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Do you always wear long sleeves out of fear of showing your arms? Are you worrying about how you sit on a chair because of how your legs might look? Do you use your arms to cover your belly every beach trip? Do you get frustrated every time you look at the mirror and see that you haven’t got smoother skin, a flatter belly or more toned arms?

You are not alone. I have spent most of the last 20 years being obsessed with my belly. The way it looks has been on my mind every day. From the moment I woke up to the time I went to bed. I used to feel a wave of frustration every time I caught a glimpse of my belly in the mirror or simply when looking at it.

Talking about this openly is not easy because I spent the better part of 20 years trying to hide my belly as well as shame of my own belly. This one body part that has always been on my mind. Constantly taking up mental capacity and space as well as energy.

Overcoming body frustration

Understanding your situation

Through the work I do in the holistic body program, I have come to understand that a lot of women have at least one body part that they obsess over. For some it is the arms, for others it is cellulite on their legs, for some it is the thighs or even their face or nose. Or like me their belly.

This obsession is very futile and has no correlation with the actual appearance of the body part. I have seen women obsess over their thighs, thighs I would have killed for – metaphorically. However, for them the obsession, frustration and disgust is as real as it was for me and my belly.

Like with any fixation, you create some kind of identity and comfort zone around this struggle and obsessive thinking. When you have become so used to think and worry about something for decades, it has become a habit, even an identity. Your brain as literally been wired to think about your *name body part here*. It is stronger than you and it is a subconscious pattern of your brain. A pattern we want to break.

You have also attached a whole bunch of meanings and emotions to this body part. You might feel frustrated every time you look at it or start to feel fear. You think that it makes you less pretty and less lovable. All these emotions are just attachments you made to them and we want to remove those attachment to return to a more neutral or loving response.

Why being overly preoccupied with a body part is not necessarily helpful?

  1. It is mental space you are giving up. You put so much energy in worrying about that body part, energy you can’t use for something else. All these thought’s that go towards it, could be used for something else. And yes thoughts are a form of energy too. Especially negative ones can be very exhausting if it’s a lot of them a lot of the time.
  2. Without overcoming the obsession, you will never be fully happy with your results – you will continue to seek more results, fear losing them or maybe even never achieve them.
  3. It makes you feel uncomfortable. Because you attached meanings and emotions to the way this body part looks. It is a constant reminder of your frustration, fear and overwhelm. Why would you chose to continue living with this kind of reminder?
  4. Energy flows where attention goes. From an energy perspective you want to feel good in your body now. Even before you look the way you think will make you to feel sexy, good and healthy. The sight of your body causing frustration and disgust will cause even more frustration and disgust.

Focussing on it won’t make it change any faster on the contrary. So why would we consciously chose to continue that pattern? This is why you are here, reading this article and become more knowledgeable.

In the end, if this body part makes you feel bad why would you not try to change that on all levels – maybe the physical if something feels aligned and not out of fear, but most importantly on the emotional level and the subconscious level.

Before we dive into the tools to heal your obsession I would like to remind you that accepting something and working on releasing your attachment and emotions to it, does not mean you have or will give up on your dream. By giving the obsession up, you bring your desire to have a flat belly, toned legs and strong arms into reality faster.

Tool N°1 – uncovering the root cause

There is a reason why you picked this specific part of your body to obsess over. There might be a specific event from your past. An experience that started the unfolding of events up until where you are now. It can be a role model who had a similar obsession with that body part, a connexion you made as a child or an opinion you were given when you were younger. It can be insignificant to your conscious mind but to your young self it is very real and scary. Your subconscious mind knows exactly what the root cause is, your work is to remember it and to reparent your inner-child in that situation.

How do you access your subconscious memory, you may ask? There are different ways and the most important is to relax and trust whatever is coming up to be exactly what you need to know in this moment:

  • Free hand journal on all experiences linked to your body part. Go back as much as you can. Just don’t question what is coming up. Just write them down. See how far you can go back

  • Use EFT – Emotional Freedom Tapping – I have found it quite useful to get to the root cause of a belief when my subconscious mind is too good at disguising. There are many free resources on the internet about EFT. I think there is no right or wrong way to do it. I recommend you start tapping the following points and say phrases intuitively. Let me give you an example of what that could sound like: This obsession is not serving me, This obsession is uncomfortable, It is holding me back and I am no longer ready to let that happen, It is safe to let that obsession go, It is not a nice feeling, I know there is a root cause to this obsession and I am willing to remember now, I am also willing to let it go now, I used to feel like this when my grandma said …

Keep tapping on the points one after another. Continue for as many rounds as you need. Just relax. Feel the feelings and let your subconscious mind guide you to the answer.

