I love listening to talk radio in the mornings. Like the early early mornings 7am and earlier – on my way to see clients.
It’s one of those “guilty pleasures” although I feel no guilt about it. So, it’s one of my pleasures.
Z100, 95.5 are two of my favorites. Though Z100 has a soft spot in my heart because I have been listening since I was a teenager. Wow!
And I do listen to news on occasion but when it’s this early (we are talking in the car by 5:45am some mornings) I need to keep it light. I want to hear my horoscope and how the Shaun Mendes concert was last night.
Something I notice is that when they take breaks on the radio they often segue into a segment about “I’m using this fabulous product for body contouring. This body contouring product gives me confidence and makes me happy!”
I don’t blame the DJs. They are simply doing their job. And usually I turn down the volume or flip to another channel because: listening to this does not serve me.
Also, in my head I am saying:
People: body contouring alone is not the quick fix that’s gonna make you happy people
What I want to do sometimes (in my little dream world in my head) is this:
Call into the station and start talking about how body contouring or going on a diet and losing weight might give you confidence … but it’s temporary.
The only way the confidence and joy and happiness will stick is if you do the inner work.
These qualities we want in life, they’re an inside job. They do not come from our external circumstances or conditions.
While we might feel extremely excited and happy when we get a dog – the excitement wears off if we aren’t truly committed to accepting and loving the whole dog experience unconditionally. We can’t sign up for a dog just to snuggle with us when we are feeling blue. We have to commit to it all: the daily walks, picking up poop, training the dog, taking it to the vet.
We have to commit to accepting and loving the whole human experience unconditionally. The highs and lows. The fuck-ups and the accomplishments. The stability and instability. The joy and the pain. The growth and the loss.
The way I see it, I have three ways I can respond to these radio ads:
- Be convinced that yes, I do need to change the way my body looks in order to feel good. Period.
- Get angry. Get angry that these ads perpetuate the judgment and hate that permeates so much of our society.
- See it as an opportunity. It’s an opportunity to see the contrast: they are telling me one thing and I’m just like “Nope. Actually I like that my left thigh has that little dimple in it. I don’t even care about my thighs looking smooth and seamless anymore. Or the rest of my body. I want all the shapes and dents and dimples… all of them. I actually feel really good in my body.” And so forth. This is the new story. And i can go on with it. For a long, long time.
In total honesty, I sometimes do get angry. But if I stay angry, that’s choosing my old story and I’m already living the new one. So I don’t want to linger in the old anger story for too long.
In fact, I stay there less and less and it gets easier to move from #2 to #3. Or jump right to #3.
It took me years to get over not being perfect. And I’m not just talking about my body. I’m talking my clothes, my writing, my vocabulary, my education, anything you can think of – I was severely judgmental toward myself. I was convinced that if I wasn’t happy all the time, I was failing. I believed that if I was angry or jealous or sad or did anything imperfectly, I was failing.
I used to feel so sad that I wasn’t something else. I used to feel disappointed that I wasn’t anything other than myself.
And now … now I wouldn’t want to be anything other than myself. Even on the dark days. Even where there is struggle.
I take myself. I love myself no matter what.
For anyone out there who hears these radio ads (or any other messages from media or society telling you that your body needs to be a different way in order to be accepted/happy/confident) and jumps to #1 … I encourage you to explore the inner work first.
There’s no rush. Just check in and see what happens.
If you’d like some guidance on getting to the inner work, please fill out my contact form and we can set up a call.