Before and After

I just came back from a terrific bariatric support group meeting. A participant mentioned that a friend of hers posted a photo of herself, 100 lbs. heavier, on her fridge. She was curious about what we thought.

Here’s what I thought. It all depends on why you’re posting the photo and what feelings that photo creates for you.

If you’re posting it to scare yourself into discipline, to threaten yourself with an undesirable outcome, then I think it’s a bad idea. In this mindset, you’re reinforcing the struggle and reminding yourself of the horror that lurks with one extra treat. You’re also likely reinforcing that somehow you don’t have control and that you can’t be trusted and this just isn’t true. We always have control and we make certain decisions and choices, but we are certainly in control.

Living on your toes, in fear of yourself, fighting yourself, is a horrid way to exist and just perpetuates the mental beatings you’ve grown so accustomed to, no matter what you look like. This is a big dose of yuck!

It also encourages rebellion. If you’re constantly fighting yourself, eventually you’ll want to act out and what’s a perfect way to act out? Just ignore that picture, open that door and go ballistic! I know. Been there. Done that. Remember, it never works to beat yourself thin. Never.

Now on the other hand, if you’re posting the picture to remind yourself of how self-care and self-love have become your best friends, to remind yourself that you were actually beautiful even though you weighed 100 pounds more, of how far you’ve come in your journey and to reinforce the role that each part of your past played and how it was all perfect and got you to where you are today, then I say go for it. That’s a big dose of love.

The answer to whether posting that picture on your fridge is a good thing or not comes down to how it makes you feel. And if you feel struggle, diet mentality and/or fight, put it in that box with all of the other pictures you say you’ll scan and file one day!

If it makes you feel terrific and proud, blow it up, frame it and celebrate it!

You’re awesome beyond measure, a deliberate creation and everything you can do to remind yourself of that fact is a good thing!


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