How a trip to Italy changed my body image.

I say all this knowing that I stand in the realms of what is currently considered ‘thin’ – but in Rome I am taller and wider than the local average. I complained about it to an Italian friend, Giulia, as we munched on cornetto (the Italian answer to a croissant) and espresso one morning in Sardinia.

Giulia didn’t have it though. She quickly interrupted my self-critical complaints by describing my body as “abundant” or, in English, abundant.

I almost cried when she said that – not only did she derail my negative thoughts, but she reworked my words into something aspirational. Yet another lesson: language matters, as does self-talk.

What does your self-talk look like today? Listen to this episode of Fill My Cup, where host Allira Potter shares what she calls “Mirror Talk,” to change our minds and bring more self-love. The post continues below.

The main trick is that Italians think and act a lot – whereas when we think about health and wellness, we think less. Less time for ourselves, rather spent in a boring exercise class that we don’t like, less food that we crave, less sleep so we can get up early and go to the gym…I don’t don’t know about you, but I want to be in the mindset that more is more. In fact, that’s what I’m actively aiming for now.

I have lived in Italy before, although this time I saw everything in a new light through my adult eyes. Italians are nutritionally fed, yes (the Mediterranean diet is known to be one of the best for heart health). But it’s not really what they eat that matters, it’s how they live.

To put it in more Australian terms, it’s not about the sausage; it’s about the sizzle.

With this recent boost from la dolce vita, I have definitely felt more confident. This summer, back underground, I’m actively leaning towards more olive oil, more time lingering over lunch, more lipstick, and always complementing my outfits with more accessories.

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