Body Image, Relationships &Gratitude

Image thanks to

Sometimes I think people put too much pressure on themselves to be of a so called perfect body shape in order to attract a partner.   Those people that I have known who buy into having to be super slim to get a man or a woman to fancy  them, tend to end up with people who are superficial and who only want to see that outer beauty and not the real beauty of a person, the beauty within.  ‘Time stops for no man’ they say and this is so true in regards to the shape of your body.  Bodies change; bodies grow and evolve as we grow older.  They never stay static and believe me, you won’t look the same way you did a 25 when you are 50, so why stress so much about body image, just to land a partner?  In fact, in regards to women and their idea of body image, I haven’t met one man yet who doesn’t think curves rock!  They love them.  It’s only the fashion designers who despise curves.  They need to sell clothing and so they keep the clothes small.  Here in Australia, the average size of a woman is size 12.  That equates to size 8 in the USA and a size 10 in the UK.   This is a healthy weight, a weight range to be happy with and in doing so, you will find that everything changes for you.

When I met my partner, I had put on a little weight because I had gone through a major period in my life full of struggle and hardship and I had become burnt out and depressed.  So I wasn’t exercising as much and food became a comfort for me.  I was a size 14 in Aussie clothing and he still fancied me.  He still liked what he saw and he still wanted to get to know me.  In fact, now I am a little chubbier, because that time of being burnt out made me sedentary and then I ended up with some health issues and I couldn’t get back to the gym.  Guess what?  He’s still here.  With my pot belly and flabby arms, he’s still hanging around.

It’s because he is able to see beyond my imperfections and he realises that I am motivated to change when the time is right and really, if I didn’t care and I was happy with the way I am he’d be happy too.  He just isn’t worried so much, because he thinks curves rock.  He’s not super slim, either.  But I don’t care because when I look at him, I see a beautiful person and I like him just the way he is.

True love transcends all the superficial stuff.  True love doesn’t care that you’ve just had a baby and your belly is a bit floppy and your boobs are huge.  True love doesn’t mind that you have chubby thighs or that your nose has a hook in it.  True love only sees the heart and the heart, personality  compatibility and communication are what make a relationship tick.

I spent many years in my adult life alone, without a partner.  Many of these years were by choice I must admit, because I didn’t want to find I’d made a bad choice and regret entangling my life with someone who was wrong for me.  So when I did meet someone, it meant that I had the perspective of knowing that I have been alone and I like not being alone now.  It means that I never take him for granted.

Relationship in a Rut
Relationship in a Rut: Image thanks to

Too many relationships end up in a rut where each person is going through the motions of the day and they forget to stop and remember why they are with that person and why it is wonderful to have them around.  We get caught up in the rat race too easily and this can take over the joy of the little things.  If you are in a relationship, try and remember to stop and be grateful for the one you are with every day and if you can, let your heart be filled with gratitude that they have chosen to stick around and be with you.  This choice of gratitude will make up some of the glue that keeps you together.  I think it’s also important to put yourself in the other person’s shoes once in a while and to reiterate to them what you have observed.  So that they know that you are thinking of them and that you appreciate their efforts.  This is also important in keeping the relationship glued together.

In doing these things, in loving the body your partner occupies and in loving your own, in accepting the imperfections of each other and in allowing yourself to stop and feel the gratitude for the life you have together, you will not overload your love with demands.  Because love soars when it is not overloaded with demands.  How can a bird fly if it is covered in oil?  Its feathers are overloaded and it cannot take off.  Love cannot fly either if you demand it to be skinny or to earn more money or be more sociable or whatever the issue may be.  If you were to back off from what is annoying and encourage what is wonderful, your love will grow to heights you could never expect or even dream of.

For those of you who are reading this and you are single.  Do not worry, your time will come.  There are billions of people in this world and therefore billions of possibilities for love.  Just remember that you are at your most attractive when you are happy with yourself.  When you have no pressure on yourself to be a certain way.  Just allow yourself to be free.  Of course if your Dr says lose weight, you should do so, but this may be the key to you feeling that freedom.  But if you are chasing perfection, let it go and just love yourself in this moment, for the reasons that brought you here and make the choices to live within that sense of freedom, to find yourself and find the love you deserve, within yourself,  for who you are.  Then, when the time is right, your one true love, may just meet you and a new life together can begin.

Easy to Love You
Easy to Love You: Image thanks to

When you are with The One, that togetherness is easy.  There is no regular tears or fighting, there is no regular dramas or hassles.  There is just the ebb and flow of life and all that entails.  It is a wonderful and fulfilling experience to be with another person who is your best friend, your lover and your confident.  If you have that, never take it for granted, don’t’ place pressure on it and never hold on too tight for fear of losing it either.  Just love it with all your heart and soul.  True love is awesome and I wish for each and every one of you the opportunity to experience it.




