A good diet, regular exercise, periodic detoxification, and plenty of pure water are all vital components in the quest for a fit, healthy body. Making time and space for reflection, contemplation, meditation, and relaxation lowers our stress levels and enables our emotional processes, which aids us in our quest for health and well-being. In addition, I would like to suggest that the power of our thoughts plays an important role in what we see when we look in the mirror.

Most of us have probably come across ‘The Secret’ or Abraham’s ‘Law of Attraction’. If you haven’t already, then let me give you the basic premise: it is that we are powerful creators, co-creators if you will, with each other and with the Divine, creators of our lives and the world. We create our own realities. The first level of creation is our thoughts, so that whatever we find ourselves thinking about tends to manifest in our lives. This level of creation is mostly unconscious. We are a culture of over-thinkers. As such, we tend to unconsciously repeat the thoughts that we have been handed down to us, internalizing and perpetuating the norms and implicit beliefs of our culture. It is not a huge stretch to apply this same principal to the creation of our bodily health. Every thought that you have when you look in the mirror goes some way towards creating that which you see.

There is a more conscious level of creation that also involves our thoughts, and this is the level of intention. To hold an intention means to acknowledge consciously that we desire something – in this case, a beautiful body – and to create a space from which that might come into being. From the space of intention we begin to affirm that which we desire. And each affirmation is a seed from which the garden of our heart’s desire might come into bloom.

The truth is that just as most of us cannot imagine that we ‘deserve’ to be wealthy and successful, most of us also cannot imagine that we will ever have the beautiful body we so desire. And so we sabotage the fulfilment of our dreams by affirming that which we do not desire. We want a beautiful body, but every time we look in the mirror, we focus on our flaws, our imperfections and affirm them.

I have recently come out of a relationship with a man that I loved very much, and found beautiful despite his many ‘flaws’. However, he was not able to completely give himself to me because of his reservations around not finding me beautiful, especially my body. I struggled with this from time to time over the course of the relationship, lost weight, and even argued with him to defend my beauty. Eventually the relationship died, and I was left alone with my feelings of rejection and abandonment.

Two things became quite clear to me as I came back to myself after our separation. The first was that my man was not able to see my beauty because of his own feelings of ugliness, rejection, and low self-esteem, transferred onto me through the mechanism of projection. The other, more profound, realization was that my man had been the mirror – moreover the manifestation, of my own negative and critical thoughts about my body.

Since my teenage years I had looked at my body and found it not good enough. For me, the particular area of disapproval and disgust was my thighs. This was a pattern I had inherited from my mother, who has spent the whole of my life and probably the whole of her adult life trying various diets unsuccessfully to become thinner than she is. This is the common experience of many women in our culture. I am here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be this way.

As soon as I experienced the very real feeling of rejection that was my man’s painful gift to me, I realized that I had been rejecting myself all these years in my judgements that my body was not good enough. In the process of this profound discovery, I formed an intention – to recognize and celebrate the beauty that I am, and to become the beauty that I desire. From this intention, I began to affirm what I saw that I liked when I looked in the mirror. I have a good, slender, strong back. My breasts are beautiful. My curves are feminine. My legs have carried me all my life. I began to thank my body for its gifts to me. I began to spend more time naked in front of my full-length mirror. At first there were parts of myself that I just couldn’t look at (oh, the cellulite on those thighs!). In response to this I simply acknowledged the shame that I felt when I looked at these parts of myself. Meanwhile, I looked at other parts of myself and affirmed the beauty in those parts. Then I began dry brushing, and imagining all the shame and rejection that I held in my thighs - which my thighs had literally embodied - to be draining away, cleansed with each sweep of the brush. And I can tell you truthfully that my body began to change.

This happened very subtly at first, but after a couple of months, I began to notice that I actually really appreciated the form that was standing in front of me in the mirror. This was, indeed, partly due to the fact that I had changed my attitude and my focus. But because of that, and beyond that, the form I saw before me had actually changed. I was more slender, more toned, more beautiful, smoother, more in proportion. In short, I had created the beautiful body that I desired.

I could not have done this without regular exercise, a good diet with plenty of raw vegetables, plenty of pure water, and periodic detoxification, but these things had been in place off and on in my life for years. The missing ingredient that was preventing me from truly manifesting the body that I desired was the power of my thoughts and intention. We are powerful creators, and as soon as we can imagine ourselves with the body we desire, we have taken a huge leap towards actually living in that body. Just imagine what else we could create if we put our minds to it!

Author's Bio: 

Heather Mullin is Administrator and Facilitator with Karuna Detox Retreats. She specialises in bodywork, counselling and is passionate about the power of the Feminine. She recommends juice-fasting for holistic health and beauty. For more information on juice fasting, see karunadetox.com.