Change Your Thoughts…Change the World

I’ve been thinking a lot lately. I haven’t been posting my Friday Affirmations very regularly, and I am missing that. Sometimes it is a challenge to come up with an affirmation every week, but it is a good way to dig down deep and figure out the things I love about myself. The things that we all love about ourselves.

But I’ve been thinking about how these affirmations, or any affirmation, compliment, or kind words can impact a person. Does it really make a difference? If a person looks in the mirror and tells themselves they are beautiful, does that mean they will believe it? Do I believe it?

One thing I do know is that the more a person tells themselves that they are ugly or fat or unworthy, the more they will believe it. So shouldn’t it work the other way around?

I have a challenge for you (and myself). Let’s change our thoughts to positive thoughts, and let’s send a message to the world. It’s okay to love ourselves. It’s okay to think we are beautiful just the way we are.

1. Change your thoughts. Look in the mirror each day and tell yourself one things that you absolutely love about yourself. It doesn’t have to be something big. It could be that you love that little freckle on your nose. It doesn’t have to be something physical. It could be that you love that you have a caring heart. No matter what it is, tell yourself something new you love everyday.

2. Change the world. Tell someone else that you think they are beautiful…and tell them why. Let someone know how important they are to you. Give a complete stranger a compliment. However you want to do it, make an impact on someone else…everyday.

The more we are able to share the beauty of this world…the beauty that is you and me…the more the world will start believing it.

ang

I Believe In Pink

If I could go back in time and meet anyone in the world, I think I’d pick Audrey Hepburn. I don’t know all that much about her, but she had beautiful eyes, gorgeous hair, and even better, she had inspiring words that I think all women should take to heart.

Thank you to my beautiful sister for sharing this with me!

“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.”     -Audrey Hepburn

Thank you Audrey. I do, too.

ang

Talk About It

I’ve never in my whole life been the kind of person who openly talked my feelings or thoughts…all my feelings…with anyone. I haven’t had trouble sharing all my happy feelings and cheerful thoughts. That was never the problem. However, when I’ve felt anger, disappointment, guilt…when I’ve had thoughts about negative body image or feelings of “not good enough,” I just haven’t had it in me to share.

Well, until now.

Okay, so maybe I don’t actually speak about it all the much. I’ve done many eating disorder recovery speeches at my former treatment facility, but other than that my words have mostly been on paper or in my head…or now on this blog.

I use writing as a form of sharing my feelings. It’s not quite the same as talking, but it works just the same for me. I’ve never actually considered myself a writer, an actual writer…I just figured I was someone who likes to write short notes to people or little blog posts, sometimes just for fun or sometimes meaningful. Does that make me a writer, or just someone who writes? (This sounds much similar to the question of whether or not I could call myself a runner.) Then, while I was reading my book club book The Girls From Ames, I came across a line on how Kelly defines the word “writer”…

“…the word “writer” can be defined broadly. It’s about expressing emotion. It’s about helping people think. It’s about using words to understand herself. It’s about helping other people find their own words.”

So…I guess I am a writer.

I’ve said before that I feel like it’s part of my life’s mission to do whatever I can to help prevent future eating disorders. It is a problem that is too un-talked about and too widespread. I try to talk as openly and honestly about my experiences, although I haven’t shared the entire story on this blog yet. Many of the emotions and situations I went through can be stored in the “embarrassing” category. But that’s okay. When I have the opportunity to share these things I know that it may help that person who is feeling the same way but is too embarrassed or scared to share. And it not only can be helpful to others, but it helps me stay grounded in where I am today. It reminds me of how far I’ve come, but how important my experiences are.

It helps me to understand that God has a plan far greater than I’d ever imagined for myself.

So I challenge you to talk, or write, about it…whatever “it” is for you. Because more than likely there is someone else in the world feeling the same way, but she or he thinks they are alone.

We aren’t alone in our struggles or our strengths, and the greatest thing about people and community is that they are the best support systems.

