Often when someone is obese, they live in a world where they do not feel validated by anyone around them. Nothing they contribute to a project or to a conversation is recognized as having as much merit as those of a “normal weight”
This is borne out by statistics sadly. Perhaps you have not personally been invisible in your job or in your social circle, but the fact of the matter is that the world at large discounts much of what an obese person says and gives it less credence than if someone of the same age and gender are of regular weight and are also giving an opinion.
There was an experiment on one of those weekly shows years ago where a woman put on a “fat suit” and applied for jobs undercover. She applied for everything from entry level jobs to executive level jobs. Each time, a professional resume writer gave her credentials from heaven, an ivy league pedigree or made her a business school valedictorian from Wharton or somewhere equally as impressive. Each time, they gave lesser credentials to a slim pretty woman but they gave her resume enough to get an interview. Same degree etc., just not as many accomplishments and less experience.
You know how it ended. Every single time, the slimmer woman received the offer of employment. It did not matter for what job either. It did not matter if the
hiring manager was male or female. It happened across the board and every time.
They also had two women have a car break down in broad daylight on the side of the road. One was heavy and one was slim. Not a single person stopped to ask the heavier woman if she needed help or could they call someone. At least 6 people, both men and women, stopped to ask the slim pretty woman if she needed help.
The funny thing is that a truly beautiful woman or handsome man may not be taken as seriously once they land the job. They may be viewed as less intelligent than their more “normal” looking counterparts and a bias exists toward them too. When polled, people were asked if they would rather be considered beautiful or intelligent, that poll showed that the majority of people valued intelligence above physical beauty. Looks fade but smart is forever was bandied about quite a bit in that article.
The point of this piece is that often we are looking outside of ourselves for validation. We want people to notice that we are smart and good at the things we do. While kudos for a job well done and promotions at work for doing above and beyond are important, the most important thing we can do is to practice SELF LOVE and to give ourselves a pat on the back for a job well done.
My friend Pam pointed me to a blog article recently written by another April in this community. She wrote about recently hitting 100 pounds lost and was wondering “now what” because she was originally looking at it from a perspective of others to validate this amazing accomplishment. While some people did, others reacted to it as more of a (am paraphrasing here) “Wow, you lost that much and you are still heavy so you must have been super heavy” type of response, maybe not out loud but she saw it in their face when she told people about her 100 pound loss.
When I read Pam’s (Pmahn2009) blog last night , it reminded me that we always need to validate our own accomplishments and feelings and stop worrying so much what others think about our weight loss. She further pointed out that we have each-other to celebrate with and our loved ones who truly care.
I really found these two blogs profound. They really hit home with me (Thanks April and Pam) and made me realize that the only one who is truly important is ME when it comes to my accomplishments. No one else matters. If I am happy with my progress, even if it is 20 lbs when I need to lose 100, that is what makes all the difference.
Loving myself is the lesson I took from this. I know what I have done is amazing and very few people lose that much weight. (except around here cause there are a lot of big Losers)
I rock! So do you! Celebrate YOU!