Emotional wear & tear

If you’re a bit confused by this title, then let me enlighten you. This post focuses on clothes, our obsession with sizes and how we can set ourselves free from this toxic mindset. I go into this topic in a bit more depth in my new ebook – so if you enjoy this post then please consider buying it!

The number game

We live in a numerical world. We are constantly attributing our self-worth to numbers. Be it income, PBs, friends, accolades, children, titles or clothes size – you name it, it’s probably a number. And there’s no denying that numbers can be useful; they can help to objectively quantify or measure whatever it might be. However, it’s when that objective number begins to have too much power over your emotions that it can become dangerous. When, rather than simply being a means to measure XYZ, it evolves into another form of obsession that governs your life.

Media fever

The thing is, clothes sizes would, in an ideal world, literally just be numbers. Saying you’re a size 6 would be no different to saying you’re a size 14. No shame, guilt, joy, envy or any other emotion would accompany the size of your clothes. Unfortunately, though, the media – whilst it’s *starting* to improve – seems to glorify one body type and through the rest into the bin. As if one body type and size were better than others. Let’s be honest, we’ve all seen the models with the lanky (yet somehow still curvy?) bodies parading on the media. And don’t get me wrong, there is NOTHING wrong about those bodies either! It’s just how they seem to be idolised by everyone and all clothes appear to be made with them in mind.

Clothes in recovery

One of the things that has held me back – repeatedly – in the past from fully recovering has been my clothes. Not wanting to outgrow them or have to buy more (because I’m stingy and also it fed into my fears of getting “fat”), every time I started to restore my weight I would then get scared and crawl back to square one. And, looking back objectively, I wish I’d just persevered and stopped valuing myself through the clothes I wore. I had this distorted perception of myself and was rooted to this idea that, because I’m small height-wise, I had to be small in all respects. Aka wear the smallest clothes. But the truth is, what I’ve come to learn is that my body physically isn’t built in that way and isn’t meant to fit in the smallest of sizes. I’ve only ever been able to wear them when underweight and malnourished, which speaks for itself.

Body shape

If you’re one of those people that fits most brands then you don’t know how lucky you are. For the rest of us, it can be hard to come to terms with the fact that our bodies are just not catered for. But having unique and different bodies is a beautiful thing, not something to be ashamed of. What really helped me realise this was looking at my parents’ bodies and realising that, genetically, I simply am not meant to or going to be a beanpole. The Gills are a family of short & muscular people and lanky is not in our genes. Nothing wrong with that – it’s just who we are. For so long I’ve pushed against this reality that I haven’t allowed my body to just BE what it wants to be. I’m finally changing that and I couldn’t be happier.

Clothes to make you feel good

So what changed? Well, this time round I just decided I couldn’t carry on fighting against my body. I don’t want to carry on forcing myself into uncomfortable and tight clothes that don’t really fit and, quite frankly, make me feel shit. At the end of the day, if I can only wear them when underweight then that size was just not meant for my body. My body isn’t in the wrong here – and I just want to find clothes that make me feel confident and look great. I’m in the process of updating my wardrobe to find clothes that make me feel great and it’s definitely been liberating moving away from the number/ size.

Because it’s just a number and I am worth so much more than that – as are you. So stop letting clothes hold you back and start living again.

As always, I hope you found something useful in this post & feel free to DM me if you need to.

Emma ♥♥