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zoe & the beatles

just a twenty-something vegan navigating healthy, positive living with a little help from her friends john, paul, ringo & george!

because i have a few.

last night, i ate a pint of tempt hemp milk “ice cream”.

the oatmeal in my bowl is a full half a cup. not 1/4 cup. or 1/3 cup.

i’ve been drinking soy milk, rice milk, and hemp milk lattes like it’s my job.

i just ate more than three servings of cashew butter.

i just ate two servings of dates.

the other night i ate m+m’s for the first time in over a year.

and then i ate a few hershey’s kisses.

i haven’t run in over a week.

my favorite pair of jeans don’t fit.

i’m not sure i feel badly about any of this.

and that, friends, is the truth.

though the m+m indulgence sent me into a mild panic in which i found myself hunched over the toilet contemplating one the worst possible forms of self-harm (it didn’t happen loves. i talked some sense into myself before it did.) and i am currently sitting here feeling slightly guilty, i am not feeling the need to supplement with exercise or with restricting or with more bingeing. i am simply being.

yes, my favorite pair of jeans no longer fit. most people might take this as a sign to reevaluate habits but i am open and honest enough now to acknowledge that i bought these pants in the middle of my year of self-loathing and bad habits. i was smaller a few months ago, yes, but i was also forcing myself to be so. i am slowly seeing that my body is happy at the weight i am at now. i am not forcing it to be here and i look healthy, truly healthy, for the first time in months.

however, i am also open and honest enough to see that that does not excuse the fact that i can down a pint of ice cream in one sitting or toss back three million handfuls of m+ms in one go. these are unhealthy habits that do not respect the body and mind. and i want to respect my body and mind. these habits stem from deep emotional issues not yet explored or, at the very least, not yet explored as intensely as they should be.

i want a lot of things this year. i want to to see myself in the positive light others see me in. i want to be happy and confidence and settled. i want to divorce myself from my bad habits of over-eating and eating for comfort. i want to banish guilt and shame from my life in regards to food forever.

but to do so, i know i need to concentrate on one thing: self-compassion. to heal completely, i must forgive myself and not scrutinize the negative aspects of my person.

in the newest issue of yoga journal (quite possibly my most favorite magazine ever), an entire article was dedicated to the subject of self-compassion. the author offers four tips to cultivate self-love and they are so wonderful, i feel the need to share.

1) LOVE.
acknowledging that you deserve health and happiness, and that you’re worth the effort it takes to make a positive change. remind yourself how the specific change you are making supports your well-being.

2) COMPASSION.
without self-judgement, recognize how the habit you are trying to change creates suffering and stress (including your habit of being hard on yourself). then acknowledge your desire to be free from this suffering.

3) JOY.
give yourself credit for, and celebrate, any positive actions you have taken to support yourself in this change. also, have gratitude for any support you have received from your family and friends.

4) EQUANIMITY
if you are feeling bad about a recent setback, remind yourself that mistakes are only human, and they’re an important part of the path of change. instead of berating yourself, focus on your larger goal to be happy, healthy, and free from suffering.

2011 will be the year i end my suffering. because i am worth it.

what are you changing for yourself this year?

because you’re worth it, too.

namaste.

zoe.

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