If you would like to know more about tapping and creating your dream body, I can highly recommend Tara Brunet’s Podcast!

  • Work with a hypnotherapist, someone trained in TIME Techniques or any other modalities that can help access the unconscious. If you would like to have help with that, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Contact me

Tool N°2 – Emotional release

As you have heard the emotional attachment is key to releasing the obsession. We can’t have you have a breakdown almost every time you see your cellulite or your belly rolls. It is time to release the unnecessary emotional baggage and return you to neutrality – eventually we want to return to a state of love but this might be a step that is too big for now. That’s okey. Every step is progress.

To release any stuck emotions, it is important to give those emotions room and to feel them. I have written a whole blog post only dedicated to that. To the blog post

Emotional work can be intense, if you need support please reach out to me or a certified coach or professional. You are not alone and there is help if you need it.

Tool N°3 – body forgiveness

It is also time to forgive your body to be a certain way. Work through every body part and forgive it for being the way it is. Thank it for all the work it is doing even with your verbal abuse. Apologies for your role in this situation because you do have your responsibilities to own up to. Finish by saying I love you. Or maybe: I am learning how to love you.

Message me “body forgiveness” to receive a free copy of the forgiveness practice.

Tool N°4 – Pattern interrupt

As a teenager I watched Scream and I was terrified. Actually, I was terrified of all horror movies and could not sleep for days. When I watched the movie Scream, I rewired my brain. Up until this day, when I go to public bathrooms with the thin walls, I am aware that Scream could be in the stall next to me trying to stab me. While in the past I was scared to take the middle stall because of this reason, I can now go to any but I still every single time think of the stabbing from the movie. The wiring in my brain of the stimuli (the bathroom stall) and the response (thinking of the movie) is not attached to any feelings anymore and there for in this case not limiting anymore.

When it comes to your body part obsession, it might however be valuable to completely get rid of that wiring. In order to do so, it might be interesting to you to play with pattern interrupts, to cut or stop the wiring between the stimulus and the thoughts.

  1. Catch yourself thinking about the body part.
  2. Change the thinking. Do something completely unknown. Maybe say “Hey body part” instead of you look so ugly! Maybe you choose a catch phrase or word to interrupt the pattern. Maybe you decide to start dancing to change your physical chemistry. Play around with it and see what works best
  3. EFT might also be a great pattern interrupt – just start tapping and chose thoughts that are serving you
  4. Move the focus outwards. Instead of having a single focus narrowed down to one body part – consciously move out outwards to your whole body and list 3 things you like about it.

If you desire more ways to interrupt the pattern, you can book a call here.

Tool N°5 – Make the journey pleasurable

Start enjoying your body and the journey to your ideal body now. Don’t expect everything to be just all loving and fuzzy when you get there. Because it simply won’t. Start wearing clothes you feel good in now. I am not talking about wearing a big hoodie and baggy pants to hide your body, but clothes that make you feel sexy, healthy and glamorous. Invest in new pair of jeans if all you have is old ones you don’t fit in anymore.

Again, just because you decide to accept where you are now, does not mean you are condemned to stay in this shape.

So what clothes have you been holding onto that made you feel even more uncomfortable with your *add the body part* and go find some new pieces that make you feel the way you want to feel. Ones that flatter your silhouette and make you almost like the body part you are overthinking about.

Also, set up a ritual to take care of this body part. Give it loving attention instead of hateful attention. Maybe massage it every day. Maybe just saying nice words or even the body forgiveness practice from above.

A few ending words

Body obsession has been a huge part of my life and is something that took me quite some time to figure out. And honestly my mind sometimes still focuses on my belly. But We have come a long way and we will get even further into healing. Just writing this article has been very healing in itself.

While i gave you some valuable tools that were very helpful, there is one thing that was unavoidable and essential: Self-compassion. Make it a priority all day and every day! Only then will you be able to welcome more body positivity and a healthy relationship with your body.

I believe this post will grow and adapt over time and new tools will be added to it as I learn even more about this with my clients and myself.

If you feel called by the holistic way, my 9 weeks 1:1 coaching container to heal your body, weight and relationship with it, click the link below to have a chat with no strings attached.

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