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How to EMBRACE Body Positivity with Taryn Brumfitt (Pt. 3)

By September 27, 2018March 11th, 2019Free Videos

Body positive psychologist Glenn Mackintosh interviews Director of “Embrace” & Founder of the Body Image Movement, Taryn Brumfitt. In Part 3 of this 3 Part Series, Taryn and Glenn discuss:

✔︎  How EMBRACING has nothing to do with weight.
✔︎  Losing weight in a loving way.
✔︎  One thing to keep mindful of when making food choices.
✔︎  That loving yourself feels BETTER than weight loss.
✔︎  What to focus on if you DON’T focus on the scales.
✔︎  How to stop trying to control your body (relax, your body’s got you!)
✔︎  Glenn’s favourite tip to create trust in your body.
✔︎  That Taryn NEVER has bad body-image days (really!)
✔︎  How we deal with “sh*t” days (because we DO have them!)
✔︎  How fit-bits and calorie trackers disconnect us from bodies.
✔︎  How to find movement you love (hellooo dancing in PJs)!
✔︎  Accepting your body (when others around you don’t).
✔︎  Creating space for elevated conversations around bodies.
✔︎  How to make body positive pacts with your girl group!
✔︎  Dealing with grandparents fat shaming your kids.
✔︎  Finding body positive health professionals (there are more out there than ever!)
✔︎  Taryn’s advice for people who feel weight is stopping them finding a partner.
✔︎  How Taryn’s book covers important girl stuff we didn’t have time for

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If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Part 1 where Taryn shares her personal journey (and how you can embrace body positivity too!) and Part 2 where we talk through some brilliant body-image “how tos” and discuss co-creating the body positive community together!

Links from Video:
Embrace Yourself Book
Louise Green
Turia Pitt
George Blair-West


Glenn:                     Taryn, I’m so happy to have you here for this conversation. And I’m really interested to hear what you’ve got to say. A lot of our audience, a lot of my clients, even our online clients … probably 90% of them are women.

Taryn:                      Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Glenn:                     And a lot of our listeners are living in larger bodies. So I wanted to talk to you about body positivity and embrace and how that relates to taking care of yourself with physical movement, eating, and how it relates to weight and weight loss.

Taryn:                      Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Glenn:                     So I think a big question … I could think of a million clients that have this question is … People say to me, “Yeah Glenn, I kind of get that. But to embrace I need to lose weight.” What do you say to people like that?

Taryn:                      Yeah. Well no, not at all. I mean, embracing … it’s a philosophy about how you love and respect and have endless gratitude for your body. It’s got nothing to do with weight loss, weight gain, a number on a scale. It’s finding what feels good for you. And we know a lot of people who have come on the embrace journey and have actually lost weight, and it’s just been a bit of a byproduct of living their best life. You know, for a better word … just getting out there and enjoying their bodies and eating foods intuitively and mindfully and then they happen to lose weight. And if that feels good for them, great. But again, there’s really no rules around weight loss, weight gain, and embracing. It’s just do what feels good for you.

Look, I’ve had people also come to me and say, “I want to lose weight. I embrace or I’m learning to embrace, but I want to lose weight.”

Glenn:                     And so do a lot of our people.

Taryn:                      Yeah, and I think that it’s okay to have that motivation as long as you are loving in that process.

Glenn:                     Right.

Taryn:                      I think that’s the real key difference. You know, we spoke about it before say with me and sugar and diabetes. I think it’s the exact kind of example, you know? I’m mindful of how much sugar eat because there’s diabetes in my family and I love chocolate so much.

But I sometimes go, “Okay Taryn, that’s enough. Put the chocolate down. You’ve had enough.” I think it’s the same thing with weight loss and embracing. You can do it in a loving way. Not in a fearful way.

Glenn:                     Yep. It’s so interesting you should say that because I think that we talk about dieting versus intuitive eating. And often people will come to me and say, “Glenn, what is this? What’s a meal plan? Is a meal plan or preparing my food … is that dieting or is that intuitive eating?”

And I think the more that I learn about intuitive eating the more I understand it is actually about the why. If I’m limiting my sugar intake because sugar’s a bad food and it’s gonna make me gain weight, then I’m kind of in a diet head space.

Taryn:                      Yes.

Glenn:                     But if I’m limiting my sugar because like you, there’s a family history of diabetes and you know that a lot of sugar’s not gonna be really good for your body, then it’s intuitive eating.

Taryn:                      Yeah, and it’s respectful. That’s the key difference is I’m disrespecting what I know. I’m respecting the knowledge that I have and I’m also respecting how my body feels. I certainly know when I eat ridiculous amounts of chocolate, when I’ve not been mindfully eating that chocolate. I know I go on this crazy high and then this awful low. So, yeah.

Glenn:                     You don’t have necessarily a problem with that motivation that a lot of people do have that, “Hey I do wanna lose some weight?” But you would say it’s about the process that they go through.

And I think one thing that we’ve got to be mindful of is that sometimes there is sort of diet behaviour and there is exercise that is a punishment and we can sort of veil that like it’s self love. So we’ve gotta be sure that people are not just saying that they’re doing something different, that they’re actually fundamentally doing something different. Because I get this a lot of the time in my sessions.

