I learnt a lot about human behavior and psychology in high school but the lessons didn’t come in entirely pleasant circumstances. I had been taught as a child that what matters is how people are from inside but it was clear to me in high school that how we are from outside also matters, not only to others but also to ourselves. Who could have known it better than me since I struggled with weight issue and was clearly overweight at 60 kg. I initially tried to ignore the criticism but I realized criticism was only one part of the equation. Somewhere inside me, I also didn’t like the fact of being overweight because it is a human psychology to want to look good. I eventually gathered the courage to lose weight and I am glad I did. The results almost made me grateful to everyone who had ever criticized my weight because the positive changes as a result of weight loss exceeded all of my expectations.
My life before losing weight seemed mostly inspired by Humpty Dumpty if my friends were inspired by Cinderella. I didn’t use to sit on a wall exactly but long hours of sitting on sofa and watching TV does come pretty close in modern times. I was as allergic to exercise as fire is to water and the only time I moved was when I had little choice. It’s reasonable to say that some of my friends burnt more calories in an hour going to gym and playing sports than I might have in a whole day most of the time. At the same time, I loved food with the same passion I hated exercise. Food to me was the greatest definition of happiness. In fact, I cannot think of a hobby I had at the time unless one considers eating food while watching TV as one. I was so fond of eating that rarely an hour would go by without me craving for something spicy or sweet. The fact that there are countless TV commercials for junk food that air during break time of popular programs didn’t help either.
When people would tell me to lose weight, I would always ignore them but there comes a time when you start realizing maybe it’s worth paying attention to what others are saying. As I would look at myself in the mirror, I would rarely feel good about myself. When I would be in school and my friends would get attention and complements, it would hurt me and create in me a desire to look attractive as well. Even shopping would be quite a troublesome activity for me due to the difficulty of finding trendy clothes that would fit me. Over time I realized I had to lose weight not because others suggested but because I want to do so myself. I wanted to experience what it is like to be complemented and feel good about oneself.
Once I produced the determination to lose weight, there was no looking back. My first attempt at losing weight was starving myself which could not have been more drastic step given my past love affairs with food. But dieting ended up doing more harm than good because by the time I would take meals, I would be so hungry that I would end up eating much more than a normal size meal. Once it became clear starving was not producing the results I had hoped, I knew it was time to have a plan and one needs some basic knowledge before formulating a weight-loss plan. I researched for hours on the internet and also talked to those who had lost weight and finally solved the puzzle that exercise and not starvation is the key to weight loss and managing healthy weight. I finally saw the hope of becoming Cinderella and saying good bye to the Humpty Dumpty version of me. It was not easy but hard work does pay off and after three months of disciplined dieting and exercise regime, I had reduced my weight to 45 kg and was ready to discover what it feels to be happy and confident about one’s appearance.
The fact that I would no long avoid mirror after losing weight was the first sign I started feeling good about myself. Shopping became not only a convenient task but also more fun because I could wear all the trendy clothes now. At home and in school, words of criticisms had been replaced by words of praise and I had finally experienced the joy of being considered attractive and the joy cannot really be explained in words. I also started feeling more energetic as well as enjoying sports more. In addition, my friends started inviting me more to social hangouts. It was a nice change from being at home and not having much to do except watching TV. Social experiences were much more enjoyable than being at home because I would meet new people and learn something about life and the world. It was clear that one’s physical appearances do matter and when we take care of ourselves, more people want to be seen with us because they also care how they are perceived by others.
Losing weight was probably the best decision in my life. I started feeling good about myself and my experiences significantly expanded. In addition, I became more energetic and many things that were inconvenient before such as shopping suddenly became enjoyable experiences. It was clear that not only our inside but our outside also matters when it comes to the real world.