I was recently scanning the channels on late night TV when a commercial caught my eye. Usually I don’t pay attention to these kind of commercials, but when you see a train wreck you just have to watch, right, its human nature. Anyway, it was for some horrible food program (Nutrisystem), and the overly excited and obviously photo-shopped spokesperson (Janet Jackson) raises her hands above her freshly coiffed head and obnoxiously proclaims “this is what success looks like!” It was just so ridiculous and, I’m sorry, but completely not true. Success, at least to me, does not mean I must look as if I am a photo shopped Janet Jackson. Janet Jackson is not a role model of mine and her adherence to an expensive food delivery slash brainwashing “diet” is not ever going to be a motivating factor in my recovery.
To me success is this: (not necessarily in order of importance)
-having a healthy relationship with both food and myself
-living at peace with myself and my body
-recognizing and understanding hunger cues
-allowing myself to feel emotions
-eating when I’m hungry and stopping when I’m not
-being honest with myself and others (in all aspects of my life, not just with eating)
-asking for extra help when I need it
-eating a variety of foods
To me, success must just be measured differently. To me, success is a state of mind, not a dramatic “look at me world, and see how awesome I am” as the spokesperson would lead me to believe. To me, success is feeling good about myself, my food choices, and my body. My success is not dependent on what some actress/singer/MJ’s sister is paid to tell me on late night TV. My success is not measured by what this woman thinks of me. Success is different for each and every person–for each person is fighting their own battle. Success is not the universal be all end all that this commercial would have you to believe. So, I challenge you to think about what success with beating your ED means to you or would look like to you…focus on that…and tell the dumb photo-shopped spokeswomen of the world to shove it.