Let’s all try a little kindness this summer
I am going to get very real with my female readers for my article this week.
This has been a year of soul searching, not only mentally but physically. I have become more gentle with my workouts. I care less about being “perfect” and more about being in the moment.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not perfect. Some days I hate my body. I beat myself up over eating foods that I love (hello mac and cheese).
Some days I hate the cellulite on my thighs, my stretch marks and the rolls that form over my tummy when I sit down.
Every year, as spring arrives and the first boat or beach day has been planned, there is an overall shift as to how we talk about ourselves: my dieting begins (or has already started). I start to inspect my body, grabbing my thighs and tummy, searching for my flaws. “Just X more pounds until I am happy.” Sound familiar?
I am lucky enough to be surrounded by such inspiring, beautiful, strong females. They are all intelligent, compassionate, strong and absolutely stunning. Even though I think they are all perfect in their own bodies, they all have said ugly things about their own bodies at some point.
Would we say the things we say about our bodies to our mothers, daughters, best friends or even our worst enemies?
During my lead up to Carnival last year, I was the “fittest” I have ever been. I worked out every day. I ate clean. I had a six-pack for the first time. I was 10 pounds lighter than what I am now, but still somehow thought I was “fat”.
Even at my “best”, I was still not enough for myself.
This seems to be a reoccurring theme with so many women I talk to. We are so quick to be cruel to ourselves (or even to other women) that we don’t see how capable, strong or how far we have come.
This summer, I challenge the women of Bermuda. First, I challenge us to be kinder to each other. Compliment each other, encourage each other, lift each other up. The second is a little harder. I challenge the women of Bermuda to be kinder to ourselves. Allow yourself to mess up.
We aren’t perfect, but who is? When did perfection become the standard?
Even top athletes have cellulite and stretch marks. Who really decided that a little extra jiggle was a bad thing?
Instead of a number on the scale, let’s change our benchmarks for success. Are you healthy? Are you trying your best? Are you being gentle with yourself? This year, if you see me at Bermuda Carnival, I hope you will dance alongside me, jiggle and all.
* Cassandra Matcham is a Yoga Alliance-certified yoga instructor, studio and group fitness manager at Alchemy Fitness. She specialises in accountability and goal-setting to help clients reach their full potential. Follow Alchemy Fitness on Facebook: AlchemyFitnessBermuda or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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