As most of you know, every story in my past is a direct result from disordered eating.Up until I was 33, my life was a constant mental battle of self-hatred, projected towards my body. Even after being crowned “Woman with the world’s deadliest thighs” by ‘the’ Stan Lee, I still found a way to obsess, hate, and despise my body on a daily basis. Primarily my legs. (Ever notice how many designs at GRRRL are around embracing legs?) But now all of this gets to change.
At GRRRL, we aren’t just selling a few t-shirts or squat proof leggings, we are solving a public health crisis. We get to create a new paradigm. We get to stop the cycle of dieting, chasing thinness, and whatever used to be or currently is, the “ideal beauty”. Because as we know, society and what we nowadays call ‘influencers’, are ever changing what that ideal is.
In the 1500’s women wanted to look robust because it was a sign of wealth, as they could afford to eat. Thinness was a sign of poverty. Similar to wanting to have ultra-white skin, as that was a sign of elite wealth. A tan was only a working class ‘thing’ because they spent the day outside… working.
Fast forward to the beginning of the 21st century, and we see a similar trend with curves coming back. Then in the 1920’s, curves went “out of fashion” with the flapper-style and boyish figure appeal. Back to curves in the 1950’s with Monroe, to back out of style again in the 60-70’s to the androgynous look dominating the scene and loathing over ‘Twiggy’. Into the 80’s we embark back into ‘fullness’ and big hair, then flip back around in the 90’s to Kate Moss, Bongo Jeans, Calvin Klein and being a size 0.
It’s like we’re constantly chasing something we’ll never hold onto for more than a few moments.
So just how do we create a new paradigm of acceptance and freedom? We do this by first creating awareness. Without awareness of a problem, then there is no problem to solve. We must get real clear that we are in a state of emergency globally, with the number of eating disorders drastically on the rise, and kids as little as 4 years old wanting to diet. We’re not even discussing the number of suicide attempts, completions, or self-harm incidents here either – almost all of which can be traced back to having poor body image
We take daily actions like #ThePledge where we vow to stop talking negatively about ourselves, as well as others women. This is where our hashtag of #notyourcompetition comes from. When women belittle and tear down other women, it’s simply because they are not happy or content within themselves. Furthermore, women are programmed from birth by society, (through TV, movies, books, etc) to believe that we’re ‘born this way’ and that other women are our competition.
(Of course until now)No more standing in the mirror, in front of your kids saying how fat, old and disgusting we look. We might still be thinking that internally, but in order to break the cycle of false beliefs, we have to sometimes ‘fake it till we make it’.
We start by creating new conversations.
We stop complimenting little girls on how pretty they are, and instead say: You are so Strong. Resilient. Brave. Intelligent. Clever. After we start working on ourselves, we get to learn practical, affordable, and effective tools to help the Next Gen learn a new narrative. Learn to accept their body. And to learn that:Their value is unrelated to the exterior.
Recovery and this journey of “self love and radical acceptance” doesn’t happen over night. It often doesn’t happen over months, or even years. It’s a daily act and sometimes it’s off the charts amazing, and others, it’s right back to where you started. But the important thing is, is knowing that you’re not alone, there is hope, and collectively we are ALL pioneers in this new world.
As we know, prevention is so much better than cure.
We are doing more than prevention, we are CHANGING the entire landscape for humankind. Imagine a world where you didn’t have worry for a second about how you looked, and if you’ll be judged. But instead, all you had to think about was the level of gratitude you have for owning a functioning body.
You don’t need to go out and start your own charity to make change. The power you possess to help one person, will have a massive ripple effect in the fabric of society, and multiply out exponentially.
Whether you aim to be at one of NEDA’s walks with us, or are planning on coming to our first pilot training for the GRRRL Project, we’ll help you find a way wherever you are in your journey, to make change. Our first organized NEDA walk will be in Phoenix with size Heather and I, March 17th, and our first GRRRL Project pilot program facilitator training will be May 30th in Las VegasOur first fundraise for NEDA started with a presale of our new Freedom Fit bamboo line of t-shirts, with 15% of proceeds going straight to NEDA. These shirts are a unisex style fit, and we encourage ALL people to get into it.
NEDA awareness week starts today, so get involved any way you can via our Instagram page.
To learn more about ED, visit NEDA.
Please share this if you’re done with the old paradigm, and ready to storm the front lines with us!