How To Build Body Confidence After Gaining Weight
I get it. You have your own demons and battles around food, weight, body image, and self-confidence. You have your own journey dealing with these too. But if you gain weight, no matter how much progress you have made on your journey, it can feel like a huge step backwards. So do you build body confidence after gaining weight?
I think you may need to start by looking at the positives of weight gain.
Why Did You Gain Weight In The First Place?
It’s drilled into us through some general force and perception in society that thinner is better and weight loss is good. So of course we assume weight loss is bad.
But that isn’t true.
If you’re trying to create a healthier relationship with food and escape diet culture, it may happen. You are allowing your body to find its own feelings of nourishment.
If you are recovering from an eating disorder, it may happen. Your body is probably grateful for getting the nutrition it needs after spending a while being deprived and undernourished.
If you are going through a lot of physical or mental stress, it may happen. If you find some comfort in food while just trying to cope, then so be it. There is more to life, and you have a greater purpose than what the scales and your jeans say.
Sometimes we need to allow ourselves some slack there to deal with bigger things.
Anyway, the point I am trying to make is that weight gain isn’t always a bad thing. I completely get that feeling of anger, frustration, and shame when the scales go up. It is something I am still battling with too.
But in a lot of cases, it may happen as a side effect of you actually doing something right, not something to feel guilty or ashamed of.
How Do You Turn That Into Body Confidence?
I once stepped on the scales and I had gained exactly 0.5kg. That is honestly the difference of a bottle of water.
But I spent the rest of the day feeling like I had actually gained 10kg or more and it massively affected my mood and my motivation to look after myself.
I’m telling you this because I want you to know that I understand it is much easier to say the below than it is to actually practice it. It’s one of my own battles and one I fight on a daily basis.
But what it comes down to really is reminding yourself what your main priority is, and focusing on that as your priority.
Let me dial it back to the examples I gave above.
Did you gain weight because you went out and enjoyed a meal with your partner without banning any foods?
Great! You got to create a memorable experience with loved ones and get out of old, toxic habits which could be harming your health.
Did you gain weight because you are consciously trying to eat more as you battle an eating disorder?
Maybe that’s a good thing. Your body is being nourished and receiving something it isn’t used to. The great thing with our bodies is that the better we look after them, the better they look after us.
Are you dealing with a lot of stress, and resorting to eating and drinking for comfort?
Like I already said, you have a greater purpose in life than just being a certain jeans size or scale weight. That does mean life throws ups and downs at us.
When your priorities are elsewhere, there is nothing wrong with finding comfort so you can focus on whatever is weighing on your mind.
Remember This For Body Confidence After Gaining Weight
It’s always worth remembering that weight is never permanent and is always changing. That applies to both weight loss AND weight gain.
If it is genuinely causing you distress, then depending on your own specific circumstances it may be a good call to speak to a dietitian or hire a coach to help you out.
But before that, look at your weight gain in context. If it is part of a bigger plan or a bigger purpose then that’s not a bad thing. Maybe you’re just levelling up with the right fuel source.