1. Consider some ways you may be abusing your body:

• You’re being abusive when your mind tells your body to take another bite of food when your body has clearly articulated that it’s full. It’s not up to the mind to tell the body anything. The mind has no form and has never taken a bite of food in its life. Why rely on a “virtual reality” to tell your physical body whether it has had enough food to eat?

  • You’re being abusive when you over-exercise because your mind is telling your body it’s not good enough the way it is. Society has an image of the way our bodies “should” look. If we buy into those ideas, we’re not honoring the capabilities of our physical body and we’re harming our “animal.” When we do this, we’re victimizing our bodies for the sake of a false image of perfection.
  •  You’re being abusive when you starve yourself because your mind is telling you that to be perfect you need to be thin. Each person has a unique physical form and some of us will never be “thin.” With self-acceptance we can be happy with who we are rather than trying to become someone we’re not.
  • You’re being abusive when you don’t get enough rest because your mind is telling you to work harder to get ahead. No matter how hard we work or how far ahead we get in life, it will never be enough if we don’t learn to find our self-love and approval from within.
  • You’re being abusive when you take pills to control your mood because your mind is telling you fear-based stories that you believe and have no control over. Once we understand that our emotions follow our thoughts, we realize that no number of pills can replace learning to control our internal dialogue. With self-awareness we can clearly hear the fear-based thoughts of “My life is overwhelming,” “There is so much stress in my life,” and “My life is so depressing.” Once identified, rather than believing those lies we can take action in our lives to address the issues that are causing our misery.
  • You’re being abusive when you engage in sexual activities that go against your body because your mind is telling you that you need to be sexy and "hot" to be loved. Many of us have learned to link our self-worth with our physical bodies and our sexual desirability. We then use our bodies as sexual objects to manipulate others into loving us. However, love is not a commodity and this type of manipulation is prostitution.
  • You’re being abusive to your body when you remain in a physically harmful relationship because your mind is telling you that you deserve to be treated that way, or that you’ll never find anyone better. Love is not pain, ever!



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