Tuesday, February 7, 2012

False Idols

Visualization and positive mantras have given people the power to overcome self-defeating thoughts. Imagine getting ready for a big exam – if you continue to tell yourself “I’m not smart enough” or “The teacher was too hard, I don’t really care if I fail anyways,” then you’ve already lost. With positive thinking people can change their realities into more positive experiences and outcomes. If we are what we eat, then perhaps we are what we think.

Beauty Then....and Now

I feel women need to develop a healthy relationship with our bodies and with food….we can do this by learning to tune out the constant negative messages from the media. There is a wonderful picture I came across recently showing several images of Marilyn Monroe and other “fuller figured” beauties of the 1940’s and 50’s. Above them are images of stick-thin actresses of today in bikinis on the beach. The caption reads something like, “Beauty then and now- what’s wrong with us?” When you place Marilyn Monroe’s gorgeous curves besides a rail-thin, so-called “beauty” of today it truly sends home a message. What is wrong with us?

We have been so inundated with ideas of visual imagery of famous women with flat chests, scrawny arms and protruding chest and hip bones that we have literally been brainwashed into a false concept of the female body. And it’s disturbing.

It is imperative that we understand what healthy and beautiful truly mean.  It is a waste of time and energy to pursue the impossible, and albeit unhealthy, concepts of what we want ourselves to look like. There are too many women who have starved themselves for days, denied themselves meals and beat themselves up mentally over the media’s bombardment of false imagery.

This may mean a redesigning of your goals. In your mind, you may have to change what you visualize your healthy self to be and look like. Remember; it is just as threatening to your health to be too thin and malnourished as it is to be overweight and not fit.

Visualize what you see yourself as having the perfect body. Don’t use a Victoria’s Secret model or some girl from the gym with impossibly perfect legs. Mentally envision you- and transform yourself into the body you want. What you see yourself as being happiest with. Close your eyes and focus on this image everyday for a few minutes. By doing this, you can keep your goal in mind. When you’re running and out of breath, when you’re biking up that hill and want to give up, visualize the legs you want to have. Pick up that dumbbell and as you curl, see your arms becoming toned. When you crave an afternoon sugar-high and reach for a banana and not a cookie or candy bar, tell yourself that this is nourishing and healthy- that this is what will get you towards your goal.

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Hi! I 'm Karlene Murphy. A lover of food (especially if it's gluten and dairy free!), getting outdoors, lifting weights, travel, writing, and snuggling with my two puppies. My addictions include chocolate, coffee, cookies, and sharing my love of being HAPPY and HEALTHY! My passion is educating others - whether at my full time job as a high school Psychology teacher, or with YOU my readers. I have been in the fitness wold for almost 10 years, and currently am an Online Fitness Coach, Fitness Instructor, Pilates and Yoga and Aerial Yoga Instructor in Southern New Hampshire. Contact Me if you need help with designing your own fitness and nutrition program.

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