Oh, and by the way, you are looking gorgeous today (even if you’re still in your pajamas that consists of a baggy t-shirt and shorts…like me! 🙂 )

ang

Book Club Post…Five Hundred and Thirteen Pages

Finally…book club is back (like, four years later)! And since nearly half a decade has passed since I have written about my girlies from Ames, I have four whole chapters to recap (yikes!) So, I’ve decided to do this post a little differently so that I don’t end up writing a nine-hundred and seventy-three page book report!

For each chapter, I will pick out my favorite quote, and then write about what that quote means to me…then you can do the same (if you want to)!

The Intervention

Studies suggest that the average girl today is likely to grow up to be a lifelong dieter, to have a distorted body image, and to be emotionally scarred by cliques.”

Poor Sally to have to go through that. It takes a very strong person to come out of such a devastating situation with so much forgiveness.

And, of course I’d pick this quote in this chapter. The most disturbing word here is “likely”…the average girl is likely. A couple paragraphs later this “likeliness” is referred to as a “national crisis”. A national crisis indeed!

When did we (girls, women, media, people) become so mean…so comparing…so judgmental?! I’m not saying I’m innocent either, although I like to think that I keep other peoples’ feelings in mind before I speak. But again, I’m not innocent. I catch myself making comments about people on television, about people I see in a store, about myself. Then I feel like a hypocrite for preaching about owning your beauty here on my blog.

However, I do think if we all (as in everyone in this world!) could make a conscious effort to change the way we talk about other people, change the way we talk to ourselves, and stop comparing ourselves to other people (easier said than done, I know), then we could change this “likeliness”.

I read a quote from Lolly on twitter today that read,

When you know who you are~you are more accepting of others.”

This sentence is so true. Live it…..and remember that you are deserving and beautiful and admirable…and you will see those traits in others, too!

FBB and Other Secrets

There were times when they felt humiliated or ashamed and kept it to themselves.”

I chose this quote because it is so me. I definitely find it hard to talk about the difficult things in life, and I’d rather people view me as a happy person! But I have learned to keeping up a happy face is not always possible…..and that’s okay! The funny thing about it is, whenever I actually have talked to someone about my problems, I always feel better afterward…then I can actually go back to being happy!

Defining Love

“‘I think we’re meant to truly love one person, to have a life partner.'” 

Okay…so I loved this chapter!!! (Of course this sappy, lovey-dovey chapter would be my favorite!) I feel like I can relate so much to Karla in this chapter. I feel incredibly lucky to have found my life partner…my soul mate…my one true love! I agree with Karla in that I believe God put two people in this world who are just meant for each other!

And I can partly agree with Kelly. I don’t necessarily agree that a person should have a new love with every stage of their life. But, witnessing my mother get married last year to a man that is not my dad has made me believe that it is possible to love more than once in a lifetime. I know that my parents loved each other, and without that love, my sister and I wouldn’t be here. But I also know that after so long, my parents were not right for each other. Now my mom is happy in love again (and I’m working on my dad…anyone know any lovely, single 40-50 year olds?! Hehe!)

And although I don’t have children yet, I admire Karla’s love for her daughter, too. I believe when I am a mother I will feel that same way. I also loved the quote in this chapter, “The girls watched her snuggle with her baby, partly envying her and partly wondering about the ways in which loving feelings would swell inside them when their time came to be mothers.” I feel the same way when I watch other people with their babies, and I just cannot wait to be a mother someday!

“If Not for You”

Women need other women.Dare I say…sometimes women just understand better than men. I adore my husband, and I will always tell him everything, but I will always need some lovely lady to rely on. I’ve always had my mom and sister there for me if I ever needed anything, and now I feel like I have a strong core of girlfriends that are always there for me, as well. I know that my mom feels a lot of the time that I am grown up and don’t need her anymore…but mom, I will always need you. (And you too, Maggie, and all my girlies!) Always.

Sorry…this did end up pretty close to a five hundred and thirteen page book report! What were your favorite quotes of these chapters? If you aren’t that far, or just aren’t reading the book, what do these quotes mean to you?

ang