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Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Why so many things?

I already practice most of the things that I preach for the journey of the slim soul: the whole Seven Golden Rules of slimming and all the tips that I have sprinkled in my book. That shouldn't surprise you, as I am a firm believer of walking the talk. Besides, the Journey of the Slim Soul wasn't born out of some clever idea, it was born from first hand experience. I usually stay clear of people who become experts on a topic that are not intimately related to them, like health and fitness experts who have never struggled with their weight or who find exercising a piece of cake.

I have to admit however that there is one area where I haven't done so well and naturally I was shown last week that this would be the area where I would be asked to brush up my act: decluttering. I came to this realisation during a telephone conversation with my sister who said in passing something like: "you are such an organised person" and I nearly laughed when she said that. I come from a family where my mother is extremely organised and my father is completely the opposite. And my first husband managed to convince me that I was more like my father, but this hasn't always been the case. When I lived alone, I had a well organised and tidy house. Well, it was only a studio flat where the most minute amount of mess meant you couldn't move. I now live in a house that is so big that sometimes I think we could install one of those conveyor belts to go from end to the other, or roller skate. And I have four children.

Whatever mess I manage to clear is usually recreated within minutes. In addition, I have now given up on paper. Or perhaps I should say that paper won. It is amazing the amount of paper that is put through one's mailbox and I am on overwhelm because I haven't kept on top of it and I am probably two years behind. And with four children and a business to run... it's easy to get snowed under, especially since my daughter's school sends me one possibly two letters per week. We were commenting with my mother over the phone that with bills and paperwork, it is a constant work in progress. You just can't let the guard down. Well I have, big time.

So my only point of focus in the weeks to come will be to retore my house to some ressemblance of order. I have already started. Why is it linked to my slimming journey, you might wonder? Because clutter is symbolic of our bodies and life and a cluttered house indicates blockage. And I noticed that my clients who have untidy house usually have issues to resolve and are almost all overweight. I don't know which one influences which but I find that my house gets more messy when I go through a phase of my life when I am unhappy. And when I am unhappy, I tend to comfort eat a lot more. Besides, a cluttered untidy house tends to bring our energy down. We feel sluggish and heavy because looking at the mess depresses us. When we feel sluggish we tend to eat more to give ourselves that little boost that we need, only it doesn't work that way.

How do you start decluttering when the sheer volume of work is enough to make you run out the door? My advice is only do twenty minutes at a time, and one drawer at a time. If you tell yourself you have to do only twenty minutes, it doesn't feel so daunting. And you are more than likely to end up doing a lot more than that but it will be a choice, because you will enjoy it, instead of feeling like it's a huge obligation. It is just as important to focus only in one area of your home at a time so that you see some improvement.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Quit smoking or slimming? Is it one or the other?

I was a smoker for longer than I want to admit and what stopped me from quitting was the fear that I would put on weight. I was finding it difficult enough as it was to curb my appetite, which in reality was emotional hunger, not true hunger. I am sure I was not alone.

And with tobacco, there are a lot of myths around the addiction of nicotine. In truth, there is a mild physical addiction but if you think about it, if you were truly addicted, cravings would wake you up in the middle of the night. If you wake up in the middle of the night and are addicted, you will probably go light one up but if you have a good night sleep, the lack of cigarette won't interrupt it.

It is so sad that women and men, but mostly women, continue to do something so harmful to their bodies because they are afraid to put on weight when really that can totally be avoided. The reason why people put on weight when they quit smoking is that they did not tackle the mental and emotional dependency to cigarettes, so when the cigarettes are gone, they replace it with food. Resolving these mental and emotional dependencies are not as hard as they seem and a good hypnotherapy CD goes a long way to help you do that.

That is the reason why I recorded my "Quit and Slim" CD shortly after I trained as a clinical hypnotherapist. I wanted to help people find a cheap way (not everyone can afford to go to a hypnotherapist at £50 a session) to quit smoking, And even if they did come to tme, having the CD to listen to helps to reinforce the message and help them continue to be a non smoker in the long run, as the first three weeks after you stop smoking are usually the trickiest. The reason for this is that you are used to going to places and mingling with people who perhaps smoke and you feel "naked" without that gesture that supposedly gives you confidence and makes you look cool.

