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Can I share something with you that happened the other day that didn’t feel so good?

I was at a training/networking event and when it came time for audience questions, I stuck my hand up. All was good, until the train ride home later that afternoon. As I was scrolling through Instagram checking out photos from the event, the first photo I saw on the event organisers page was of me in the audience asking my question. I did a double-take.

That photo of me was not nice.

Unflattering is the best word I can find. It did not show my age, weight, energy level, personality or even hair (!) in the best light at all. Immediately my mood went down and I felt blah. Ironically, only moments before the photo was taken, I’d been chatting with a photographer friend attending the same event and telling her how much I loved candid photos! Well, not this one so much.

When I worked in the weight loss industry, this was the type of photo that we heard about often.

A woman would see an image of herself, be horrified or disgusted or appalled and from this place be motivated to make changes in her life. She would feel inadequate, fat, ugly, helpless. I understand that from the depths of despair, shifts can happen. But I still feel uncomfortable that the first reaction the woman had towards herself in the photo was revulsion.

Yet I touched on that feeling myself yesterday.

My initial thoughts about the photo were self-critical, the image I saw did not make we feel good. I wonder if you’ve had a similar experience? We have thoughts (‘god I look awful in that photo’), which creates feelings (shock, unhappy, unattractive) and those feelings can lead to a behaviour or action. At this point, I know these behaviours can either compound my feelings (unconscious eating, hiding away, dieting, extreme exercise) or nurture me. I chose to nurture me. Enjoy the content of the best porno studios in the 4k format 2160p download full porn videos sex movies in 4k 2160p The most popular and beautiful actresses only on our site

Which meant not looking at the photo till I had a different perspective.

And once I brought awareness to that process, I felt calmer and kinder.

It also reminded me of a conversation I’d had with a friend last week about how the image of who we are in other people’s minds is not of our weight, shape, age, size.

We are remembered for our spirit, our essence.

When I think of people I feel them, more than see them. I feel their big hearts, or their determination or their gentleness or their curiosity or their resilience or their love.

Coincidentally (or not) as I was writing this, a friend tagged me in this photo saying ‘this tree reminds me of you’. It was such a gift and a gentle nudge from the Universe – I am not my body, I am not my image in a photo.

This is who YOU are to others. You are not your body, nor an image in a photo. You are not your thighs, your tummy, your butt. You are not your age, weight, body shape.

You are a beautiful red tree, a bird in flight, an angel, a free spirit, a squishy heart, a courageous lion, a brave warrior. A Goddess. 

The invitation – and challenge – is to keep remembering who you are.

And so it is, fellow Soul Traveller!

I seriously considered sharing the photo with you, but I know as women we tend to be very protective of each other. We say things like ‘it’s not that bad’, ‘you look fine’ and other loving reassurances. And as much as I love being loved on, I’m now OK with ‘that’ photo 🙂


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Life Coach and Group Facilitator
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 Love to hear your words of wisdom, insight or experiences! Feel free to share in the Comments below. 

Join the discussion 4 Comments

  • Rachael says:

    Great post Robyn and oh so true. I think every woman can relate to that feeling of not looking their best in a pic. The age of selfies and social media have only compounded it, so it’s great to hear some honestly – and perspective that we are all much more complicated and beautiful than some random photo.
    R xx

  • Alina says:

    I’m so familiar with this feeling – and really thankful that you wrote a post about it. I admire the way you ‘leaned in’ to the feeling, and unpicked the rush towards mindlessness and numbing that many of us are pretty darned familiar with. In the process it helps us with another way of thinking when it happens!

    • Robyn Patton says:

      Thanks Alina 🙂 We certainly are here to help each other, I feel, and remind each other on this precious journey.

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