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New Year’s Resolutions

by added on 16 January 2017, Comments Off on New Year’s Resolutions , posted in Blog
By Genajuade Stevenson, Prenatal-Infant Class Coordinator

It’s that time of year. It’s New Year’s resolution time! There’s something exciting and refreshing about a new year that seemingly provides a clean slate for goal setting and making changes we’ve been struggling with or avoiding. Diet, exercise and any other kind of body-image related changes always seem to make the resolution list, especially for us postpartum moms.

As a wellness coach, I often find that my clients initially claim to seek improvement in health through diet and exercise, yet further discussion of their vision reveals that body image issues drive this desire to change eating and exercise habits.

I have personally never felt the social pressure so strongly to make changes to my body as I did after having my now 9-month-old son. Advice for changing your postpartum body seemed to be pouring out of magazines, social media, commercials and even well-meaning friends and family. I’m continually stunned by the stigma and bias around a woman’s postpartum body.

The truth is that losing weight or pursuing other cosmetic changes to our childbearing bodies may not necessarily make us healthier or happier. What’s worse, attempts to regain our pre-baby bodies can come with collateral damage to our health and self-esteem. What if we could find peace with our bodies while achieving optimal health? I believe this would be a gift to ourselves and our children. If we wish to teach our little ones to honor their own bodies no matter the shape or size, we can start by acting as role models for healthy body image.

I look to some body positivity principles to guide my approach to health, wellness and self-care. I hope these may be a source of inspiration as you journey into the new year.

  1. Eat for well-being with mindful attunement to pleasure, satiety, hunger cues and appetite.
  2. Engage in life-enhancing movement or physical activity that brings you joy and pleasure.
  3. Understand that health is NOT synonymous with weight-loss and that health can be achieved in a broad range of shapes and sizes.
  4. Finding peace with your body does not mean passive acceptance. It’s about actively challenging your beliefs and self-talk to honor, love and respect the body that brought life into this world.

Remember, your body is the site of a miracle. The extra skin, marks, dimples and such are a work of art telling the greatest love story of your life.

 

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