Like most men and women in this day and age, I have spent some time dieting and exercising in that quest to “lose weight”, “get healthy” or “tone up” – I’m sure you can fill in the blank with your own expression. I was pretty lucky, however, that this angst around my body started relatively late in life (my late 20s). Perhaps this is because I grew up around a mother with a very healthy attitude to her weight, so I never saw dieting as normal behaviour.
Negative body image has become a widespread problem among women and is a constant issue that I work on with clients. Did you know 9 out of 10 women dislike their body? This statistic saddens me. Not feeling comfortable in your body has an impact on how you live your life and how you truly feel about yourself. Therefore, having a major impact on your happiness.
I was one of the 9 out of 10 women that disliked their body. I hated my body and didn’t treat it with the respect it deserved. I fell into the trap of dieting, bingeing, emotional eating and over exercising to punish my body. It was such a painful experience filled with such self-hate and shame. I couldn’t live that way anymore, so I set out on a path of self-discovery and healing.
Rose & Willard
As a woman in her (very) late-thirties, I no longer read women’s fashion magazines. I still buy loads of clothes, but I’ve decided these days to be much more thoughtful about the source of my clothing and skip the magazine marketing. The fashion industry should be very wary that their continued use of emaciated teenagers to try to sell me – a grown woman – expensive clothes, has failed miserably. And, unfortunately for them, my increasing intolerance has grown in lock step with my disposable income.
Which is why I was very happy to catch wind of the fact that there are some fashion brands that I can in good conscience buy from. Companies that are taking a stand against the use of unhealthily thin-looking models. I recently had the opportunity to interview Heidy Rehman, founder, and owner of fashion brand Rose & Willard, both over the phone and then in person in front of the women’s networking group at my company.