Today I want to dedicate this blog to all the smokers who hang onto their cigarettes because they think it's difficult to quit and they don't want to put on weight. Please understand that your beliefs are only beliefs and that is thoughts that you consider to be the truth but that doesn't make them any truer just because you believe them. I have done both: quit and slim. It is possible. Chuck that pack of cigarettes or that bag of tobacco and start living a life where your taste buds are going to have a real treat when you eat.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Make love not war

Usually when we finally decide to do something about our weight, the frame of mind that we adopt to do something about it could be described as "war". We prepare a plan, go on a diet and get a gym subscription. Perhaps we hire a coach or join a slimming club. And from there on, we push, push, push. Sometimes even, we go from zero exercise to going to the gym every day. And we suddenly cut out all the "bad" foods that we used to eat.  We are full of energy and drive our bodies and minds very hard to get where we want to be. It has to happen fast and almost furious.

It doesn't work like that. Not if you want to slim for life. Change takes time and must be gentle and integrated step by step. It's better to do things more gently even if you can't see a difference on your scales after two days (and believe me you won't and shouldn't). You shouldn't even weight yourself to start with because it puts pressure on you and your precious body. This is particularly true if you have a lot of weight to lose (sometimes I do have to use this term but I much prefer the term slimming) because weighing yourself WILL inevitably get you depressed.

No instead, you must be gentle in your approach and take a step by step approach. Change one thing at a time and consolidate. Perhaps you want to drink more water and cut out fizzy drinks, coffee and sweet teas. Or perhaps you want to slowly replace refined carbohydrates by complex ones. The aim is to nourish your body better so that it does not crave so much junk food. Calories should be deleted from your dictionary all together. It is not a helpful word or concept and it can get you obsessed. It can even put you off exercising, in the most extreme case, because you will consider that you don't burn enough calories.

Your body has its own wisdom. If you espouse the fast and furious approach, it will resist. As you would if you had a bit of sense left in you. It took you probably years to put that weight on, why are you expecting it to go in a fortnight? I am not saying that you won't lose weight on my journey, but it is an added benefit, not something you obsess about. It is however inevitable. And in way, I want you to see it like this: you are on a journey, if you obsess about going from A to B, then you are missing the point totally. You are not enjoying the journey. Set your destination, have a route, be aware that the route can have many detours and that's fine (you can get lost and find your way again) but that sooner or later you will get to B. It doesn't matter how long you take, unless you want to have a short term result. But please do yourself a favour, stop obsessing about B and wishing you weren't at A. It's ridiculous and no matter how much you wish you weren't at A isn't going to change anything so make peace with being where you are. It doesn't matter where you start, with a car, proper directions, you cannot fail to go from A to B.

Any motorist will tell you as well that you can't really start your journey until you take the hand break off (resistance) and in slimming resistance is the cause of your unhealthy relationship to food and also and as important, the cause of your lack of confidence. This resistance must be tackled before you even start your journey because if you don't, you are making it harder than necessary to slim. Imagine driving from London to Paris with the breaks on. How foolish. And that's what I do at the Journey of the Slim Soul: I help you take take the break off, give you some tools to navigate and cheer you along the way. You could call me your co-pilot. I have been from A to B. I am doing it again. And I am loving the journey: it's easy and the scenery is lovely. Life can be enjoyed on your journey of the slim soul.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Sunday, 19 June 2011

La piece de resistance

On our journeys, and very often at the very start, we come across resistance. Part of us wants to be slimmer and another part of us, the part that I call the Monkey, doesn't. It is because of this conflict that our attempt fail and at the Journey of the Slim Soul this is the very first step we put into place: overcoming la piece de resistance.

Reasoning or even being aware of it is not enough. You have to tackle the conflict by aligning all parts of you. And the problem with most slimmers is that they start a programme (diet) without having resolved this conflict and this is the reason why it seems like such hard work. This is also the reason why they keep on having cravings and why they self-sabotage.

I have recorded this video below to help you overcome resistance. Even if you don't believe in EFT, try it. It's crazy but it works. If you are not comfortable with the sequence (and its true that you can't see my hands on the video - bear with me, dear readers, I did this at 6 am on a Sunday), you can practice on another video of mine first which is called "Love yourself first" available on my You Tube Channel AngesdeLum.

Blesssings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

When should I eat?

What is great when you are looked upon as a bit of an expert, which is where I am getting now about slimming, is that people ask you the most interesting questions. One of them is "when should I eat?" The answer is obvious: when you are hungry, yet for most people it's not that easy to implement.

