I hated my body and it took me a long time to accept it.

Having grown up in a diet culture, I hated my body and was often bullied for my appearance as a child.

My perception of my body changed when I became physically active at the age of 18 and discovered my physical and mental capabilities. 

I saw my body in a more positive light, thinking less about what it looks like and more about what it can do. 

My energy level increased and I was happier to be doing something for myself. 

As a result of this dedication and discipline, I developed self-respect, a sense of responsibility, and a sense of growth. 

(Disclaimer: I definitely did not feel anything during my first gym session it took months of dedication and consistency to feel absolutely anything).

My Journey…

I left Lebanon in 2016 to pursue my Masters. A mentor told me to choose a topic I’m passionate about when I picked my thesis. I have always been passionate about movement and everything it entails.

My commitment to movement and the changes I experienced with respect to how I view my body inspired my MSs thesis. In my thesis, I examined the influence advertising has on our identity in the fitness industry. 

Later, I created an Instagram page (fitnessbyzee), where I posted about my fitness journey. A good number of people followed me, and I enjoyed posting.

Following that, I became a certified personal trainer. 

Few months after that I started Elphit, the brand I created for myself, and for women like me, to understand their value and their worth.

A very short while after starting Elphit, I deleted my Instagram page and stayed away from social media for around 2 years. I went from posting 10 x a day to 0 posts. 

Why did I delete my Instagram page?

Back then, I reached a point where I no longer felt comfortable sharing my personal journey online, so I deleted the page. 

Here’s why.

I knew one thing; for me to grow, I needed to embrace the dark side. 

I cannot put out a fire with fire. I needed to accept and embrace my flaws in order to have the clarity and space to change them if that is what I wanted to do.

It was necessary for me to stay away from social media. I needed to go within and isolate myself from everyone so that I would be the sole judge of myself. I wanted to seek validation from myself only and not from anybody else.

I also hold the value of being honest with myself and with others very dear to my heart, and I could not convey to the world my dissatisfaction with my body. I could not share that my body made me feel ashamed and embarrassed. So I had to stay away because I knew that the process of accepting myself especially in the initial stages is long and dreadful.

Through that time, I learnt what some of my insecurities, limitations and traumas are. 

Where am I now?

I would be lying if I said that I am at a point where I fully love or accept myself. 

But, I am at a stage where I realize that sometimes I do not like my body and I am completely fine with that.

I am not happy with myself 24/7 but the difficult moments are fewer and further between. I am in the process of accepting everything and growing from it. 

I am ready to express myself online again because I have reached a point where I am my own validation. 

I will share my thoughts through this space not for the sake of likes and comments but for the sake of sharing who I am and my core values.

I am willing to openly express my raw self because I am aware that I am complete on my own and others compliment me.

What does Elphit mean to me?

Elphit is home to me, and here we teach and preach the importance of self-love in order to prevent anyone from falling for the lies and deceptions of self-hatred. 

Elphit is a space for liberation from all forms of toxic diet culture and fat phobia.

In this space, we are human, raw, beautiful and free. 

If we start with self acceptance, we will have nothing else but acceptance to give and that is how we will make this world a better place. 

Will Movement change your life?

Movement is what saved me. Movement liberated me. 

The purpose of my post is not to imply that movement will liberate you or make you accept yourself, but rather to share my experience with you. Even so, I believe exercising will definitely move something within you. If not, that is perfectly valid as well, but I am sure it will at least make you feel more energetic. 

My goal is not to romanticize movement and turn it into a magic pill that will make you love and accept yourself. 

However, I am saying that your body belongs to you and only you. There are a lot of opinions out there about what your body should look like, but they are all invalid and not needed (without exception).

You have the right to be fat, skinny, muscular, tall, short. You have the right to feel free.

6 thoughts on “I hated my body and it took me a long time to accept it.”

  1. My big sister died already had trauma went me to lose weight till 55 kg I was 55kg and i had a big trauma my fiance died and my parents didn’t accept my griefing and made me leave home and live alone and i already had severe pain from period menses and i saw more than 7 gynecologists and i came in an conclusion of endometriosis but now not ready financialy to do more tests and see more doctors i am now 90 kg from steroidal cortison and unhealthy lifestyle..and so sad alone believe me or not i don’t like myself anymore. When i read your article i cried i said i hope one day i will have the courage like you. I love you very much stay safe

    1. I am so sorry you are going through all of this. It’s a process and you will reach a point where you accept and appreciate your self and your body for all it’s going through. I believe it and you should too!
      Just remember, that your body is keeping you alive during all of this. <3

  2. Diala Kobeissi

    I love this, accepting and loving yourself is a journey, it doesn’t come in days or weeks or even years. Constantly working on self-love and self-development has helped me a lot, and as you said it is you loving yourself and not the society loving how you look, and that is the hardest part. The physical exercise is a big part of it as it is where the journey starts, and it is very important to keep moving, the more you do it the more you will mentally and physically strong. Feeling at ease and at peace with our bodies boosts our confidence and mental state, and it is important not to compare ourselves to others.

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