One of the first questions I ask women who come to me for weight loss advice is why they want to lose the weight. I get the usual responses – “I want to be healthier,” “I want to be able to keep up with my kids,” “I want to feel better about myself.” And all of those are true. But there’s always another truth – one we all know – but one many women keep hidden away. Most think it’s the prize that comes from weight loss. The reward for all the sweat and hard work.
But the funny thing about this truth is it can be actually be key to losing the weight. And it can be achieved no matter your current size and shape. The reason nearly every woman comes to me for weight loss help is simple: They want to feel sexier. Because face it – sexy is a feeling – and feeling sexy can start right now – no matter your size or your shape.
Our perception of sexy has been skewed – by Photoshopped models and our own nagging self doubt. We’ve been corrupted by the idea that happiness (and sexiness) and everything else we want will start when we hit that magical number on the scale. And in the meantime, we celebrate any victory, success, or milestone with food (we deserve something after all – and food is so easy. It’s readily available and we don’t have to put anyone else out in order to get some. After all – we tell ourselves we don’t deserve that kind of attention until we weigh (insert magical number here) pounds.)
So how can you feel sexy now – no matter what weight you are?
1. Stretch yourself – figuratively and literally.
Do something that breaks you out of your comfort zone. Take a class. Try a new sport or activity. Take a chance. The self-esteem you gain from learning something new will show up all over you – in your face and in the way you move your body. And everyone knows there’s nothing sexier than confidence.
A lot of women I talk to say that doing yoga actually makes them feel sexy. There’s something about all that stretching and breathing that helps them connect to a part of themselves they like. And it does wonders for your posture as well as your hormone balance. Try a Sun Salutation or a evening practice and see what you think.
2. Pick a body part you like and emphasize it. Then pick another one.
Even when we feel our absolute worst, we all have a particular part or aspect of ourselves that we like more than another. It might be your eyes, or your arms, your calves, or your laugh – but there’s something about you that you wouldn’t change – not for anything (or anyone). Hone in on that part. Dress it up. Show it off. Then notice another part you like (even a little bit) and notice it. Keep noticing the things you like about yourself. Then, simply let them shine.
3. Do something fun. Anything. Maybe something you’ve been putting off until you lost the weight. Maybe something you thought you’re just to old for. Whatever it is, do it. Now – with abandon.
4. Focus on how you want to feel not what you want to weigh. Figure out what makes you feel that way. Then do those things. If I want to feel full of energy, I eat foods that make me feel energetic after I eat them (sorry maple bar and mocha for breakfast – you two don’t do that). If I want to feel bold, I do something that requires boldness (paragliding, for example), and if I want to feel cared for, I do something kind for myself (a warm bath, a massage – you get the idea). Think about how you want to feel – now. Then do the things that spark that feeling.
5. Move that body. Exercise has been proven to make you feel better about yourself.
In fact, studies have shown that working out can actually boost your libido – make you feel sexy while getting healthier. So find some fun way to move your body – and do it. Dance. Run. Get your heart rate up and your sweat on. Who knows, it may get you a standing ovation.
What makes you feel sexy? Share your strategies in the comments section below.