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” She is skinny, I like her dress, her flowing hair and her fabulous make-up. If only I looked like. ” How many of you are constantly comparing yourselves to other people. By comparing ourselves to others, we are in fact setting ourselves up to feel insecure, have low self-esteem and a poor body image. We are setting ourselves up to feel as a failure and that we are not good enough. We have so much pressure from the media and society to look like a supermodel that we forget about what we do have to offer and in fact how amazing our bodies truly are. Do you wish to continue your life in pursuit of that perfect body or would you rather spend your time and energy enjoying what you have accomplished with friends and family?
In moving toward a sense of wellness, let’s talk about the tools to work on your mind. Let us move you toward understanding, appreciating and accepting your body so that you can finally learn to love who you are and your body shape. These are the three steps toward a happier you.
1. Awareness: It is important to understand how miraculous your body actually is. Biologically and physically, our bodies are masterpieces that perform at a high level every moment. We also need to appreciate that we consume food to provide fuel for our bodies so that we can function in many different capacities. Think about your body and it’s limitations before you decided to have surgery and the improvements that you have made since then. Learn to practice mindfulness. In other words, we need to begin paying attention and listening to our body’s cues of hunger, fullness, fatigue and pain. This will help us to differentiate between our emotional and physical hunger.
2. Acceptance: We can move toward acceptance of our present situation and what is, rather than dwelling or longing for what is not. To facilitate this, we can begin to think about our positive intrinsic qualities and rehearsing positive statements about ourselves such as, I am a caring person. Be kind to yourself and pay attention to the words you choose in speaking to yourself. Stop verbally abusing yourself! Also, in the same way that we expect normal weight fluctuations with each day or month, we should also realize that we have our own unique genetics and body type.
3. Assistance: Realize that you deserve encouragement when life gets tough and you feel stressed. It’s okay to reach out to friends, family or professionals for support. Let those close to you know who you are by expressing your needs and wants.
By Heidi R. Cherwony, Psy.D.
Thank you for the consultation and wonderful service. We were very anxious about getting our daughter tested for gifted placement.
Dr. Cherwony, you made our experience an easy and valuable one. As promised, you spent extensive time
with us helping to determine the best school placement for our daughter.
The feedback we were given was worth every penny!
Thanks again. - Marie D
Dr. Cherwony, you have been an angel in my life. When I first met you at my pre-surgical bariatric evaluation, you told me that food was my addiction and to think about what I was trying to hide from. Your words rang true for me after my surgery and then I realized I needed to see you.
I want to thank you deeply for all your compassion and support during my journey to health and wellness. I can't believe how
much you have taught me. - Lindsay C
My only regret was that I waited 2 months before starting to see Dr. Cherwony. I struggled with depression and loads of guilt following the birth of my first child. It was not how I had expected it to be. It was the most devastating time for me. Thank you so much Dr. C for helping me to understand and deal with my PPD and insomnia, and for helping my family to deal better with myself. - SR