Do you also feel like January went by really fast? This last year has done such a number on my perception of time passing. It somehow feels wild to say that we’ve been dealing with this pandemic for almost a year already, and yet it also feels like it was the longest year ever.
With the beginning of a new year we are always bombarded with marketing messaging telling us now is the time for big changes. “New year, new you!” they scream. All of January we had workout programs promoting exercise as ways to lose that quarantine weight. Countless fad diets and detoxes telling us our bodies surviving a worldwide health emergency is not enough and they need to be thinner.
Now it’s February and this messaging has slowed down a bit, but did those drastic workout regimes actually make us healthier? Did those restrictive diets make us thinner and finally happy? An important question for me is, are those practices sustainable (and enjoyable) past January? What about in a month or two?
I’ve been delighted to see a trend of more and more people opting out of those old school new year’s resolutions that demand weight loss at any cost, and instead seeing an increase in desire to focus on health (not thinness). We have tried all those diets and have heard all the messages that say we are at our most valuable when we are at our thinnest. And that’s just not cutting it anymore.
My invitation is of gratitude towards our bodies for making it through such a stressful year. In a year that took so many lives, if our biggest concern is a few extra pounds or some extra comfort eating, isn’t that something to be grateful for? I want to see us having grace for ourselves and our bodies. A larger focus on self care and self love, and the behaviors we can learn and promote to actually be healthier (mental health is just as important) regardless of the number on a scale.