What would you do if you didn’t feel held back by how you perceive your body? Body image coach Melissa Toler shares encouraging tips on how we can stop body image worries from interfering with living our best life.
Getting a handle on body image can make all the difference
Many women struggle with body image issues, in part because we are surrounded by messages relating to the way we look that may hinder our ability to create the life we want.
My guest in this episode, Melissa Toler, helps women develop healthy body images as a certified wellness coach. She doesn’t necessarily help women lose weight, but works with women to free themselves from the dieting roller coaster and learn to love their bodies and achieve their goals.
Every day is different for Melissa, but she does have a weekly routine. Mondays are for planning and analyzing metrics from the previous week, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are dedicated to clients, Thursdays are for batch writing and marketing, and Fridays can be a catch-all or a social media day.
She has tried different morning routines over the years, but the one she currently enjoys is having breakfast, working for a few hours, then taking a break to go to the gym to combat afternoon sluggishness. She noticed she’s more focused in the mornings and in the evenings. Working out in the afternoons helps energize her and keep her focused.
As a culture, we tend to give advice that seems like it’s good for everyone. … Learn how to trust and listen to your body and what you want.” ~ Melissa Toler
Social media is a distraction for Melissa, who sometimes finds herself spending more time on it than necessary. She tries to corral it by setitng aside 20-30 minutes to Facebook, Instagram, her business page, and groups, and then shutting it down and moving on to other work. She sets a timer on her phone to help keep her focused.
Another challenge she deals with is finding herself trying to do everything that pops into her head — overestimating her ability to get everything done and underestimating the time it takes to get it done. Melissa tries to focus completely on getting just one thing done and focusing on that one thing. If she gets one thing done, she finds she has the energy to get more accomplished.
My most productive days are when I can get just one thing done, and I call that a success.” ~ Melissa Toler
How body image impacts productivity
Melissa understands how big a part weight loss and body image can play, and she believes the focus on this disconnects us from our bodies and our lives. If you’re focusing on your body image and how you feel about yourself, you’re not using your energy to focus on what’s really important in your life.
Melissa says she notices how we’re influenced by the things that surround us: culture, media, people around us, etc. Melissa recommends doing a detox — not a health detox, but a detox from the things that make you feel like you have to do something about your body and weight.
Take steps to become happy with how you look now, not how you would be happier 20 pounds lighter. Learn to recognize the messages around us that can interfere with our ability to feel loved or worthy.
She asks her clients what they would do if they were thinner — and emphasizes that you don’t have to wait until you reach a certain weight or size to do these things.
Productivity tools Melissa uses
Melissa relies heavily on her calendar. She blocks off time on her calendar for her clients, and she also color-codes her time between work and personal time on her Google Calendar. She’s noticed when she has evening plans she looks forward to, she has more of a drive to get things done during the day instead of letting work bleed over into the evenings.
Realizing she’s more of a sprinter when it comes to completing tasks, she uses the timer on her phone to help keep her focused on one task for a specific amount of time.
She also loves and recommends The Passion Planner.
One of her favorite productivity-related books is Gary Keller’s The One Thing.
What happens on a day you feel gets away from you?
Step back from it all and just take a breath.” ~ Melissa Toler
For Melissa, that sense of overwhelm or “runaway day” is usually the result of a tech issue or putting too many things on her calendar. When that happens, her first instinct is to try to force productivity, but she realized it doesn’t make the situation better. She recommends stepping back and taking a breath and then maybe asking someone else for help.
What’s on the horizon for Melissa?
Melissa will be hosting another mental detox program starting July 11. There are still spots open in Melissa’s one-on-one coaching program, The Body-Mindset Experience. Visit her website for more information.
Final thoughts from Melissa
Get connected with what it is that you truly want and desire in your life. Listen to that inner voice instead of the voices around you.” ~ Melissa Toler
Connect with Melissa
Melissa Toler is a writer, speaker, and body image coach. She spent 25 years on the diet roller coaster, losing and gaining the same 20 pounds, while hating her body and herself in the process.
In 2013, Melissa left her corporate job of 15 years to start her own coaching practice. As a coach, her work is all about helping women break free from constant dieting and self-loathing so they can discover who they truly are. Her mission is to help women live incredible lives without having to change their bodies to do it.
What do you think?
Do you have questions for Melissa? Did anything she said particularly resonate with you? I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments on this episode. Please feel free to ask your questions or share your thoughts with me by emailing me, commenting on our Facebook page, or leaving a comment below.
Reminders and Notices
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Shayne Murphy says
Laura, this was a great episode. I have struggled and still struggle with body image for a long time and this episode made me realize how much that struggle is getting in my way of being the best that I can be.
Laura McClellan says
I’m so glad you liked it, Shayne. I really enjoyed talking to Melissa and felt like she offered some real insight and encouragement for those who struggle with body image issues–which is a lot of us!! Was there anything specific Melissa said that really resonated with you?
Melissa Toler says
Shayne, thanks for listening! I’m glad you got something valuable out of my conversation with Laura. If you’d like some helpful resources to help you with this, feel free to take a look at my website or contact me directly using the form on the site.