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From Shameful to Joyful Movement

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As a kid, you never wonder why you’re playing outside, riding your bike, or picking up sports. It’s just fun and for the love of it. I’m not sure when that stops and the the shame, punishment and guilt associated with moving our bodies starts to kick in. It’s like we lose the joy of our bodies doing what they love to do because we begin focusing on the wrong things - weight loss, health, training, etc. None of those things are outright wrong in and of themselves, but if our motivation for doing them or working toward it is based in shame or guilt, then they’re likely not good for us.

Exercise, working out or whatever you want to call it has always been used as a form of punishment for my body. I saw it as purely a means to an end of weight loss. That’s it. I had to force my body to sweat, push through the pain, and run just to lose weight. It’s why I’ve never been much of an active person in my adult years. I liked playing sports when I was younger, but even as I got older, I started feeling ashamed that I was too out of shape to even do the things I used to love.

I’m learning that for whatever purpose or outcome, shame and guilt should never be the driving force behind a decision. Whether it’s to work out, move my body or just sit on the couch all day, if those choices are driven by shame, I am not fully living the life I’m called to live. I have lost myself.

Over the past few years, and especially this year staying home much more, I’ve become completely inactive. I’m stuck in a vicious cycle of chronic pain that causes me to not want to move even knowing movement would help alleviate some of the pain in the long run. So, I’m trying to be encouraging and gentle with myself to move in ways that bring me joy. Moving the focus away from weight loss, punishment or shame to a place of love for my body, or at a minimum, appreciation.

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When I think about joyful movement, I think about easiness. I think about things that I want to feel better like my pain, energy and strength. Yoga has always been something I love, so I’m trying to get back into that practice. I also want to get stronger because I feel so weak. My energy is lacking too, so I want that to improve. I want to see if movement makes me happier. Those are the things that are important to me and help me feel more like I’m honoring my body than punishing it.

So working through all that with myself, I felt like it was time to launch The Body Collection as a celebration of our bodies. Think about all that they do for us, and movement is such an important part of our bodies. No matter whether it’s small movements or huge accomplishments with your bodies, each and every breath is precious. I also want this collection to help you feel good while moving. There is no shame to be had here! Wear it, love it and feel good with whatever movement you choose to enjoy with your body.

I hope this collection gives space to thinking more about releasing shame and guilt. That’s something I’m working on not only with how I think about my body and movement but in how I make all my life choices. More to come on sharing about that later. The Body Collection launches January 5th at 10am!