HOW I OVERCAME BODY DYSMORPHIA WHEN I GAINED 20 LBS (and How I Learned To Love Myself)
by Amanda Forth
Founder of The Crystal Boutique
Do you have a number on the scale that you need to “be at” to be happy? Do you just need to lose exactly 3 more pounds and you’ll be happy and you'll have the perfect body?
How many instagram model bodies are you swooning over right now…because they are soooo “GOALS!”? Are you staring in the mirror and picking apart your body thinking you are “fat” ?
This, my beautiful friend, is called body dysmorphia, an unhealthy body image obsession and most importantly a lack of self love fueled by the bullshit standards of instagram and the media….
I am a recovered addict in the following diseases: scale freak, obsessed calorie tracker, food measurer extraordinaire, and instamodel stalking body dyshmorphic lunatic. For as long as I can remember I “hated” my body if I wasn’t within a pound of my goal weight (which was totally impossible unless I was starving 23 hours of the day). I also spent hours staring at other girls bodies on instagram (unbeknownst to me they were completely photoshopped and apped to be acne, sunspot, and wrinkle free with tans so perfect they would make burnt toast jealous).
I had excel charts with the exact times I was eating, exactly what I was eating and I was convinced I’d become obese if I didn’t make it to the gym 2x in one day. Yet somehow with all of this effort, I NEVER felt good about myself.
I was never pretty enough, skinny enough, or good enough. I would stare in the mirror and notice any imperfection I could find. My instagram feed was swarming with perfect tans, perfect butts, and thigh gaps. To add to the fun, I think my absolute favorite phrases were “omg I look so fat”, “I feel so fat today” or “do you think I gained weight”. My poor family and my poor ex-boyfriends – all they heard from my mouth was self-hate and body shit-talking!
DA FUQ was I doing that for?!
Then, all of a sudden after a life of calorie tracking and overly obsessive gym schedules, I was fucking TIRED. Tired of trying to keep up with myself. Tired of hitting my unrealistic goals for a week only to realize I was back at square one again. I was so freaken tired of it that I found the courage inside me to say FUCK IT. Because hating yourself is EXHAUSTING!!!!
I started to eat what I wanted without tracking my every swallow, realizing that I still wanted to eat healthy foods about 80 percent of the time. I was still working out 4-6 days a week, but I was forming a healthy relationship with my gym routine. The gym was no longer punishment to work off a brownie, but it made me feel confident and strong in addition to burning off the brownie.
I started to have a beer with friends if I felt like it, or ice cream more than 1x a month without having a panic attack inside counting how many calories I was going “over” my INSANE daily limit.
At the same time I started to get annoyed at any instagram feed full of what “instagram society” says is a perfect body. I unfollowed EVERY single account that featured girls with bodies I wished I could have but never would have. I’m sorry but why are we making another humans body that we will LITERALLY NEVER HAVE our “Goals”??!! Cheers to impossible, Ludacris goals…!
And then….my body started to change. I no longer fit into a size 0-2 but I was suddenly a healthy, sexy and curvier version of myself in a GOD FORBID 4-6. And I freaken LOVED myself. I gained weight and stopped talking about how I was “fat” 24/7….nor did I care if someone else thought I was fat. I stopped believing that someone was only going to love me if I weighed 127 pounds (that was my magic number….) or if I lost that extra bit of fat on my thighs (which is sexy, amiright?).
Little by little I started to love myself. And that’s where all the beauty happened.
So what is the moral of my story? SELF-FUCKING-LOVE. It’s truly the KEY to soooo much freedom. I don’t love my body BECAUSE I gained 20 pounds…I love my body because I love myself. Because I nourish it and I don’t deprive it and because it’s sexy and womanly and happy. I love my body because it allows me to surf, to travel, to walk (to the ice cream shop AND the green juice shop!) because it’s mine and no one else’s. There is NOTHING SEXIER than confidence….just ask all my Bumble matches. LOL.
Stalking another girls body and wishing it was yours is not going to help you love yourself. If you feel bad about yourself when looking at a certain girls posts…do yourself a favor and unfollow her and start giving yourself the love you once gave her. <3
Surround yourself with people who aren't assholes and love themselves too - they're body positivity and self love will be contagious!
And the best news ever of course…there’s a crystal for self love!
ROSE QUARTZ is the crystal of love, romance, confidence and most importantly SELF LOVE. If you struggle with any insecurities, arm yourself with ALL the rose quartz. Keep one in your pocket…one in your purse. Keep on in the bathroom so that when you’re getting ready and you’re about to say something mean about yourself…you can glimpse at your rose quartz and remember you’re on a journey of self LOVE…not self hate! Xoxo Happy Healing! Amanda
Thanks to my beautiful friends Steph and Hannah for getting naked on the beach at 6AM in Bali with me. Women supporting women, whatUP!