We have been trained as social animals to eat when the world tells us to eat. It starts with our mothers: as children, we are requested, kindly for most of us but not all, to eat when we are presented with food. For those of you who are parents, you will know how hard it is to force a baby or toddler to eat when they are not hungry, yet we try so hard. This is, in my humble opinion, one of the most profound reason we are raising a nation of overweight children. The second being that we try to force them to finish their plates. The third is because when they get to school age, we force them to sit more than is natural for them and then, force them to exercise when we decide is the right time, whereas a child left to move when they feel like it will always have enough exercise, but I am digressing slightly.

As we have all been trained well by our parents and then by our environment, we tend to eat when we are expected to and as much as we are offered food. We find it difficult to resist food, at least those of us who are overweight. Slim people, on the other hand, tend to be less socially apt and only eat when they are hungry and are able to hurt Auntie Betty's pudding because really they have had too much to eat. We, on the other hand, might judge them as wrong, but our waist lines should tell us better.

The difficult thing is when we have beent trained for so long to ignore the cues of our bodies with regards to our hunger, we tend to get it wrong a lot and that's why we are overweight. I go into detail in my book about how to reconnect to our natural hunger radar. This is one of the seven golden rules of slimming that I offer as "the way to natural and easy slimness": make friends with your hunger. We often mix up emotional hunger and real hunger and hunger and thirst. Once you get to master that aspect of your eating, the slimming becomes so easy.

So to get back to the question that a friend of mine asked me yesterday as we were chit chatting about my book: but you should eat when you are hungry, of course.

Blessings of slimness

Anges de Lumiere

Monday, 13 June 2011

Don't wait until you get the perfect body

A lot of slimmers' wardrobes contain clothes that are either too small or if fitted, pretty dull: baggy or elasticated trousers, big blouses, large t-shirts, etc. It's almost as if they are putting their loveliness on hold. They are waiting until the day that they can put their old clothes on again and have put their lives on hold. 

That's what I call the "wait problem".

What you need to do is quite the opposite.  You are already beautiful. You just can't see it now. Learn to love your body exactly as it is and honour it. Make sure it looks as beautiful  as it can. Use accessories. Wear make up. Be glamorous.  Do anything you can so that when you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror, you like what you see. I know it's hard but you can't keep on living your life on hold. If you don't do all that you can to feel good today, you won't be able to find the energy or the motivation to do something to change your lifestyle to get to where you want to be. There has to be a shift. And instead of waiting for those pounds to melt off to feel good, start working on that good feeling about yourself now.

Start with your clothes. Just because you are bigger than you want to be doesn't mean you don't deserve to treat yourself now. Any figure can be complimented by clothes that are well cut and that espouse your shapes as they are. You can play with styles, cuts, colours and cheat to attract the eye to other parts of your body if needed. Hire a colour or fashion consultant. You want to feel good before you start on your journey because the journey is about enjoying going from A to B. It's not about putting your life on hold until you get to B.

Feel good about yourself now. It won't diminish your desire to improve your body but it will put you in the right set of mind that you will be wanting to take those small steps because good vibes foster that. Bad vibes only drive you to the fridge and to more comfort eating.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Showing up is enough

Today I went for my first run in... ten months. It was such a great moment. And I was probably one inch taller than before.

I won't go into how I got into running although it is quite a story in itself, but let me just say that I started running one sunny day of September 2009 at 43 years young, despite not being a sporty type at all and hating running. I run solid for a whole year two to three times a week and my runs lasted between thirty to fifty minutes. You will notice that I am not trying to impress you by saying how long my runs were and how fast I ran. These things are irrelevant to me. I ran for pleasure. I ran for life. In fact I took place in the race for life in may 2010 with my then ten year young daughter.

I had to stop running in August 2010 because when I got pregnant that summer, unfortunately I had quite a bit of bleeding and I considered it safer to stop the running to make sure I kept my baby. I didn't "give up" running that easily. Running was my bliss. I ran in beautiful places in nature. My favourite run is going on the Severn bridge that runs across between England and Wales.

During my pregnancy, whenever I saw a runner (and believe me when you love running and you can't, you see a lot of runners) I imagined that I was running alongside with them. This is an old trick of hypnotherapists, as we know that imagining that you are doing something (and that include sports) is nearly just as good as doing it for real. I was told during my training days as a hypnotherapist the story of a Vietnam veteran who practiced his swing in his mind for the whole duration of his emprisonment and who, went going back home, was able to take up his golf practice at the same handicap as when he left, and that was years after.

