"An open letter to my body: It’s been a while, but I'm finally listening."

Weight Watchers
Thanks to our brand partner, Weight Watchers

Dear Body,

How are you going, old friend? Sorry I haven’t written in a while, you know how life gets, but I promise I’m going to make more of an effort to listen to you from now on.

So body, get this: Last week I was out clothes shopping with my friends (which I semi-dreaded because who the heck doesn’t shop online these days?) when I heard the woman in the next change room say, ‘Damn, I look amazing.’

Her comment caught me by surprise. Not only do these words rarely come out of a woman’s mouth (no matter how often we may internally applaud ourselves), but this woman wasn’t a Victoria Secret model. She had lumps, bumps and soft spots. By any definition, she was ‘normal’. She was a normal woman who loved her body.

Body, the woman’s statement made me realise how little I tell you I love you. Because of the soft spots and the lack of a flat stomach, I’ve often convinced myself you were ‘ugly.’ The media and societal pressures haven’t helped either.

improve your body confidence
Do you ever thank your body? Image: supplied.

Every day tabloids and glossy mags print headlines about celebrities who’ve ‘lost 50 kgs in a year!’ or ’10 ways to feel body confident this summer,’ usually accompanied with pictures of women with model-liked bodies who have definitely been Photoshopped.

Even when women ‘win,’ we’re still not perfect.

As you know, body, I have written previously about my struggles with weight and social anxiety. I said I wanted to do something about it.

I always thought that losing weight will make me love my body. But it’s so much bigger than that. What I’ve realised is that I don’t just want to lose weight, I want to revamp my lifestyle – and Weight Watchers’ new Program, Your Way, understands that. They’ve created a three-dimensional, lifestyle-focused approach, based on three pillars: Food, Fit and Feel.

And with that in mind, you’ll have noticed that from just a month on the Program my eating and lifestyle habits have changed dramatically.

“My eating and lifestyle habits have changed dramatically.” Images: supplied.

Body, I think you’ve guessed by now exercise and I have never been friends, heck we’re not even acquaintances these days. But I knew making small changes in what I do meant I needed to start moving my body more, too. And the easiest way to do that has been to fit movement within my day-to-day life, so I’ve started walking to work a few times a week and swimming laps in my lunch break (which you kindly let me remember the day after).


I pay more attention to what goes in my mouth and make a conscious effort to eat more filling and nutritious food. I eat more vegetables every day, make sure I bring a packed lunch and no longer keep treats in the house. This has completely changed the way I feel. I have more energy, am sleeping better and I can see my relationship with food evolving.

The most surprising side effect of my lifestyle change so far is the renewed confidence it has given me. I am saying ‘yes’ to more social invitations, I’m not shying away from voicing my opinion and I’m not afraid to leave the house in exercise gear.

It hasn’t been easy. The first couple of weeks went swimmingly, I was able to turn down the treats often passed around at work and I got rid of any temptations lurking in my cupboards.

improve your body confidence
“The most surprising side effect of my lifestyle change so far is the renewed confidence it has given me.” Image: supplied.

And then my friends came to stay. For a week, we ate out for almost every meal, and as much as I tried to make healthy decisions, when you’re having brunch every day and a different kind of cuisine every night, body, I heard you yearning for me to treat you better. But you taught me an important lesson. In order for me to feel good about myself, everything needs to be done in moderation, and knowing how lethargic I felt that week, I never want to feel like that again.

Already this lifestyle change has given me a completely different view of you, body. You were once a daily reminder that I’m not ‘normal,’ yet now I realise that I’m thankful for you, that you function the way you should. I know now I wasn’t giving you the same benefits you had given me.

I’m still not quite at the stage the lady in the changeroom was at. But I hope when I make it there I’ll be able to scream it to the world without being chastised for having a bit of self-love.

Because a bit of self-love never hurt anyone.

Speak soon,


Tags: food , health , health-and-wellbeing
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