Seeing the Whole Truth of Who You Are: The Antidote to a Negative Body Image

 Just like the Pleasure Seeking Child hooks us with the thin sliver of truth about eating pleasure food–that it tastes good, and leaves out the whole picture of the shame, blame, weight gain, bloating that we also experience when we eat, the Relentless Critic hooks us with a slim sliver of truth about our identity, our apparent physicality, and ignores the immense totality of what we are–divine, vast beyond measure, ageless, and deathless. We are unique manifestations of the wholeness, with qualities and talents that will never be matched or duplicated ever again!

The Critic’s assessment of our worth only looks at the spare tire around our middle or the new wrinkle and doesn’t include the beauty of our compassion, generosity, or kindness. It only values the outer and keeps us stuck in the ego’s superficial worldview: our physical appearance is the only thing that other’s value about us.

From your own experience, how long do you remain under the spell of people’s outer beauty, if they are ugly on the inside? Isn’t it true that if there is little to love about how they move in the world and treat others, the magic of their attractiveness loses its power? On the flip side, if people are plain on the outside and exude an inner radiance because they are comfortable in their own skin and treat others with love and respect, don’t they start to appear more attractive on the outside?

Take out your journal and make a list of your positive inner qualities. Today, if a negative thought about your body arises, replace it with a positive thought about an inner virtue. Then, reread your list. Tonight before you go to bed, reread your list again. And over the next week, add to your list and reread it daily. Pretty soon, when a negative thought about your body arises, it will be second nature to dismiss it, and see the whole truth of your beautiful soul.