I was counting the days until I could run again. Yesterday I decided that that would be the day. I didn't know how or when. After all I have a tribe of three children and a nine week breastfeeding baby so the odds are slightly against me. But what I did was put my gear on in the morning when I woke up and I was determined to grab any opportunity to do so. An opportunity came up before I dropped my son to a birthday party in the morning but then I realised I got the time of the party wrong and something in me sank as that opportunity vanished. I was determined nevertheless so whilst I was regrouping, I thought of another opportunity as my man was driving back after doing a food shop. On the spur of the moment, I asked him to drop me a mile from home on our way back. And so it happened. I went for my first run in ten months. I run for ten minutes and I had to walk a couple of times and that felt wonderful.

My point today is that if you show up (as in, in my case, dress up for the occasion), things will happen. It is no use waiting for things to be perfect to start doing something. And it helps to show your commitment by being ready to go. I could have waited for the right time to put my gear on but I did the opposite: I put my gear on and waited for the opportunity and it worked. Running works for me because I have such a busy life that I can squeeze it in between everything I have to do. Find what works for you. But more importantly, do what makes you feel good and what you enjoy. Running takes me outdoors which is what I need and enjoy, no matter the weather. It's not competitive and I don't have a hoard of sporty people staring at me like it used to happen at the gym. I don't have to go to a gym, pay a subscription (which I won't use)... etc. And I run despite the fact that I used to hate it... how did that happen? Believe me or not, I asked the angels for inspiration one night and the next day, I was a runner.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Friday, 10 June 2011

Can I have a day off the journey please?

The question is: can you have a day off? Or a week off?

Considering that the Journey of the Slim Soul is a journey, you could say that you are always on it. Even if you wanted, you couldn't really be off your journey. All you would do really is heading in the wrong direction. When you have a "bad" day (tell me what a bad day is?) there is always something to learn from it. In fact, if you didn't have them, I am not sure you would be truly progressing. I would query whether you were honest with yourself.

Instead of having a "bad" day because you are out of control, chose to have a "bad" day and learn from it. This journey is about mindfulness and learning. What is having a bad day anyway? No day is entirely bad. People who say they hate Mondays make me smile. I don't mean this in a horrible way but no day is consistantly bad or good. There are extreme days when something so dramatic happens that you could consider it a bad day but how many times have you thought that something that happened to you was bad (for example breaking up with your boyfriend) only to realise a few days later or months or years that it was probably the best thing that happened to you (that boyfriend was a loser and you later on found the love of your life)? Probably quite a few of them. Good and bad are concepts that are not extremely helpful because they crystalise experiences and reinforce the feelings. If you can't feel good about something, at least try not to feel bad. Try to keep it neutral. Try not to rehearse the negativity with your friends.

What would a bad day be on the Journey of the Slim Soul anyway? A day where you would not enjoy your food. A day when you would eat mindlessly. A day when you would be stressed and hate yourself. A day when you would either starve yourself or stuff yourself... is that really something that we would consciously do to "treat" ourselves on our journeys? So why is it that when we are on a diet, that's what we yearn for? This is so weird. On a diet, we yearn for all of this because we have foods that we cannot eat and someone else dictates what we can do. On the journey of the slim soul, however, we decide. We are in power.

How do you learn from a "bad" day? I would rather talk about learning from something you did that felt out of alignment with your intent, such as for example eating something mindlessly? As soon as you realise you are out of alignment, take your journal out. I recommend to keep two separate diaries (hence the Slim Soul Diaries, not the Slim Soul Diary): a positive diary and a release diary. So get out your release diary and start reflecting on what happened? Why did it happen? Try not to get into the blame mentality. Perhaps someone said something to you or you thought about something that makes you sad and you were driven by those feelings to eat mindlessly. That's good. If you journal about it you start identifying what drives your "off moments". You learn from it. You can go beyond. Write down how you felt whilst you were eating mindlessly (or vomiting or whatever it is that you do that makes you unhappy): try to be specific. Were you feeling sadness, disgust, anger... identify the feeling. Go with it and beyond it. Avoiding feelings does not sort them. It is embracing them and going to the bottom of them that does.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

The food will still be there when I want it

One of the turning point on my journey of the slim soul has been to realise that I had to make choices in life and one of these choices was whether to eat every bit of food that crosses my path just because it was there OR to chose what I eat one bite at a time with a purpose and an intent.

