Introducing Bella

I have a new best friend.

Well, technically, I’ve always had her, I just didn’t appreciate her. In fact, I think it’s pretty fair to say that I loathed her (Sorry, Bella).

I have been working with spiritual weight loss coach, Andrea Albright, for almost a year now. If you recall, she was the one that convinced me to throw away the scale.

It was also on her advice that I examined the possibility that I may have a food allergy (or several as it turned out). And it’s been her voice that I listen to in my car everyday, telling me how important it is to love my body.

In addition to her general weight loss program, she also has a audio course specifically on losing belly fat, and in the very first disc, she invites you to rub your hands together to make sure they’re nice and warm and to lay them on your belly and say (out loud): I love you.

The first time I heard that, I laughed (out loud). And I most certainly didn’t do it. The reason I didn’t (or so I said) is because I was driving. But in reality, I just couldn’t stomach it – no pun intended. I didn’t love my belly. I hated it. (Again, sorry Bella).

Why is it important to love your belly?

Well, the more you love something, the better care you take of it.

And the more that you love something, the better care it takes of you.

When you love your belly, you’re no longer at war with your body, which means, by definition, that you are also no longer at war with yourself.

When you love your belly (or whatever part of your body with which you’re chronically dissatisfied) you eliminate a lot of negative self-talk from your life automatically.

It’s also important to love your belly (and every part of your body) because no matter what shape your belly (or your body) is in currently, she’s an amazing being. Just think about it: where would you be without her?!

One of the things that I learned from listening to Andrea is that this truly is the only body I have and will ever have. And though that seems incredibly simple, getting that – at a deep level – changes everything. Your body is always going to be with you. Your body is your most significant relationship – it is the true ’til death do us part.

When this finally clicked, everything changed. And I do mean everything.

All of a sudden that big fat belly that I used to focus on (and fixate on) with loathing and disgust became the part of my body that deserved the most attention, the most respect, and, believe it or not, the most love.

The first thing I did to rehabilitate my relationship with my belly was to stop referring to it as an it. And, as I’m sure you guessed, by now, named her.

Let me introduce you to my belly, Bella.

Now, you may be wondering, Why Bella?

No, this isn’t some weird Twilight thing!

One, Bella is close to belly.

Two, it means beautiful.

So, now whenever I look at my belly or think about it, I automatically associate the word beautiful with it. My beautiful belly. In fact, whenever I see myself in a full length mirror, I simply say hello to Bella, as I would any good friend.

Again, ‘Hello Beautiful.”

I know this sounds silly, but my entire orientation to my belly (and, in fact, my entire body!) has changed.

It’s a wonderful feeling to look in the mirror and like what you see. In fact, it’s something that until this last couple of weeks, I’d never before experienced.

So, why does it work?

One of the things that I’ve learned from working with different weight loss coaches, is that you should treat yourself (and your body) like you’re (she’s) your own best friend. When you do that, it becomes impossible to beat yourself up. I mean, think about it: when is the last time you told your best friend that she was a big, fat slob, an abject failure, or destined to be fat for the rest of her life?

I would imagine that if you can actually remember a time, it was probably right before you lost that best friend forever! Bottom line is that you just wouldn’t do it.

So why is it that most women look in the mirror and say those things to themselves every day – if not every hour of every day?

I can’t explain to you in writing how much my life has shifted with this one little thing. I truly love my belly. Now that I have named her, I am more likely to touch her and wrap my arms around her, much like I would a beloved child. I am more likely to mind my posture and and to engage in deep breathing as I am more aware of how this affects her. And just yesterday, while out shopping for t-shirts, I was much more likely to blame the cut of the shirt than my belly!

So, instead of thinking automatically, my stomach looks terrible in this, I literally (and seamlessly) found myself thinking: this shirt doesn’t look good on Bella. Or, better yet, Bella does not like this shirt.

For those of you who have ever stood underneath the florescent lights of dressing room beating yourself up, you know what a miraculous shift this kind of thinking is. And if you can’t imagine it, just try it.

It seems like such a tiny, silly, easy thing, but it’s been the most significant change I’ve made so far.

Seriously. If you have a love-hate (or even a hate-hate) relationship with your body or belly, change it. It doesn’t take much…just a little imagination and a willingness to treat your body with the same respect you’d most likely treat anyone upon whose life yours depended.

I’ll let that sink in. And in the meantime, Bella and I are going out to enjoy the sun!

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3 comments so far

  1. Andrea Albright on

    Kathryn, this is so beautiful! I love the idea of naming your body parts in sexy, foreign words that mean beautiful… how perfect!

    You’ve taken this to a higher level. I can hear your love for your body and Self radiating out of you. Keep on shining, girl!

    Love and Light,
    Andréa

  2. KJ on

    Thank YOU, Andrea!

    I feel like I’m finally there. I was close when we talked last week, but since then there’s been a HUGE shift.

    Yours (with immense gratitude),
    Kathryn

  3. […] my 4s – for the most part and my 6s, comfortably), but it’s clear that the belly (aka Bella) has taken on a life of her […]


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