Recently I’ve been putting on weight… and feel ugly

Dear Gillian,

Recently I have put on a lot of weight. I lost my job some weeks ago and cannot face going out to find a new one especially looking the way I do. I have no social life, all my friends are still working and I feel really ugly and a total failure. 

Dear Maureen,

when we lose our job, home or relationship, depending on the circumstances, if these things are important to us then we almost go through a period of mourning. On top of this we so often tie up our self esteem with outward trappings, many people avoid school reunions because they feel that when asked the inevitable question ” so what do you do?” they feel the answer is somehow not good enough and will be far short of what their peers are doing. You are not a job you are so much more!

You did not tell me how or why you lost your job, or even whether you liked your job and would like to do something similar again. Sometimes the universe brings us opportunities for change that we would not take if not pushed a little and this may be one of those opportunities.

For now, stop worrying about your weight. Take this opportunity to explore your options. Firstly ask yourself what is it you would really like to do, work wise and otherwise, what makes you happy. Now you have a chance to make some changes in your life. If you are unsure about various jobs try volunteering to add to your experience. Consider taking a course in something that interests you.   Be open to new experiences.

You did not tell me if you started to gain weight before or after you lost your job. We tend to gain weight as a protective measure, a barrier between ourselves and others. This means you are coming from a place of fear and we cannot make healthy decisions when we are in that place. Loving yourself is the key to moving on in your life, using positive affirmations like “I love and accept myself” and treating yourself as you would a child that you have responsibility for and who you want to grow and be happy and healthy.

A good affirmation for you right now is

“wonderful new opportunities for my own personal growth now open up for me, I love and accept myself as I am and I make choices that are healthy and good for me”.

with love