I had been raised in a family where babies were fed at set times and a set amount, in a factory type environment (these were the guidelines of the baby experts of my mother's generation - she just didn't have the courage to depart from that advice and follow her heart). Later on when I became a child, (i) food was still served at set times AND (ii) if I didn't eat quickly what was offered, my siblings would not leave me any food AND (iii) I was expected to clean my plate. In short, (i) + (ii) + (iii) = recipe for obesity.

To enable me to truly be on my journey of the slim soul, I had to decondition myself of this very powerful equation that inevitably would have led me to piling on the kilos year after year after year, and possibly faster. One of the things that I found helped me, and still helps me today is to remind me that I am no longer a child depending on adults to feed her and that "The food will still be there when I want it". This enables me to not systematically eat what is offered to me. The great test is when I go in planes... I no longer have the snack, sandwich... or meal that is being served, even if it's free. Plane food is now so remote from acceptable standards of "goodness" for me that it makes it easy. I consider that my body deserves better than that.

So perhaps you too can remind yourself that whatever it is that is being served or offered to you there will be food when you really feel like eating and you don't have to eat everything that comes your way.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Doing what you can is good enough

When people contemplate their slimming journey and are told that they must exercise and they can't, then they are likely to give up slimming before they even try. They feel frustrated because their bodies is in pain and is not happy moving and the advice or encouragement that everyone must exercise to lose weight becomes a curse instead of a cure. They feel sorry for themselves and might even feel depressed and harbour the thoughts that life is unfair.

And I can't blame them. This advice can sometimes be so counterproductive. What I want to say today is "Do what you can and that is good enough". If you can't exercise because your body is in pain, then just drink eight glasses of water every day, or do something else... whatever it is that you CAN do, then do it. There are a hosts of little things that you can do along the way that can help. I can't list them all here but if you browse this blog you will be getting more and more inspiration. Besides the best tips are described in my book the Journey of the Slim Soul (TM).

In 2006, when I lost two stones after the birth of my third child at forty years young, I did not exercise at all. I lost all this weight only by making small changes in other areas and it is only when I reached a certain body weight (I used to weight myself back then but have grown wiser since) that it started to feel right to exercise.

The question is not whether to exercise, it is to exercise when the time is right and to do the exercise that is perfect for you. The criteria is: what makes you happy, what makes your body move IN JOY.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

From I wish to I am...

How many of us say "Oh I wish (so and so)" not really knowing how to get from A to B. And so these thoughts remain at the wishing level.
How do we get from wish to reality? Do we need a magic wand? I think we do and the magic wand is intent and alignment.

When you think about it, sometimes the "I wish" vibration contains a je-ne-sais-quoi of envy. You look at someone thin and you say: "Oh I wish I was as thin as him or her" but either there is an underlying message that it is far beyond our reach and we will never get there and sometimes there is also an innuendo that that person is lucky to be so thin and we feel sorry for ourselves.

No one knows what is the reality behind someone's thinness. My goal is definitely to be thinner, but my intent (and this is very different from a goal) is to get there easily, effortlessly, naturally, gently and to reach that goal permanently. I am not interested in being a sad slim, a miserable slim, a starving slim or a at-war-with-myself thin. I am also not interested in a quick fix although I have seen that the Journey of the Slim Soul can bring fast and lasting results, with joy and ease.

I don't think most slimmers have an intent behind their wishes and yet they would benefit so much from doing so. In fact, we should all live our lives with intent. My intent, for example, is to inspire and uplift in everything I do, to bring lightness into people's hearts and souls... hence the Slim Soul. To me slimness manifests from the inside out. It has to be created and nurtured inside ourselves through "slim thinking" which manifests when we stop envying others and accept ourselves exactly as we are, but also when we rethink our reality. Until you think slim, your body cannot follow your thoughts because you don't have the imagery necessary to get it from where you are to where you want to be. Then when the "vibration" is strong enough, take inspired action. It probably took you a long time to get to the size you are, it will take time to get where you want to be. In fact, that's the only way that it will be permanent and healthy, so you might as well enjoy the journey.

So I invite you to move from the "I wish" to the "I am". We are all born slim, even if as babies we might be chubby. All we need to do is to unlearn limiting beliefs and restore ourselves back to factory settings.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Saturday, 4 June 2011

It's not all or nothing

Very often, we resist doing something because it appears to be overwhelmingly difficult. The only reason it is so difficult, in our minds, is because we apply an "all or nothing" rule. For some reason, we do that almost systematically in the realm of slimming, and withing that realm, particularly with exercising.

