When people make comments about your weight gain, does it totally bring you down?
In an ideal world, no one would comment on anyone’s weight, but we don’t live in an ideal world. And since we don’t, we have to expect that people are going to make comments about us and a lot of the time, they mean no harm. They either think they’re just making an observation or maybe they’re trying to help us by showing concern.
But no matter what anyone says to you about you, they do not have the power to make you feel anything.
Any feeling you feel is coming from you, from your thoughts and beliefs about yourself.
It’s not the person’s comments that cause you to feel angry, ashamed, or embarrassed, but it’s how you respond to their comments.
Let’s say someone says it looks like you’ve gained weight. Here are two examples of how you might respond in your mind and how those responses could make you feel.
Example 1: The thought – “I’m disgusting and it’s because I have no control over myself.” The feeling – ashamed.
Here, you’re putting yourself down. All that person did was say something that caused you to bring this thought to the forefront of your mind. This is a belief you have about yourself. They didn’t say it, you thought it.
Maybe you think that’s what they meant though. But really, how do you even know? It’s not at all what they said and you have no idea what they’re thinking!
This is not about their thoughts anyway, it’s about yours. Yours are the only ones that truly matter when we’re talking about how you feel.
Example 2: The thought – “Yes, I have gained weight, I’ve been eating too much.” The feeling – neutral.
In this example, you’re merely noting the fact that you are larger than you were without any negative emotion attached.
This 2nd example is a non-judgmental observation about your size at the moment and why you’re here.
That first example is full of judgment.
What benefit is there to judging yourself? None that I can think of.
Accepting where you are now and how you got here has far more benefits. The main one here being that other people’s comments won’t cause you to go down a negative thinking spiral that causes you to feel badly about yourself….which could in turn cause you to eat.
If you feel negatively about your body or yourself, then no matter what anyone else says, you’ll probably feel negatively when they say it.
Someone could say to you, “You look great!” and if you don’t believe that you look great you’ll probably think, “No, I don’t.”
You can’t even accept the compliment! You’ll even make positive comments cause bad feelings.
It’s never about what someone says to you, but what you honestly believe about yourself.
Chances are that if you don’t believe there is anything positive about your body then you’ll never believe anyone else when they say something positive.
The great news is, to feel better about your body and change how you think about it, you don’t even have to change how your body looks right now.
You can, and should accept it at any size because this is your reality in this moment. Your other option is to hate it, or at least dislike it, and that is just going to make you feel bad. And what do you do when you feel bad? Eat.
You can’t make people not say things. You can’t ask every person you come in contact with to abide by your rules of never mentioning your weight.
What you can do is work on how you speak to yourself, what you believe about yourself, and accepting yourself.
Next time someone makes a comment that causes you feel badly about yourself, recognize that it’s not them doing it, but it’s you. Instead of getting mad at them, get in your head and figure out what’s really causing you to feel that way. You’ll probably see you have some self-acceptance work to do. And then get to work!