I recognize the desperation because it usually starts with the word “please” and transitions to the word “exactly.” I’ve been hearing it more often lately. “Please,” it starts, “tell me exactly what I need to do to lose weight.” “Please,” someone says, “tell me exactly what you ate and exactly what workouts you did.” “Please, tell me exactly what I need to do.”
I remember being the person who felt that same urgency, that same desire to find the answers. I needed to know precisely what I should be eating and how I should be moving my body in order to lose pounds. I needed to know specifically how a person went about improving her life. I needed to know exactly what to do and I couldn’t calm down until I figured it out.
Here’s the thing. When I receive these questions, which has been happening a lot lately, I don’t think the question truly being asked is “How do I lose weight?” I think what the person is truly asking me is “What do I need to do to change myself?” And my answer is always the same: Nothing. You don’t need to change yourself. You can learn to love and accept yourself as is, wherever you are, in the exact size and shape you’re in, right now. And until you’re ready to do that, nothing is ever going to change.