Let me explain. Most people who want to slim, decide one day to join a gym. They pay their fee and perhaps decide to go once to the gym. They go home. Feel good. If they are really enthusiastic, they might go every day the first week. But then either the novelty wears off or life throws at them a curved ball and they stop going to the gym. Other priorities keep on taking over. Perhaps they have gym card that they look at occasionally and think to themselves, I have paid for this, really I ought to go there, but it doesn't happen. They have applied an all or nothing rule to exercise.

In my experience, it's not all or nothing. And more importantly, it needs to be broken down in tiny steps that can be easily integrated in our lives. Going to the gym does not integrate easily into my life. It ceased to do when I had my first child. I found that juggling work and motherhood was hard enough as it was and impossible to fit in anything extra, not to mention the gym.

Start smaller: walk five minutes more every day (perhaps at lunch time, or parking your car further from your destination), walk up the stairs instead of taking escalators or lifts (elevators for our US friends), run around the garden with your children... but some days, and today was one such days for me, just put your running shoes on and your track suit and just walk (not run): and that is good enough for now, because eighty percent of success is showing up. And each time you do it, you will take it a bit further, because after all you made the effort of putting those trainers on (but you didn't tell yourself: I must go exercise). Do it not matter how small. It will give you the taste for more and the satisfaction of having done "something".

Apply the advice of this great blog, even if it is not specifically geared towards slimming. And keep going... your dream figure is not going to magically appear tomorrow through a war with yourself, it will manifest in perfect timing after you take one tiny step after another after another so that it feels effortless yet you are moving in the right direction. And yes, "failures" (I prefer to call them "Learning Curves" - yes the pun is intended) are part of the journey and should be celebrated as occasions to learn.

Blessings of lightness

Anges de Lumiere

Make friends with food

I am just back from a week' s holiday in Brittany. I hadn't visited France since October last year when I was only three months pregnant with my angel baby girl. I was born in France. And you see, I love food. I just love it. I love taste. I love texture. I love diversity. I love cooking. So when I hit the local supermarket in Sarzeau, Saturday afternoon, I just saw all these products that I had not eaten in ages and I went into a shopping frenzy: I bought a lot of the comfort foods that I used to eat as a child.

I have vowed to be totally honest in this blog so I will say this: I think I have overdone food this week. Not in a major way. Not in a binge sort of way: I never felt after a meal that I just had to roll to the side and sleep and feel the urge to get out of my clothes because they were too tight. But I have ate a lot less healthily than I usually do. More refined sugars. More refined carbs (especially bread)... less vegetables.

What was different from when I used to live in France and use food for comfort, though, is that:
  • I didn't eat more than I was hungry.
  • I ate mindfully.
  • I enjoyed my food.
  • I didn't worry about what I ate.
  • I didn't worry about the fact that I didn't have yet the body that I want.
And this is so important on my journey. Someone (I won't say who but there is always someone who says something like that "for your own good") pointed out that I wouldn't get very far on my slimming journey eating like that and that is actually the only thing that spoiled it and made me realise that "yes, I still had a bit of a tummy from giving birth only eight weeks ago, and yes my arms are bigger than they used to be - but carrying a baby 24/7 might have to do with it".

Funnily, enough, it is only after that comment that I become aware of it and felt ashamed of my body. That made me angry. I had worked so hard at feeling good about myself no matter what that I felt it took me back to pre-2009, before I wrote the journey of the slim soul and realised that loving yourself now, exactly as you are is one of the most important thing to do when you want to slim. Self love is paramount. It is "the" first step on the journey of the slim soul and it is not worth starting anything until you have that first step right. Otherwise, you will be heading in the wrong direction.

A natural expression of that self love is to love your food. How many of you have enjoyed "naughty" foods without any guilt recently? As I was browsing the internet for pictures for this entry, I was amazed at how all the pictures that we are shown in magazines and on the internet about food are so... one sided and stereotypical. I could not find one beautiful picture of a "generous" lady eating pasta... it's only models that look like they have never eaten pasta in their entire life and are going to the toilet right after the photo shoot to throw up.... or again the same models but eating salads without dressing. I want and need beautiful pictures of generous women who enjoy food. We need to enjoy our food no matter what. Why? That is the only way to combat cravings. If you are going to have a piece of chocolate cake, for God's sake enjoy it. Don't spoil it with guilt or you might have to eat five instead of one. Take your time savouring it. Let it melt in your mouth... let your taste buds experience the total experience without your mind numbing everything. In fact, when is the last time you have actually tasted your food properly?

Blessings of lightness.

Anges de Lumiere