February: Be My Valentine

valen1February: Be my Valentine!

Love is in the air and everyone is looking for a partner to make them happy on Valentines.
Have you ever been your own valentine? Have you tried loving yourself and loving your body? When was the last time you looked in the mirror – naked – and loved every inch of your body? Have you ever?

I’d guess most people don’t. Why don’t we love our bodies? We live in them our whole lives and yet we vandalize them regularly. We don’t destroy our brick and mortar homes. Why do we treat our flesh and blood homes with neglect and harm? We can’t trade them in, nor buy new ones. We can pay plastic surgeons to remodel them a bit, but the genes are still the same, and the arteries remain clogged. And no surgeon can clear a negative mind.

So why?

I’d speculate one of many reasons  may be that we don’t have strong healthy boundaries. Think of a boundary as a bubble around you. This


bubble is impenetrable and safe. You get to choose who and what enters your bubble. Everyone outside that bubble makes requests and demands on our time, our energy, wants us to go and do and give. Ads bounce off it, words reverberate and float, but within that boundary we have space, a moment to breathe and decide, “Does this support me? Does this benefit my home?” Maybe even ask, “Would I counsel my best friend or child to say yes to this?” If it’s not a “Heck yeah!” then it’s a “no.” It’s that simple – but not easy. Boundaries take practice, a lot of practice. If we’re lucky, we acquired them as children; if not, we must learn them as adults. Boundaries can feel like rejection if we’ve not grown up with them. They can feel like we are rejecting others when we say no, and when others say no, it can feel like they reject us.

How does this impact your health and fitness? You may end up sacrificing your gym time or cooking time to  satisfy other’s requests. You may allow unhealthy foods into your body that you otherwise wouldn’t eat. But if you can think of the benefit or damage an activity or food has on you, maybe your bubble will start to bounce things off that previously crept in. Maybe your friends and family will notice and learn from your example.

Try pausing before saying yes. Even if you end up giving in, the pause can grow longer, and the choices can become healthier. Maybe you will own your boundaries, choices and their results. Maybe with practice you can breathe and ask each time if this action or request supports your home. Think win-win: If you are healthy, you are better able to keep your family healthy. If you are happy, you’re less likely to snap at your kid(s) when they just want to play. If you are nourished instead of running on caffeine fumes, you will be better able to handle the inevitable hitches in life.
Try reading this statement to yourself every morning, and see if anything improves:

I am responsible for my bubble and everything in my bubble: my body, my mind, my happiness, my attitude, my choices and all their results(positive or negative), my education and training, my relationships (they exist only with my colluding), my job, my career, my debt, my income. If I hand over my responsibility to anyone else, then I also hand over my right to be angry at them about it. I am responsible for owning my emotions.

vale3Ever said, “yes,” and then swallowed hard? You have every right to take back your personal power and learn a new boundary when you feel that “swallow hard” feeling. How free would you feel if you allowed yourself a moment before saying yes. How much more empowered would you be if you chose everything that enters your bubble? The healthy food you might choose, the acceptance of comfort food without the guilt to really enjoy that comfort and then move forward, instead of eating more to cover the guilt. How might your work ethic change? Your workout at the gym might feel a little less like drudgery and a little more like satisfaction at a job well done. Sometimes a little pause allows us to edit our lives and create space. What will you do with your space?


Grace Carter, Personal Trainer
Performance Chiropractic
1055 West Columbia Way, Suite 106
Lancaster, CA 93534
(661) 942-5000