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A helpful Website and perhaps a challenge...

Saturday, June 29, 2013

I have recently subscribed a very cool newsletter that deals with the body image. There are always some great tips in here that I think other Sparkers could benefit from as well. It's a blog found at PsychCentral.com

If you visit this site, you will find great hints for all kinds of issues that come up in life. For example, Alcoholism, ADHD, Depression,Sleep & Eating Disorders, etc.

By all means check it out!

Here's an excerpt from this week:

"One of the things that happens when we feel bad about our bodies is that we don’t let ourselves enjoy life.

It’s as though, suddenly, a physical flaw renders us worthless, and we truly believe that we need to punish ourselves. We need to deprive ourselves of joy.

Then we’ll understand the seriousness of the situation.

Then, we’ll definitely do what we need to in order to lose weight or get more muscular or change ourselves in some other way.

But, as I’ve written throughout the years on Weightless, joy, play and calm do not show up after you’ve lost X amount of pounds, after your waist has gotten smaller, after you’ve stopped eating dessert for a week.

And, if you do get a glimpse of them, they usually vanish, and new worries appear: How do I maintain this weight loss? I’m so hungry. I need to go to the gym every day or I’ll gain weight, right? I need to have X number of calories, and no more.

Instead, consider taking the focus away from punishment, shoulds and deprivation, and place it on fun and enjoyment and relaxation.

In her book The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity, author Julia Cameron includes an exercise “to excavate our own pasts for the shards of buried dreams and delights.” While answering these prompts, she suggests being “fast and frivolous.”

I think this is a powerful exercise, not just in breaking through creative blocks, but in building a more joyful life, independent of our looks or the number on the scale or the dessert we devoured or didn’t.

So forget how much weight you want to lose, or what you want to look like.

Focus away from your negative thoughts (let them pass like clouds; tell them to take a break or take a hike). And answer these prompts in your journal. (Remember, answer them quickly, jotting down whatever pops into your mind.)

“List five hobbies that sound fun.
List five classes that sound fun.
List five things you personally would never do that sound fun.
List five skills that would be fun to have.
List five things you used to enjoy doing.
List five silly things you would like to try once.”

After you’ve listed your responses, the next fun part is figuring out which hobby, class, skill or silly activity you’d like to try this weekend.

Your life starts this second, regardless of how much you weigh or what you look like or how you feel about your body.

(Ideally, you feel comfortable in your own skin and accept and appreciate yourself. But if you’re not there yet, that’s OK. Remember, you can let nourishing actions lead the way, and your mind can catch up.)

Embrace that, and embark on a few adventures."

Dare to share any lists you've made or better yet -- what challenge you've taken on! emoticon

* I should have added this particular newsletter is called "Weightless"
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I love that website. It is full of interesting and informative information!
    Glad you are finding it helpful and sharing with everyone. emoticon
    1712 days ago
    Wow, this is right up my alley! Thank you so much for the great suggestions. I've kind of been doing something like this, trying to improve my life. And here you come along, at just the right time, with just the right information!
    1715 days ago
    I will have to check out that website, sounds great! emoticon
    1719 days ago
    I love the fast and frivolous 5 (say that 5 times fast). If you do it so fast and so frivolously you don't notice that you have to pick one, well, so much the better! Now you'll have to stand on a street corner wearing a milkmaid's outfit and singing opera. Because you said that was a silly thing you'd try once, right?
    1721 days ago
  • _VALEO_
    Thanks for the link! Really like the list exercise!
    1723 days ago
    I will be checking out the site you mentioned, it sounds awesome!

    Being comfortable in your own skin is necessary to truly enjoy life.

    I hope you have a beautiful Sunday, my friend.

    1723 days ago
    This was timely - thanks so much for the website link! I have a friend in the early stages of battling alcoholism and it looks like it has some resources that will help me in my conversations with her. I think she's struggling with exactly what you say about weight. "Joy, play and calm do not show up after you’ve lost X amount of pounds, after your waist has gotten smaller, after you’ve stopped eating dessert for a week." Not drinking has not resulted in the changes she expected - she hasn't found joy yet.

    And I'M going to sit down with your prompts for myself!

    1723 days ago

    Is funny that Julia Cameron quote because I read "pasts" as "pasta." Always thinking of food LOL. Great blog. Before I started sparking I stopped punishing myself and went to the US where they sell great larger clothes at Macy's. I made sure I treated myself well at any size. It worked wonders and actually made eating healthy so much easier because I cared for myself.

    Thanks for passing along this practical exercise in finding real joy in our lives. You will notice the joy kids express and somehow on the road to adulthood this gets lost. Does the newsletter have a title to it? emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1724 days ago
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