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Body Esteem

Acceptance Comes Before Weight Loss


When you see yourself in a mirror, what's the first word that pops into your head? Is it a support thought like “that outfit really looks great on you!” or a destructive one like "Wow! You’ve got the weight going ON! – you look terrible!" If it is the latter, you most likely have poor body-esteem. 


Body esteem is similar to self-esteem. It describes the way you feel about your body and the effect that it has on your overall well-being. If it is poor, you may live your life always trying to beat your body into submission through exercise, diets, constant criticism, and waiting until you lose weight to start living your life fully. 


Here's a secret you may not know. In order to permanently lose weight and achieve your goals, you need to accept the person you are NOW.   


For years I thought I was the ugliest girl in the class because my teeth are really crooked.  My parents couldn’t afford to put braces on my teeth, so I would smile with this distorted smile so that people wouldn’t notice how crooked they were. When our daughter’s teeth were going to be as ugly as mine, I worked really hard to get the money to put those braces on so that she wouldn’t go through the ridicule and taunting remarks that kids so willing hand out at school. When we went to the orthodontist to get her braces, he said to me that he could put braces on my teeth as well.  I was so excited when I got home I told my husband the good news and he looked at me with this shocked looked and asked “whatever for”?  I thought that was the dumbest question because my crooked teeth were so obvious to me.  He looked at me and said that he loved me just as I was and I didn’t need to get my teeth straightened to be beautiful to him! That was the day that I accepted my body and myself and it became OK to be me and smile showing my crooked teeth.! 


You're probably asking, "How can I accept myself when I am not happy with my body?" This is a common question. But consider this -- how has feeling this way and continuing this war with your body worked so far? Your answer will probably be "Not very well." So why not try something new? 


Psychologist Judith Rodin said, "You don't need to lose weight first in order to take care of yourself. In fact, the process actually happens quite in the reverse!" 


Here are a few tips that can help you improve your body esteem: 


1) Become an intuitive eater. Stop dieting! Research has shown only 5 percent of those who diet have any success. This means 95 percent of diets fail. Dr John Tickell said that people loose weight to look good for a special occasion and in less than a year will gain the weight back plus 10%. This up and down - loose and gain is very unhealthy. When you eat healthy food when you are physically hungry and stop when you are full, you release yourself from all the stress, guilt, shame, and restriction that accompany dieting. And by listening to your body's hunger and fullness signals, your body will eventually return to its natural weight-- and stay there. 


2) When you go on a “diet” which means to “die” + “sacrificially” you will feel deprived. Instead of trying to “loose weight”, decide to “discard those unwanted kilos”.  When we loose something we look for it until we find it, (and when it is pounds we always manage to find it where we left it). Rather, to discard is to permanently get rid of something. So, you discard old stuff from the garage that you no longer need! In the same way, see those pounds as something that you no longer need to protect you. 


3) Ask yourself when you are about to eat for emotional reasons:  What else could I do that is beneficial to me? I love myself and I care for myself. Perhaps book yourself a massage, or a manicure or pick up a good book. 


4) Surround yourself with people who appreciate you for who you are and who accept themselves, too! Stop talking about your weight, your diet plan, and what you are eating. Don’t buy magazines with the latest diet in it. 


5) Wear clothes you love and that fit you right now. Get rid of anything in your closet that doesn't fit comfortably. Feeling miserable leads to thoughts of food and shame, which lead to the refrigerator! You then eat to comfort yourself and usually that isn’t nourishing food! You know that your clothes size differs depending on the maker. Don't let a number tell you how to feel about yourself! 


6) Stop comparing yourself to others. Do you find yourself checking your body as you walk by mirrors or store windows? Checking your appearance can prevent self-acceptance by making you overly critical. Don't look at those magazines on the check-out stands either! Comparing your body to others usually results in more self-criticism and body hatred. 


7) Exercise is necessary for your overall health, for relieving stress, and lessening depression. Don’t exercise to loose weight, but rather exercise to have a healthy body. Many forms of exercise can have an effect on the way we feel about our bodies and ourselves. Do exercise to boost your body esteem. Start exercising now. 


8) Drink plenty of water to cleanse the body. This supports you to have a great looking skin, and keeps the body functioning at peak  


What are you waiting for? Start viewing yourself as a wonderfully made woman. You are uniquely made. Your body knows what its needs are. Listen to what's inside and the outside will be transformed! 


girl running on the beach

Go for it — you know you're worth it!




Adversity can strike in anyone’s life and if it does then you have two choices. Either you lay down and wallow in your sadness or you battle through it and head for a better life.  In her book `Why Me` Yvonne Chamberlain gives a person not only the key to handle any adversity that comes their way but also the knowledge and training to live life to the best of their ability.  There is no greater teacher than one who "has been there and done that".  An amazing woman, a brilliant teacher who gives simple easy to follow guidelines to help you achieve your very best.  A simple to read, easy to understand, difficult to put down, must have book. - Bob Daly  


“Congratulations” on your book. Thank you for sharing your very own personal walk, wow, what a ‘life-line’ and ‘help’ this book can be to others and will be to me at this very difficult point in my life.  I have known you for a long time, as a friend, a person who I have looked at and thought, boy I wish I could be as confident as Yvonne, she seems to have it all together. I knew of your cancer and your determination to fight it which you did and won. But I saw that you had a nice husband, family, home etc, it never entered my mind that you could have family issues and that you had already been through many of the struggles that I had. Y our book is showing me so much because I can relate to so many of the things that you have shared about your life.  

Fantastic and thank you. - Gail 


Some feedback I had about the talk last night at BG, Kicking Cancer, etc. with Yvonne Chamberlain. I was doing the banking for BG and chatting with the teller about my family member recovering from cancer. The teller said that a customer before me is still grieving very much over her husband recently being taken by cancer. Last night the customer attended the talk here at BG. She got so much help from the talk that she feels that she will begin to deal better with her grief. If a customer can relate this to strangers then I think that Yvonne must do a great job as a speaker. Just thought I would pass this on. - Kym BG