Respect – A Foundation of Love

I want to tell you about something that happened to me and my 14yr old son the other day, and why respect plays a part in that. In Australia, my home town is Redcliffe, it’s a seaside village near Brisbane and although I don’t live there anymore, I still go from time to time to conduct business or meet with friends. It’s only a half hour drive from my house. Earlier this week my son and I had gone into Redcliffe to run some errands and we stopped at a cafe for some refreshments once we were done. It was late in the afternoon and most of the shops were shut on the esplanade as we went for a stroll together to get some fresh air. Sitting on the footpath, his back against a shop window, was a man in a wheel chair. An amputee, he had only one leg. He was begging for spare change. He would have been in his 50’s and he smelt like he was homeless. He frightened my son, who has autism, and is not used to seeing people like him…(mainly because of my son’s condition and the fact that we don’t venture out much. He likes to be in his home range.) I could see this was a man who had a story and I felt compassion for him. However, I didn’t give him any of my change. I felt a strong pull in my gut not to. Now I must respect my instincts. Should I go against them, 9 times out of 10, I will regret it later, so I stayed back and I said ‘Sorry, no’. My son was upset with me, but I told him that I donate money to a charity that helps people like him, because I know that anyone could end up in a wheel chair with a spinal injury or an amputation ect. and I like to think, this way I am helping people like this man. I wished him a Merry Christmas and we walked on.

A Beggars Hands
A Beggars Hands - Image thanks to

When I was younger, I gave away my last 5 cents to beggars. But, you don’t tend to see them so much anymore. In Australia, there certainly are homeless people and there are many reasons for that homelessness. I used to know a gentleman who worked in the science museum as the exhibit co-ordinator, who slept in the park, because he couldn’t stand walls around him. There are people who have lost their housing, because the cost of living here is ginormous and there are people who have mental illnesses…these are just some of the reasons. I knew in my gut that this gentleman that day, was looked after and known by those people who care. I could see his clothes were clean and that he had some fat on his bones. He was well fed and he was cared for by someone.
This is an anicdote, not about so much my interaction with the homeless amputee, but about the respect I gave to myself firstly and then to my son and the gentleman. Sometimes, you have to listen to your gut and say no. Sometimes your gut says go for it and you do. My child was afraid and my gut said no. I didn’t speak rudely to the man though. He in turn was not rude towards me.
I expect he will not remember me, but I have thought about him since and I have sent him my feelings of love and hope for his future. Our state of minds place us in situations, be them begging on the street or surfing in the ocean. Our states of minds govern our lives.
Respect and being respectful, is a big foundation of love, because it allows us to interact with each other with more ease. Now there are ways and there are ways of getting respect. You can choose to force others to respect you by using fear. But you will never win their true love, or you can command respect from authority, enforced by a firm but gentle hand, in which case, you will be loved. You can gain respect by proving to yourself and to others that you have what it takes, or you can manipulate the minds of others with lies in order to acquire respect without earning it.
Should you choose the dark path to respect, you will find that the foundation of love will not be there. You will find that once your house of cards has fallen, and it will, you will see that in choosing this path, you firstly disrespected yourself, and then others. You will find that there are consequences to your actions that have a ripple effect going on for a long time afterwards and that will always be something you cannot deny.
Should you choose to gain respect through kindness, loyalty, friendship and authority, you will find that there will be a foundation of love built in your honour. You will be held in genuine esteem and you will be remembered for all the right reasons long after you are gone. People  generally don’t have streets or parks named after them, if they were an abuser of respect. Love and respect go hand in hand.

Respect Yourself First
Respect Yourself First - Image thanks to

Respect always starts with you. If you are disrespecting others, then first and foremost, you are disrespecting yourself, then the other person and then anyone else who may be indirectly involved.
Be aware of your motives and your reasoning for choosing to go ahead with decisions around respect. When you first meet someone, give them respect, if they chose to dishonour that, then remove it from their energy field. Don’t allow yourself to be taken for a ride. Even if someone seems to be in a position of poverty. Have a good look at them. Take it all in. I did, when I saw that gentleman, I knew the area and I know that it is full of church groups just bursting with love for people like him. I could see he was fed well and his clothes were clean.
Self love, also involves self respect. So respect starts with the way you view you. Others will pick up on it too, and most will afford you respect simply because they can see you respect yourself.
What do we do if someone is disrespecting us?
Well that is a topic for another Spiritual comment.