Not so long ago, my life was divided into “good” days and “bad” days. The determining factors were how flat my stomach was in the morning, how much I weighed, how my pants fit that day (which was especially risky had they been recently washed), and how I stuck to the diet I’d obsessively planned out the day before. Complete self-torture.

Because what defined “good” for me was driven by need for my body to be perfect, almost every day became a “bad” day. Whether walking along the busy street, working out at the gym or reading blogs, my sense of self was determined by how I looked compared to everyone else I ran into on the streets or gym or someone’s blog… and on my most days, I couldn’t compete. Today I try not to live like that anymore.

What is that I am the one judging myself and making up crazy rules about how my day will turn out. Essentially, I am choosing to think badly or highly about myself. Why do I want to be that mean to myself, really? Has it helped me thus far? When I used to ask myself these questions, the answers were usually that I hated myself and it hasn’t helped me. If I can choose to be negative, then I can certainly choose to think positively, and thus feel happier.

Today, I try not to define my days in such black-and-white terms. I can easily get caught up in negative self-talk, but when it happens, I am determined not to entertain it. I look at it like a symptom that’s telling me something else is going on, and then I reframe my thoughts. None of us are perfect, but we all have positive qualities that make us who we are. For anyone struggling with these issues, I’m here to tell you, There Is hope.

My baby cat has completely stolen the picture!