What's This Blog All About Then?

I'm on a mission to roadtest ways of overcoming negative body image. For years I have struggled with feeling I don't look 'good enough', I'm too fat or flabby. Even when I was a UK Size 8! During each of my two pregnancies I fell back in love with my body, marvelling at the amazing things it was doing and at my feminine voluptuousness.

Now that my most recent baby has been outside of my body for a while, the mum tum and stretchmarks are starting to bug me. I have decided enough is enough. I want to feel proud of my body like I did when I was pregnant. I don't want to wait until I'm a certain weight or dress size to feel good about the way I look. I want to love my body just the way it is right now. And I want to help other women to love their imperfectly perfect bodies too.

Join me on my quest for a better body image. During my journey to (I hope) total body confidence, I'll be posting useful resources, tips and research on body image and self acceptance. There will also be posts from other people shedding light on how to feel comfortable in the skin you're in - maybe you'd like to send me an article? Contact me at annacolette(at)gmail(dot)com with 'Body Image' in the title.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Paul McKenna Visualisations

Happy new Year! A little late but I haven't been slacking. Well, not much anyway. I started my new challenge on 5th January and only decided the day before to change it from tapping (I will do that next I think) to visualisation instead.


Well, I started 'Change Your Life in 7 Days' by Paul McKenna. It's a book and CD that promises to help you realise your dreams, feel better about yourself, and improve your relationships. I've bneen hankering after creating a really big goal for myself and my life so thought this book would help me define - and then achieve - it.

I'm taking a lot longer than 7 days to work through the exercises in the book as I prefer to dedicate more time to it. Also, I have days when I'm not picking up the book at all. But I'm listening to the 'mind-rogramming CD' every night on my Ipod in bed.

What's this got to do with learning to love my body? Well, Paul McKenna recommends doing a few visualisation exercises to improve the way you feel about yourself. They appealed to me (I like to daydream) so I thought I'd do them every day during January and see if they make a difference.

The exercise are:

Your Authentic Self

The Eyes of Love

What's Right With You

I enjoy doing them but find it hard to visualise clearly and add sound, colour and detail as he suggests. Practice makes perfect I guess. Although I'm sure that the feelings of self worth that you generate while you're doing the exercises are more important than the clarity of your visualisations.

I haven't kept up the daily yoga (although I didn't intend to originally) but I really miss it. I defintely feel better about myself when I'm doing a little yoga every day. It's a taster of what I want to become - active, fit, dedicated, spiritual, focused. I like being the kind of person who does yoga every day. Even if it's just two minutes on some days!

So, I recently kickstarted my journey back to yoga with an evening class. It was intense. I worked far, far harder than I would at home. I loved it. I felt good. Challenged yet optimistic that I could eventually do some of the postures that were beyond me. And most of the postures weren't.

For a chubby postnatal woman (is it wrong to still consider yourself postnatal when your baby is 7 months old?!)I was doing well to keep up with the best of them.

Yes, yes I know yoga isn't a competitive activity. But... ;-)

It's worked. I'm back into doing a little yoga every day - and am much happier for it. I'll go to a class every one or two weeks depending on time commitments and budget. I think it helps reinvigorate my personal practice.

And are the visualisations working? It's probably a little too soon to tell. I've only been doing them once a day for 10 days.

Although, I went to a party yesterday with gorgeous girlies all around me and I felt OK. I was a little envious of her legs, and that one's visibly flat stomach in her 'body con' dress, and my mate's slender physique.

But, unusually, I didn't tag the old self-critical thoughts onto the envious ones. Instead of 'Oh wow, look at her legs. I wish mine were like that. Mine are OK up to the knees but then they're huge. Really grim. I wonder if anyone notices? Do you think they pity me?' etc it was 'Oh wow, look at her legs. I bet she works out. My legs could be like that if I do more exercise. They used to be even better than hers when I was younger. I wonder if I could get them to be that fabulous again?'. Big difference actually now I come to think about it.

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