Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Happiness vs Weight Loss and Fitness--Which Comes First?

Following up on yesterday's post about the link to happiness and weight loss success, I received a comment:
Being fit and attractive is a great benefit to your happiness.
While I don't exactly disagree with this...everything else being equal (which it isn't...but for the sake of argument...) of course we would be happier as fit and attractive people than if we are out of shape slobs...

The thing is, that being "fit and attractive" is no guarantee of happiness! Just ask the myriad of celebrities and models, considered to be among the most attractive how they feel. Being "attractive" is a completely subjective thing...and it doesn't really matter if other people find you attractive if you feel like you are anything but.

What I have learned is that when we are happy then we learn to love ourselves...all of us...include our limitations, "flaws", weaknesses, and yes, even our big noses and thighs and cellulite. When we can do that...scratch that...when we can BE that person...then we are attractive from the inside out. We take care of our bodies because we WANT to. We eat foods that nourish us, that give our bodies the energy, vitamins and minerals we need...AND the taste sensations that please us.

This creates a wonderful cycle...because by eating better and moving our bodies we set up a fantastic chemical reaction within our bodies and we feel better. We feel better so we care for our bodies. We care for our bodies and we feel better.

I've tried to use getting fit as my goal...saying that I would be happy when I lost "x" pounds (10 or 20 or 100...depending on where I was in my life.) But that never worked for me.

If you are not happy NOW the chances are you will not be happy "if/when." Instead IF you do lose the excess weight you will just find something else to be unhappy about.

If you decide to have a specific weight or size (or physical fitness level) be a requirement for you happiness then you are setting up yourself for a sad and sorry life. If you don't figure out why you are really unhappy you will just remain fat--as your safe excuse for being unhappy.

Instead of waiting for "xyz" event--make a choice to be happy now. Why miss out on the beautiful things life has to offer to you just because you aren't perfect? And why deprive the world of your light just because you don't see yourself as perfect?

My goal is to be the happy person first. I firmly believe that when I am happy and loving FIRST then I am healthy physically, mentally and emotionally. It doesn't mean that I never cry or get angry...it means that I accept myself as the imperfect human I am.

That acceptance of my imperfection is what, ironically, allows me to improve and become better each and every day. Or not!

And maybe, just maybe...by accepting myself right now I can help someone else in their journey to health and fitness and weight loss success!

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