Rethinking Valentine’s Day
I hope you believe me when I tell you that I honestly do not celebrate Valentine’s Day.
It seems to be a big thing in the West and I simply come from the culture where we did not have it. Even three decades of living in the UK did not get me “into it!”, although, one of the reasons for that may be that I married someone who comes from the same part of the world.
Saying all that, I think it is a wonderful thing to celebrate love.
We can only thrive when surrounded by love regardless of age.
They say that everything we do is out of the two basic emotions (and hundreds, if not thousands, of shades of each in between) – Love & Fear. Only those two.
What is also true is that – to be able to accept & give love, we need to first find it within ourselves.
This is very similar to having gratitude for what we already have – for more of the good stuff that we love, appreciate and desire to be able to show up in our world.
Which is why I wish to rethink Valentine’s Day and our quest for love and re-frame it in the context of health.
In my years of working with clients, nearly two decades now, helping them become better versions of themselves, one is for sure:
Being slimmer and appearing healthier does not necessarily mean we are any happier.
It is only when healthier body is achieved through love for themselves that serves a higher purpose – that the results & habits stick and become a sustainable, long term affair a way of life.
Of course, this is easier said than done as it is as complicated issue as it gets, but this kind of quest for love will bring much more fruits in the long run.
It may come as a surprise to you, but when we do not love ourselves, when we think that we are not enough and/ or even hate our bodies and the way we are – science shows us that those emotions send such powerful stress signals to our bodies and the following happens:
- Stress increases our cortisol levels priming body to store fat,
- Our body fat & body weight increase,
- Food digestion & nutrient absorption is compromised
- Body is not efficient at building or maintaining lean muscle,
- Our metabolism decreases, and more…
This is the very reason why they say that “diet’s don’t work”!
I would argue and say – every diet works, however, not ever diet is healthy (in a “way of life” concept that I believe our criteria for a diet should be), and no diet, not a single one, will ever work long term until you start working harder on yourself than on your diet.
Furthermore, diets can only create more issues, more stress and anxiety that perpetuate the above metabolic issues, if we leave underlying issues undealt with, unresolved and bottled up.
Whatever the reason or trauma for our relationship with our bodies and food, until we heal those hurts, nothing will improve long term.
So, this Valentines and beyond, go on a path of learning to love yourself first so you can heal and find your first love – YOU – which then allows love to find us…
One of the first steps to take is to notice the language you use to describe yourself and your body – what stands after “I AM…” is what becomes us.
Working on your relationship with yourself is the most important work you will ever do and, if you want to go further – seek support. It is worth the journey!
You re a gift, you are enough and, with a love like that – everything is possible – love, health and happiness…
You are worth it!
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Yours in Health,