For so many years I believed that I was fat. Not just a little bit fat but hideously fat.
To show you how deluded I was here is a photo of me in the prime of my dance career. I sincerely thought the girl standing next to me was beautiful and had an amazing body and that I was so fat and ugly beside her.
That photo was taken on my 24th birthday. I am the one on the left. When I view that photo now I can see how deluded I was and that in actual fact, there was nothing wrong with me.
I had a bad case of comparison paralysis. I was comparing myself to her and finding myself lacking and it affected all of my relationships – the one with myself mostly, but also my relationships with men and other women who I saw as competition.
If you compare an apple with an orange you are going to find that one or the other is lacking too, depending on what it is that you are focusing your attention on. An apple is a crunchy experience, whereas an orange is a juicy one. Both can be juicy, but an orange most definitely should never be crunchy. So an orange will always be found wanting if it is compared to an apple in terms of crunchiness.
So too, when I was comparing my shorter limbs with her longer limbs. I was not comparing like with like. I was comparing two disparate objects that could never be the same, no matter how hard I worked to grow mine and she worked to shrink hers. So it was a mute exercise and really only ended up in me harming myself.
Had I really understood this I could have been celebrating our difference instead of being eaten up with self-hatred and envy.
So I guess the message here is that we all can choose to befriend our bodies, to stop the war on ourselves and to learn to live at peace with our own unique selves.
One of the tactics that I have found to conquer envy or any other damaging emotion in my relationship with others, is to do the opposite of what that emotion is trying to get me to do. Envy and jealousy want me to move away from and/or to dislike the other person. So when I feel this way I have moved closer and deliberately befriended the person. In so doing, I have destroyed that negative emotion.
This has been a very good tactic in my life, so I share it with you. Love and kindness break down so many negative walls I find.