Flippin’ the weekly weigh in
This week’s blog post comes from an previous client who’s an artist. After we had finished working together she decided to tackle a creative project she’d had in her mind for a long time but not been brave enough to start.. until now.
J decided to take a photo of herself naked, reclining on a red sofa to show herself that regardless of how she’s feeling, her body looks pretty much the same.
It’s hard to think about how much of our energy is spent focusing on how we think we look and how different we feel each day - when in fact it’s our minds that could use some TLC not our bodies which have most often stayed the same! When we are fixated on our bodies all the time, we miss all the amazing other things that make us who we are. I love how J is using her art to express the progress she has made on her journey.
I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did. If you’d like to book a free 40 mins discovery call then head to this page.
One of the most liberating things that I have learnt from Harri was to ditch the scales.
After having diet culture be a large part of my day to day life for over half of my life, it has been an adjustment to not judge myself on the numbers my existence takes up.
So much of my life has revolved around weigh-ins and focusing on lessening the number reflected back to me, the inner and outer congratulations or commiserations that follow and the sense of achievement or despair.
As an artist and feminist this constant cycle had always sat very heavy in my heart and this boredom with the bullshit diet cycle is what led me to Harri in the first place.
For the last three years now I had been wanting to create a series of photos as an antidote to this cycle of placing my worth on an arbitrary number, comparing myself to gym & diet adverts with their before and after photos, imaging myself a that moment, when finally, I had achieved my perfect body and true happiness was finally revealed to me.
The idea was to photograph myself once a week for a year to show myself, and others, that my body really doesn’t change that much and that it has very natural fluctuations throughout the year, e.g gaining weight in winter, changes in muscle tone due to more walking to work, less due to illness etc.
Regardless of diets or not regardless of a stone loss in weight, I always felt roughly the same at the end of the day.
Three years ago I took an initial photo, replicating a classical reclining nude pose and even worked up the courage to show this piece in a crit group, but even with great responses and encouragement about the work there was still a voice inside me telling me I was a fake and that the project wasn’t worthwhile.
Until I met Harri I hadn’t even realised that this project terrified the life out of me because I had no idea how to complete it, how to live a year looking at myself naked, how to live a year without dieting and how to be comfortable with myself.
But while working with Harri, I began to change my mind about these concerns until 4 weeks ago I couldn’t find any more reasons not to start this project. This is not just due to practical aspects such as equipment, space etc.
I realised I was wanting to make this project to help people feeling the same way as I do, not realising I was the person who needed this project the most!
The premise is pretty simple, I photograph myself reclining naked against a red velvet covered sofa with some flowers for composition, and a set of old school scales which I set to show how heavy or light I feel. The aim is to prove to myself that I look pretty similar week to week and that the idea of being heavier or lighter is actually a feeling in my mind and not in my body.
I’m 4 weeks in and I’m still finding it quite difficult to look at these photos without criticising myself, but each week the whole process is getting slightly easier, stripping off in my studio, laying back on the red velvet and thinking about the weight of my achievements and ideas for a change, rather than my weight on the scales. This is what’s important.