How My Body Image Changed with the Time Zones
by Rochelle Griffin
Here I am, in Bora Bora Tahiti…just a girl from FL now on the other side of the world. Friday was my first full day here as a guest with the Top Ten Beachbody coaches…and what do I do? Obsess. Huh, you say? You are at one of the most beautiful locations on earth and you are obsessing? Ummmm…yes? Let me explain. You see, I’ve been uncomfortable with my body for most of my life…concerned about how I look…feeling fat, ugly. So when I emotionally ate and became fat…well, I lived up how I felt. These feelings of inadequacy led to years of yo-yo dieting that so many people, men and women, experience.
Even now…coming here…I see pictures just from yesterday and obsess. Those thoughts of “damn, I shouldn’t have skipped that one workout. Or UGH…why did I eat that rice that one day.” I see my flaws…where I would like to be not as thick, where I would like to be more tone, more muscle. My brain starts to question…”am I being judged? DO I look fat to others?”
I tend to see the bad in my physical appearance…not the good..even when I’m told otherwise. I fight feelings of inadequacy. I can’t begin to tell you how many times my husband has told me how beautiful I am to him. When I argue back…and yes, I HAVE argued back…how crazy is that?…he just looks at me and shakes his head. It’s so hard sometimes to believe it. It’s because how I feel has to come from inside of me…not from external sources. My brain KNOWS that…but my brain likes to mess with me.
Anyways, fast forward to the first night here. We were treated to an after-dinner, authentic Polynesian show. I was amazed. Here were women…and men…of all ages, dancing for us. Their outfits were very tiny. Guess what? They had MEAT on their bodies…they had bellies…they had some back fat…and it was one of the most beautiful things that I have ever seen. Their smiles radiated from within. They GLOWED. They were obviously very comfortable with their bodies and felt beautiful. It was an amazing, eye-opening moment for me. If “I” had been up there as one of the dancers, in the tiny coconut shell tops and sarongs, I would have been considered way too skinny. My body type is not what is revered here in Tahiti.
What have we done to ourselves as an American society? How have we all fed into this crazy ideal? Here I am, in my 40’s, and this idea STILL haunts and follows me. I still stress when I eat what I know that I shouldn’t…and then pat myself on the back when I’m “good.” Why can’t we just be comfortable with who we are?
Now, am I saying that we shouldn’t workout or eat nutritious food? Of course not. I am all about living a healthy lifestyle. I’m talking about when you take that healthy lifestyle to another level and let it affect our inner voice…when we start to obsess and stop enjoying life because we are worried about what others think of us because we ate that piece of bread and our belly isn’t flat.
I’m done. I want to celebrate myself…as a women…as a person. I want to simply connect with others…on a deeper level. If you connect to any piece of what I’m saying, I want to challenge you to look within also. Remember, no one can make you feel inadequate without YOUR permission. How is that for some warm, French Polynesian water thrown in your face? Now…go out and BE extraordinary!
A Toast to Your Health,
Rochelle Griffin is a Registered Nurse with over 20 years experience who has transitioned her love for fitness, health, & freedom into a 6-figure company that now helps others live the life of their dreams.
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