Why Can’t We?

One part of life that I struggle with very much is health and fitness and how all of that factors into my emotional wellbeing.  Luckily, I think I have a fairly healthy self image.  I love my body, and while there are parts of it that I might change if I had a magic wand, I see my physical body as more of a reflection and product of my lifestyle.  I pretty much see everyone’s body as a product of their lifestyle, though I do acknowledge that everyone is different and my “normal” isn’t the same as someone else’s.  Basically what I’m trying to say is that my true problems stem from my own perceived qualities and “personality flaws” rather than hating my body.  My body is my temple!

This topic is kind of difficult to write/talk about because, I think, in the United States, we are so overly sensitive about weight.  Admitting you could be healthier is like admitting that you are currently wrong, and we tie the whole thing to our worth.  (Also, Americans have a terrible time admitting they are wrong, which I could talk about forever.)  I suppose I can see how one could arrive there though.  Here I am saying that my body is a product of my lifestyle.  In a society that highly values being active and productive and extremely shames the lazy, I can see how a body that might indicate a less active lifestyle is looked down on and judged negatively.  However, it’s just a body!  It can stand to lose a few pounds and not mean that your whole life is a failure.

One quote that sticks in my head a lot is something along the lines of “you owe nothing to the person you were five minutes ago.”  There is such a mental shift that we can collectively take from “I can’t” to “why can’t I?”  I’m guilty of it as well, especially when it comes to making healthy food decisions.  Living at home with my parents again, it is far too easy to give into eating terrible foods, or just mildly-bad-for-me foods, because my parents don’t put as much value into eating well (which is absurd, because when I don’t eat well my body revolts).  It is also frustrating that I feel as though I don’t learn.  Anyway, right now I will remind myself that I owe nothing to these perceptions of myself.  My idea of my own abilities is a self-fulfilling prophecy; “whether you think you can, or you think you can’t — you’re right” (Henry Ford).  Why can’t I?