Archive for October, 2011

Body Image Booster: How To Take Care Of Yourself

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Philly flowers

Tomorrow marks the second year that I’ve been writing Weightless. To celebrate, I thought we’d reminisce a bit. So I’m sharing my first-ever Monday body image-boosting post, which debuted on January 11, 2010. Hope you find it helpful, and it starts your week off on a nice note! And thanks so much to everyone for reading, commenting and coming back!

Body image goes beyond your weight, size and silhouette. “Body image can change based on what you do each day and how your body functions.

It’s important to widen your definition to include more than just your appearance,” writes Ann Kearney-Cooke in her book, Change Your Mind, Change Your Body.


4 Ways To Truly Love Yourself

Friday, October 28th, 2011

creative joy retreat, 2012, hearts

Yesterday, we talked about a practical way (thanks to Therese!) to build a solid and positive self-image. Today, let’s talk about other ways to cultivate love and confidence in your inner core.

The first year Weightless was born, I spoke with Christine Arylo about what it means to truly love yourself. Arylo founded the movement Madly In Love with ME and wrote the book Choosing ME Before WE: The Everywoman’s Guide to Life and Love.


You’re More Than Your Belly, Butt & Breasts: Building A Self-Esteem File

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

NYC Oct 2012

In our society, our physical appearance gets top billing. That’s why so many people focus so hard on wanting to be thin or muscular or whatever. We assume that a societally-acceptable appearance will bring us more confidence.

We’ll lose a few pounds and suddenly gain a backbone and a better self-image. We’ll have super-strength self-esteem, impervious to insults, cruel remarks, stress and anything else unpleasant and hurtful.

But we know this idea is pure fairytale. Because how you feel about yourself can’t be dependent on something as fleeting and on-the-surface as body size or weight.


The Impact Of “Fat Talk” On Kids & What Parents Can Do

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

{via pinterest}

Last week was “Fat Talk Free Week.” Today I wanted to continue the conversation because it’s so common for people to bash their bodies. And now it’s become common for kids and teens to do so, too…and at younger and younger ages.

Below, Elizabeth Easton, PsyD, clinical director of child and adolescent services at the Eating Recovery Center, discusses whether fat talk is a new phenomenon, its effect on kids, how parents can help and much more.


Boosting Your Body Image With Mindfulness

Monday, October 24th, 2011

Every Monday features a tip, activity, inspiring quote or some other tidbit that helps boost your body image, whether directly or indirectly — and hopefully kick-starts the week on a positive note!

Got a tip for improving body image? Email me at mtartakovsky at gmail dot com, and I’ll be happy to feature it. I’d love to hear from you!

Mindfulness, or paying full attention to the present, is a valuable practice that can help you cultivate a positive body image. Your True Home: The Everyday Wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh, compiled and edited by Melvin McLeod, offers 365 insights to help readers “train to meet every moment of life with 100 percent attention.”


Self-Worth, Spirituality & How We Spend Our Days: Part 3 With Ellen Frankel

Friday, October 21st, 2011

This is the last part of my interview with eating disorder expert Ellen Frankel. Frankel is the co-author of The Diet Survivor’s Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care and Beyond a Shadow of a Diet: The Therapist’s Guide to Treating Compulsive Eating.

Recently, she published the novel Syd Arthur about one woman’s search for true contentment after years of living by diet rules, calorie counts and scale results.

Below, we talked more about her novel, how readers have reacted and what she’d like people to take away from her book.

What really struck me in this interview was Frankel’s emphasis on how we spend our days (in the second question). Years ago, I spent my days being miserable, bashing my body, feeling guilty about eating, consuming tasteless foods (and still feeling bad) and feeling stressed-out and tense — with a very shaky self-worth.

While I know these thoughts and behaviors aren’t entirely under our control (there’s that complicated combo of genetics, parenting, environment, certain stressors, etc.), we can choose to do something about them. We can toss our scales, stop buying diet foods and cookbooks, engage in physical activities we truly enjoy, learn about healthy ways to alleviate anxiety, and focus our attention on bigger and better things (like our passions, loved ones and the beauty of nature).

If you haven’t read them yet, here’s part one and part two of our interview. I’m incredibly grateful to Frankel for taking the time to share her book and insight with readers!

You can learn more about Ellen Frankel and her work at her website.


The Fantasy Of Weight Loss & Finding True Fulfillment: Part 2 With Ellen Frankel

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Today, I’m sharing part two of my interview with the amazing and always insightful Ellen Frankel, LCSW, who’s specialized in the treatment and prevention of eating disorders for over 15 years. She’s also author of the recently published novel Syd Arthur (see the synopsis below).

Here, Frankel talks about the common belief that weight loss will complete a person’s life, how to cultivate a healthier relationship with food and the meaning of true contentment – something that the main character, Syd, searches for in Frankel’s book.

Stay tuned tomorrow for the last part of our interview. (Check out part one if you haven’t already!)


A Novel About The Pursuit Of Thinness & Something Greater: Q&A With Ellen Frankel

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

I’m incredibly honored to present my interview with Ellen Frankel, LCSW, who’s specialized in the treatment and prevention of eating disorders for over 15 years. Now a full-time writer, Frankel is author of the recently published novel Syd Arthur about a woman entrenched in the diet and thinness-equals-happiness mentality who finally starts searching for something more meaningful in her life.

If you remember, Frankel is also co-author of the excellent book The Diet Survivor’s Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care. I interviewed Frankel and her co-author and sister Judith Matz for Weightless (Part 1, 2 and 3).

Today, in part one of our interview, Frankel talks about what inspired her to write a novel, the impact of fat-talking and how we can stop. In Syd Arthur, the main character Syd along with her closest friends regularly complain about their supposed flaws and vow to diet together. This week is actually Fat Talk Free Week, so the topic couldn’t be more relevant.

Plus, so many of us can relate to bashing our bodies, whether out loud or in our minds. We also make fat-talking a friendly affair.

(By the way, like my friend and fellow blogger Anna Guest-Jelley, I wish that “fat” was used in a neutral way.)

Also, at the end of the Q&A, there’s a fun synopsis of Syd Arthur. Stay tuned for part two of our interview tomorrow, where Frankel talks more about dieting, weight and our culture.


15 Ways To Love Your Body

Monday, October 17th, 2011

tulips

Every Monday features a tip, activity, inspiring quote or some other tidbit that helps boost your body image, whether directly or indirectly — and hopefully kick-starts the week on a positive note!

Got a tip for improving body image? Email me at mtartakovsky at gmail dot com, and I’ll be happy to feature it. I’d love to hear from you!

October 19th is Love Your Body Day. To celebrate this upcoming occasion, I’m sharing 15 ideas for appreciating, respecting, taking care of and loving your body year-round.


When Do You Feel Best In Your Body?

Friday, October 14th, 2011

Amelia Island, bikes at b&b

Back in July, I interviewed the incredible Amy Pershing, LMSW, director of the Pershing Turner Centers in Annapolis, and clinical director for the Center for Eating Disorders in Ann Arbor.

When I asked her about powerful ways to boost our body image, she said something that especially caught my attention:

One thing I like to do is think about the times you were really enjoying being “in” your body, with no judgment about how it looked. Might be dancing, running, curling up on the couch, anything. Do that, and see the difference between being “in” and looking “at.” Try to shift to more being “in” your body. Find time in some small way (or a big way!) as often as you can.


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