Stray Dog Revolution
Our whole lives we are told that we need to jump through hoops and complete certain tasks to "measure up." To be "good enough." And we listen, whether we know it or not. We absorb the messages every single day. (Note: I'm speaking as a woman in this post... I'm sure the message to men is also out there and just as insidious, but I don't pretend I know what those messages are, or what it feels like to be on the receiving end of them.) The messages are simple and clear: Be beautiful. Be charming. Be nice. Be agreeable. Be supportive. Be skinny, but not too skinny. Be strong, but not too strong. Don't be crass or immature. Be responsible and don't complain. Lean in, but also be the room parent. Get along with everyone. Play nice. I'm sure I'm missing a zillion (feel free to add them in the comments) but you get the idea.
Well, guess what? Fuck. That. Noise. You know what you need to do to be "good enough?" Be you. Unapologetically you. You don't need a trophy or a merit badge or some other kind of award/reward to have self-esteem in this world because self-esteem only comes from one place: inside you. It comes from knowing that you are doing your absolute best every single day. It comes from trying every day to be better than you were the day before. For me, this means being kinder, more compassionate, more informed, more loving, braver, stronger, more resilient, more accepting, more patient than I was yesterday. For you, better may mean something entirely different. And that's okay. As long as you're the one defining it. Because you need to know that you are amazing just the way you are and you don't need me, or anyone else, to tell you this. You need to tell yourself.
So, instead of blocking that "crazy" friend on Facebook that posts all those horrifying political posts, block these messages instead. These messages that fly at us from all directions these days. These messages that make us feel like we don't measure up. That we're not smart enough, sexy enough, whatever enough. A renegade is defined as a person that deserts and betrays an organization. In my mind, the organization is this world that tries to impose on us some definition of what it means to be a woman. And that is worth deserting. My message to you is this: be a renegade. Block the messages. Desert the organization. Life your life on your terms and knock it outta the park.
I've been studying nutrition and healthy eating for over a decade. As the saying goes, food can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.