Last night I had the opportunity to attend ‘SmashTALK’ a panel discussion with local field experts to educate and increase awareness with topics such as eating disorders, body image, negative self talk, authenticity and media dangers. It was their one year SMASH Anniversary and as luck would have it they were in town at the nearby LSU campus. Their message is a strong one: “We are creating a better world TOGETHER. Never underestimate the power you have within YOU. Love others and most of all DARE to LOVE Yourself. Be the change you want to see. “
Why is something so simple yet so difficult? Even at age 40 I have yet to have it all together. I struggle to feel worthy, to feel good enough. I know I am a strong, independent woman yet I am vulnerable to the number on the scale. I worry that my daughter will struggle with a relationship with food as I did as a kid and even now I still struggle.
Some highlights from the discussion last night:
• Be more aware of what keeps you down.
• It does not have to be an “All or Nothing” approach. Moderation is key
• You don’t have to live up to the unobtainable level of perfection. Trust in yourself. Say to yourself “This is who I am!”
• Be proud to connect with others. Don’t hold yourself back. Don’t compare yourself to others.
• Surround yourself with UPLIFTING people.
• Change the conversation when someone near you is bashing themselves. Don’t contribute or react. Be Sincere. Be a Role Model
Another big topic last night was Media Influences:
Media images are everywhere from sidebar ads on Facebook, Pinterest images on how we “should” look plus what we see in magazines and television. A couple images in particular are how popular cartoon characters have changed over the years:
When I got home my 13 year old daughter asked me what I learned and I shared my notes with her. She tells me: “Mom, you know all of that already. Your story inspires me.” Wow, jaw drops, heart swells…I think to myself: “ I guess I am doing something right.” Earlier that night I asked McCall Dempsey the founder of Southern Smash and blogger of “Loving Imperfection” http://mccalldempsey.com/ What could I do as a parent of a child entering high school next year to support her more? Her response: You’re already doing it. You’re here, Your aware. That’s Everything!
It is ok that I don’t have it all together. “THIS IS WHO I AM!”
For more information on ‘Southern Smash’ check out : http://www.southernsmash.org/
Tip: Keep checking back they will be adding more traveling events in 2014