When Meghan Trainor came on the scene with her hit, “It’s All About the Bass,” denouncing those that would judge another because of their weight, we were all in enthusiastic agreement. To be honest, though, we size people up every day based on all kinds of things from how much money we make to where someone attends college. Retailers devote a lot of their budget to find out where you shop and what drives your shopping choices. We answer questions everyday about people using our inferential powers, so what can you do when someone labels you “fat” or “overweight”? There may not be anything you can do about how others treat you according to the way you look, but what if you could respond in a positive way?
Answer the following questions to find out if you’re affected by how others see you:
1. Have you ever tried on an outfit that you loved on the rack until you put it on and decided it’d look better on someone else?
2. Have you ever declined that first helping of dessert because everyone else at the table was thinner than you?
3. Have you ever thought about putting something important or fun off until you lose some weight?
If you answered “yes” to any or all of the questions, it might be time for a change, but not the kind you’re thinking about.
We’ve all heard stories of someone who lost the weight they’d been hoping to lose for a long time, only to find they were just as unhappy as they were before they lost the weight? How realistic is it to think that making a change on the outside could change how we feel on the inside that much? If you want to be truly happy, try making these changes instead.
Don’t look to others to make you happy; they’ll always let you down. Have you held onto resentment, anger, hurt and bitterness because of what another person said or did to you? Do forgive and forget, and you’ll begin to help you heal by replacing those feelings with something positive like treating others with kindness. By praising another person or just listening to them, you gain power, and you may gain another friend.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Most of what we worry about are either things that won’t matter in a day or next week, or they’re things we can’t change. Do give thanks. Keep a gratitude journal where you write down exactly what you’re grateful for each day. Doing so helps you maintain stress, gives you happier moods and greater optimism.
You may say, “You wouldn’t believe the problems I face.” But, you’ll always have failures in life, that’s a given. You can change the way you see them. Don’t make excuses by blaming others for your problems; doing so means you’ll unlikely be able to overcome them. Happy people take responsibility for their mistakes. Why not see your problem as a challenge to make a positive change in your life?
It’s true, there are some things out of your control. But, focus on the things you can. Waking up at the same time every morning enhances productivity and focus, especially if you’re taking the time to pray and meditate. Eating well by avoiding junk foods or processed foods can prime your body and brain to be in a focused, happy state. When I’m grocery shopping, I keep in mind that the healthier foods are found along the walls of the store. Shop for fruits and vegetables, dairy and cheese, and meats and seafood around the perimeter of the store. Exercising every day will enhance your frame of mind and reduce stress. By doing something you know makes you healthier, your can’t help by becoming happier!