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Wellness
Published Thursday Nov 21, 2019 by Sara Lesher

How I Learned to Love My Appearance By Ditching Negative Talk

Personal Growth
Motivation
Perspective

I have always been guilty of negative self-talk. I constantly make little comments about my physical appearance—the way my pants are fitting, the extra frizz in my hair today. The list goes on and on. I think this is something we’ve all been guilty of, maybe without even realizing it. 

I used to live in an apartment with three other girls, and I began to notice we were all continually putting ourselves down. I thought, I hate hearing my roommates speak negatively about their physical appearance, so why do I do the same? When our comments reached an all-time high, we decided we wanted to change.

So here’s what we did... 

We came up with a simple game. Each time one of us would speak negatively about her physical appearance, she would receive a tally under her name on a list. The person with the least amount of points at the end of three months would win a prize. Simple.

And here’s what we learned...
We used negative self-talk a lot more than we realized.

I knew I spoke badly about myself pretty often. We all did. That’s why we chose to do this experiment. But, I don’t think any of us realized how bad it truly was until we started seeing the “numbers” add up. Having a visual representation of our negativity was powerful, leading to an even greater desire for change. 

1
We used negative self-talk a lot more than we realized.

I knew I spoke badly about myself pretty often. We all did. That’s why we chose to do this experiment. But, I don’t think any of us realized how bad it truly was until we started seeing the “numbers” add up. Having a visual representation of our negativity was powerful, leading to an even greater desire for change. 

Humor is a powerful substitute.

When we caught ourselves saying something negative, we’d laugh and replace it with something opposite. For example, if I were about to say my pants were too tight, I’d catch myself and say, “Wow, my ass is just too great for these jeans!” Our self-love sarcasm method not only helped us cut back on our tallies, but it also helped create a more positive feeling in our apartment. Rather than being upset over the way we looked, we’d find ourselves laughing hysterically at each other. Instead of individually putting ourselves down in the mirror, we all yelled compliments about ourselves across the apartment. It was actually fun.

2
Humor is a powerful substitute.

When we caught ourselves saying something negative, we’d laugh and replace it with something opposite. For example, if I were about to say my pants were too tight, I’d catch myself and say, “Wow, my ass is just too great for these jeans!” Our self-love sarcasm method not only helped us cut back on our tallies, but it also helped create a more positive feeling in our apartment. Rather than being upset over the way we looked, we’d find ourselves laughing hysterically at each other. Instead of individually putting ourselves down in the mirror, we all yelled compliments about ourselves across the apartment. It was actually fun.

My words affect others.

My roommates and I didn’t realize how much our words affected one another. Our comparison skewed our visions of ourselves. On a night when I was feeling particularly unattractive and thought my roommate looked amazing, her negative self-talk only made me feel worse about myself and vice versa. By eliminating it altogether, I not only helped myself, but the people around me as well. 

3
My words affect others.

My roommates and I didn’t realize how much our words affected one another. Our comparison skewed our visions of ourselves. On a night when I was feeling particularly unattractive and thought my roommate looked amazing, her negative self-talk only made me feel worse about myself and vice versa. By eliminating it altogether, I not only helped myself, but the people around me as well. 

Our negative talk was just a bad habit.

By the end of the three months, we would naturally catch ourselves before making any self-hating comments, virtually eliminating them from our home. I realized when I didn’t hear my roommates hating on themselves, I automatically felt better about my own appearance. Before long, the humor was no longer a coping mechanism, but a powerful tool for self-love. Of course, we all have our days. However, my overall view of myself has improved a ton since then. Negative self-talk is just a habit, and breaking it can change your life.

4
Our negative talk was just a bad habit.

By the end of the three months, we would naturally catch ourselves before making any self-hating comments, virtually eliminating them from our home. I realized when I didn’t hear my roommates hating on themselves, I automatically felt better about my own appearance. Before long, the humor was no longer a coping mechanism, but a powerful tool for self-love. Of course, we all have our days. However, my overall view of myself has improved a ton since then. Negative self-talk is just a habit, and breaking it can change your life.

Sara Lesher
Written by
Sara Lesher
Lifecycle Program Manager
About the author
Spoiled by the San Diego sunshine, Sara’s hobbies include beaching, hiking, concert-going, and brewery-hopping. A former English major, she naturally loves reading and writing… so if you have any book recommendations, let her know. And just between us: she’s committed to health and wellness but loves a good taco (shoutout TJ Tacos in Escondido).
people in upward dog practicing yoga on mats
Fitness
Published Wednesday Jul 28, 2021 by Bree Lewis

Sweat Redemption: 5 Tips for Getting Back Into Your Hot Yoga Practice

Yoga
Fitness
Expert Advice

If you’ve ever taken a hot yoga class, you know it’s always going to be one thing—outrageously hot. Not the “let’s hang by the pool and get that sun-kissed glow” kind of hot either. I’m talking that “I can't believe I have this much sweat in my body” and “I may or may not pass out” kind of hot. It’s nothing to mess around with, and after a year or so of not being able to go, it’s easy to forget just how serious that heat can be.

