Wednesday, 29 July 2015

How to get more body confidence?

I'd like to think that one day, I really won't worry about what I look like to other people

Breakfast: Porridge
Lunch: Large salad buffet
Snacks: No snacks today

Yesterday ended up being more random than I thought it would be. After seeing my counsellor for my usual Tuesday 5pm appointment, we got onto the subject of jealousy and I mentioned that I find it hard to 'accept' the fact that my Boyfriend finds other women attractive. It's a totally human (and natural) thing and certainly doesn't mean he's going to run off with someone else - But due to the fact I am still not happy with how I look, it almost feels as if I compare myself to whoever he finds attractive and 100% of the time, feel I'm not as sexy / beautiful / gorgeous as the 'other woman' - I feel I should point out, that my Boyfriend has never, ever mentioned another woman.. He's so respectful, but even when he's around other women, I always worry 'Does he find them attractive? Does he prefer them over me?'

I'd like to think I've got a little bit of self awareness - at least enough to appreciate the fact that it's not a healthy mindset and whilst I believe I 'control' it quite well (I don't control anything my Boyfriend does, he spends time with both women and men... I don't constantly question him on anything etc) It would be much better for me and my head if I didn't feel so unattractive.

These thoughts were in my head today as I went to the Spa. I've been going to Nirvana Spa near Reading for the past... 5? 6 years and I still remember the first time I went - I bought myself a Birthday present and decided to go on my own which was a massive thing for me as I used to find it really scary to do things on my own.

Nirvana is amazing - I still love it. The people are lovely and friendly, the whole place is really clean and despite me having a massively low attention span, I can quite happily spend hours in there, just wandering around from the steam room, to the sauna, to the various pools....  However, the first time I went, I was petrified of wearing a swimming costume as I thought everyone would look at me and judge. I can't have been more than a size 18, but I felt like the fattest and ugliest person on the planet. So, rather than thinking 'Fuck it'... I didn't wear a swimming costume. I just wonder my underwear and a fluffy bathrobe which I kept wrapped tightly around me all day.

This meant I couldn't use 90% of the facilities - Think of it... you pay a LOT of money for a day and you only use 10% of things, e.g. 'the chairs' because you're so worried about what you look like to others. Despite that, I still had a lovely day, but when I decided to become a member, I made up my mind to actually use the facilities and try not to worry about wearing a swimming costume in front of others. The next time I went, I did wear a swimming costume, however even that wasn't straight forward as I worried about how I'd change in the changing room... Would they have a spare cubicle? Would people look?

I ended up doing what I used to do for school, which was wear my swimming costume under my clothes, drive to the Spa and then just take my clothes off - Hey presto.. instant swimming costume. I was still petrified when I took my robe off, my hands and arms automatically wrapping around my stomach and me sucking my stomach in so I wouldn't look 'so fat' to anyone else.

Needless to say, I saw precisely 0 people look at me or pay me any attention at all. Literally... Noone gasped at how huge I was, noone batted an eyelid when I wobbled to any of the pools.. It was as if I fitted in, or at the very least, didn't offend anyone else with what I looked like. Women who were a lot bigger than me didn't seem to have the same thought process - I don't know why but I was actually amazed to see ladies bigger than me, looking perfectly happy to go swimming, wander around without a massive fluffy robe on and even get naked in the changing room. How can they have such brilliant confidence, yet I feel so freakish?

I think it makes a big difference where you are and who you're with - Today at the spa, I had a massage that involved wearing nothing but a pair of paper pants. 5 years ago, I'd have been absolutely terrified at the thought of anyone seeing me in nothing but a pair of pants (even my Boyfriend), however as the Spa therapists are so nice, friendly and non-judging, every time I've been, I've relaxed more. Equally, as noone has ever stared at me or made any horrible comments, I feel safe and I don't feel like I have to cover up as I'm not going to be judged. I wonder if this is why there are so many women only gyms? So you can work out and not feel like you need to cover up in 5 layers just so people don't judge you?

I certainly don't think I've got all the answers, nor do I think I'll wake up one morning and be all like 'Yeah, I'm confident, yeaaaaaah', or anything like that. However I do hope that as I lose weight, my confidence will increase, I also think that if I surround myself with supportive people and make a concious choice to be in environments where I'm not going to be judged for my size, I'll feel more confident about being 'me' and less worried about fitting in...

After the most amazing time at the Spa, I saw my Boyfriend and I cooked him a really, really nice haddock dinner - I think we both enjoyed it, perhaps I did more than him as I was cooking from scratch and I always really enjoy doing that. It really didn't take long and turned out really delicious - it was low carb, so that satisfied him and was also healthy and filling, so satisfied me as well :-) After a really nice chat on the sofa, we headed out to the pub for a quite drink and now I'm back, sitting on the sofa, watching 'Tattoo Fixers' and writing this blog.

Tomorrow I'm meeting a professional person who interviewed me for a job, but I didn't accept it. Despite this, we got on really well and I suggested we go for lunch as it would be nice to know as many nice, friendly and professional people in my industry as possible. He suggested I pick a restaurant, so I'm going to try my best to pick somewhere healthy for lunch :-)

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