side of this cliff is a rebranding of this coaching business I’ve started, and program ideas that I want to launch, and more speaking opportunities. I’ve spent the day recuperating from illness and contemplating what it means...
Take a deep breath. #meditation

Take a deep breath. #meditation

  I just had a moment of panic. Someone important to me doesn’t approve of me in some way. The way they don’t approve doesn’t matter in the long run (or even in the short run) but still, she’s important to me, so it matters. I had a moment of panic. It happens, and not too often. But when it does happen… I take a deep breath. Air flows in through my nose, deeply through the lungs, into the diaphragm, and then up and out through the mouth. I remember that, yes, I still have breath. I still am here. Whatever’s wrong is not so wrong because I am here. And I am still. I tagged this #meditation because my meditation practice taught me how to come down from panic to stillness in less than a minute. No crossed legs and fingers touching. Just stop, and breathe. If you’ve read this far, and you don’t have a meditation practice, go here. Also join my meditation challenge,...
Join the Summer Shine! #Meditation Challenge

Join the Summer Shine! #Meditation Challenge

  There will be music and mantras. Bob Marley, and OMs. There will be sounds of nature. Raindrops and rainforests. There will be centeredness. There will be inner stillness. There will be peace. Starting on Sunday, July 6, I’ll be sharing my favorite meditation audios and videos everyday, for 30 days. The challenge is to use that audio or video and meditate everyday. The meditation audios/videos range in time, from a minute to about a half-hour. You’ll get a heads up in advance about the expected length of the week’s meditations. You are encouraged to use the shorter meditations if time doesn’t permit for the longer ones. You are encouraged to give the longer meditations a go! If you take the challenge, you’re very likely to gain a habit of finding stillness and centeredness. You will gain the ability to rein in your experiences with stress and anxiety. Commit to this challenge, and it’s quite possible that you will begin to experience a slice of serenity in your otherwise busy day. Commit, and get a taste of what meditation has to offer. Provide your email below, and/or like me on Facebook and follow along there. Summer Shine! Meditation Challenge * indicates required Email Address * First Name * Email Format html text...