To get the maximum enjoyment and benefits out of your heated yoga classes, you need to prepare yourself before and take care of yourself afterward. Luckily, I’ve been taking some classes (sweating enough for the both of us) and I’ve listed my five favorite must-dos to help you readjust to your heated classes and get back to the hot yoga summer that we all want.

1. Go at your own pace

Heated classes are difficult in nature. The normal difficulty of regular poses is mixed in with the added challenges of sweating and dealing with the humidity and the heat (at times, I’ve seen the thermostat climb to 108 degrees—yikes!). Depending on what type of yoga class you’re taking (sculpt, Bikram, power vinyasa), the difficulty level and temperature are going to vary. It’s also important to remember that each person in the room is going to practice in a way that’s unique to them. Hours slept, hydration levels, food intake, and different lifestyles are all contributing factors that make our practices different. What you practice on your mat is your own––trust your body and only do what feels right to you.  And remember, it’s okay to take breaks!

2. Hydrate like your life depends on it (honestly, it might)

The rise in temperature mixed in with the humidity that we all know and love creates the perfect recipe for sweating—like A LOT. You go into a heated class dry and come out feeling like you just took a dip in the pool. Before heated classes, I had no idea it was physically possible to sweat that much. If you’re going to a heated class, especially after a long break, it’s easy to forget just how much you might sweat. Is it possible to lose that much water if you haven’t consumed it first? Trust me, going into your heated class super hydrated is going to make a world of difference and help you feel good throughout your practice. And don’t forget to take some sips of H2O while you’re practicing!  

3. Nourish your body

Heated classes are challenging, but I can’t stop going. Nothing quite compares to overcoming the challenge— and experiencing the cleanse my body feels after I’m done. It’s the perfect blend of hard and rewarding, but I couldn’t do it if my body wasn’t properly nourished. On the days I know I have a heated class booked; I like to make sure I am eating right. I make sure to take my vitamins and fuel my body with fruits, vegetables, and my favorite superfood shake. I hold off on food about an hour before my practice, so I feel comfortable. After the class, I like to replenish with a big protein shake (boosted with collagen to aid with muscle recovery and skin elasticity). There is no one-way path for properly nourishing your body but making sure you’re fueled for the challenge of a heated class is essential for getting the most out of your practice and feeling good on and off your mat.

4. Replenish those electrolytes

Increasing and maintaining your water intake on the days you take a heated class is important, but sometimes you need something a little extra. If you’re sweating that much, you’re basically an athlete (at least in my book) and if you’re performing like a rockstar yogi, you need to hydrate like one as well. That means replenishing those lost electrolytes. Reward yourself and your body for the hard work and treat yourself to your favorite drink. I switch off between electrolyte-boosting drinks and coconut water depending on what I’m in the mood for that day. Adding these to my post-practice self-care routine has helped me feel more hydrated after and ready to take on the world again after especially sweaty classes.

5. Bring the right equipment

Usually, a yoga mat is all you need for your practice––but heated classes are a different ballgame. I’ve gone with just a mat, and I’ve slipped all over the place. Let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than having sweat drip all over the place while you’re trying to hold a pose that makes you grip your mat for dear life (never again). Make sure you bring a towel to place over your mat, this will help with support and grip. Bringing a smaller towel is also a good idea. You can use the smaller towel to dry yourself off during water breaks or whenever you’re feeling just a bit too sweaty. This is a small step that makes a world of difference during those super-hot classes.

So, there you have it. Five of my favorite tips (more like lifesavers) that have helped me readjust to those heated classes I love so much. Getting back into it is a challenge for us all, so know you’re not alone. No matter where you’re at in your practice, remember to be kind and gentle to yourself––celebrating your health and your body’s ability to do what you love. We’re all just getting back out there, together.

Ready to jump back into your hot yoga routine? Browse Mindbody to find the perfect class for you

While you’re at it, check out some Intro Offers near you that can help you get back to your cadence of hot yoga classes.

bree lewis headshot
Written by
Bree Lewis
Marketing Content Associate
About the author
Born and raised in a small mountain town just south of Yosemite National Park, Bree is an avid lover of health, wellness, and connecting to the outside world around us. As a Cal Poly English major alumn, she has a knack for books, writing, and all things words. In her free time, she enjoys being outside, drinking craft beers, and keeping life jazzy!