There’s an awesome dialogue about health and wellness and whole-ness going on here. After reading it I feel enlightened. And embarrassed. Why? Because the concept of fat talk is something I never thought about.
My personal philosophy on life embraces kindness to self and others as its overarching value. My education in counseling taught me about encouraging strength in people. Yet I had never considered the impact of my internal and external dialogue about weight. How many times have I thought or said things like, those three miles I ran this morning totally off-set that cinnamon bun I just ate? How many jokes have I made about my beer belly? How much have I talked about the fact that the apple I ate is totally counteracting that chocolate bar? Or lamented I’m so bloated?
This was never directed at others, always at myself (though I’m sure I haven’t contradicted others when they have uttered these phrases about themselves). But why is this the dialogue? Why not say instead: I’m so proud of myself for running three miles today. Or damn that was a good cinnamon bun/beer/apple/chocolate bar. Or I should probably drink some water; that creamy soup didn’t sit so well.
Even more important for my dialogue to change since my professional role involves being a trusted resource for college students. And while I am appalled at this counselor’s terrible response to a serious situation and can’t imagine what would possess someone to say that, I can’t ignore my own vocabulary.
So I pledge to be more aware. To stop the fat talk. To start instead the health talk. The wellness talk. The whole-ly, beautifully, uniquely me and you talk.