Taryn:                      Yeah, for sure.

Glenn:                     Clients will be doing like a 1,200 calorie meal plan and smashing themselves at the gym six days a week and they kind of try to fool me.

Taryn:                      Yeah, sure.

Glenn:                     They’re like, “This is body loving.” I’m like, “Oh, I don’t know that it kind of is.”

Taryn:                      Yeah, that’s right. Do your clients then know? Do they know when you call them out on that?

Glenn:                     They know.

Taryn:                      Are they like, “Okay, yes it is.”

Glenn:                     No … Yeah.

Taryn:                      And isn’t it nice for them to have someone just to remind them of that? I bet they kind of go, “Yeah, that doesn’t actually feel good,” because it’s the treadmill all over again, right? It’s just the weight cycling that they’re on but is doing it in a way that-

Glenn:                     In a different way.

Taryn:                      … doesn’t appear to be a diet.

Glenn:                     Absolutely, because there are so many diets that aren’t sold as diets. You know, the dieting industry’s got smart enough now that they sell diets as non-diets. And if we look at it from a psychologist’s language … When you’re making a food choice, if the number one focus is how’s this food choice going to affect my weight, then you’re dieting. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a detox or a 12-week programme or a cleanse or however you call it. You’re dieting.

Taryn:                      Yep. I think what we need to get people to keep coming back to is how they feel in their bodies. So you know when you’re talking about weight loss and someone says, “Look, I want to lose weight because I felt better a few years ago.” I’m not sure … I certainly wouldn’t get anyone to focus on the weight loss and the kilos and what’s been lost, but maybe what they were doing back then. You know, what was your lifestyle like back then? Were you just moving for pleasure and going for walks and eating more intuitively and more mindfully? Probably. Because we know that our bodies … they’re pretty clever, right?

I mean, I think we sort of over complicate it with all of these ways that we can-

Glenn:                     They’re trying to regulate it with all the rules.

Taryn:                      Correct. And it just doesn’t … Our bodies will just do what our bodies want to do all day long.

Glenn:                     It’s amazing. I know Linda Bacon is in your book, and she’s in ‘Embrace,’ the documentary. I think she says it beautifully. They’re big words, but you know us health professionals, we like big words.

Taryn:                      Go for it.

Glenn:                     She talks about your body being an amazing self-regulator. It’s like you don’t really have to calculate, “Well, I’ve exercised this much, so I should eat this much.” If you listen to your body’s natural cues, it’ll do all of the maths through the ghrelin and the leptin, the hunger and fullness hormones. It all calculate that out for you and it’ll just tell you because you’ll get hungry.

Taryn:                      And isn’t that remarkable? That is the miracle of the body, right?

Glenn:                     It is the miracle.

Taryn:                      Everybody relax. Relax! Your body’s got you. Your body’s got you back.

This reminds me … This is digressing, but I went to a hairdresser once. I was in LA and I needed to get my hair done for TV. I was really worried about going to a random hairdresser. I thought, “What could I end up with? [crosstalk 00:07:27] Am I going to walk out like Shirley Temple?” I just want a casual curl for TV.

And she just put her hand on my shoulder and she goes, “Don’t worry. I’ve got you.” And I was like, “Man, the level of comfort I felt just in those words …”

Glenn:                     The trust.

Taryn:                      The trust! And this is the trust we need to have in ourselves and our bodies.

Glenn:                     And I think that is a real [inaudible 00:07:45]. I remember I did a workshop down at FILEX, the fitness convention. And I was talking about intuitive eating and enjoyable exercise. I presented what to me was like the good story of someone who had nailed it. It’s this person who was listening to their hunger and fullness, their weight had stabilised so they were happy about that, they were enjoying food for the first time in ages. They were enjoying movement.

And I said, “How do you guys feel about this?” And there was few people like, “This is really great.” There was one guy right up the front who was a smart guy, he’s like, “Oh my God, I’d be so worried for that client.” And he said, “What are they going to do without all of the rules?”

Taryn:                      Yeah.

Glenn:                     It kind of highlighted this point to me that I think that … for us as health professionals, we need to be incredibly trusting of our clients’ ability and they have to be incredibly trusting of their own bodies. There’s a real element of learning to trust your own body.

If I don’t regulate my eating with some type of rules, or if I don’t weigh myself, or if I don’t have a set number of exercise sessions I don’t have to do for said amount of time, will my body actually take care of me?

Taryn:                      Mm-hmm (affirmative). And we know the data says, “Yes it will,” right?

Glenn:                     Absolutely.

Taryn:                      So yeah. I think that’s the message we really need to get out, and maybe that’s what everyone can take from this is that your body knows exactly what to do. Stop getting in the way of what your body wants.

Glenn:                     And Taryn, can you tell us a little bit about what’s been your personal experience with this? Because in your background, you’ve done the dieting, you’ve lost the 15 kilos, you’ve had the fitness body and everything following all of the rules. You know that that’s not the right path for you like it’s not for hardly anyone probably.

But what was that journey like for you? And it’s sort of happened through your own exploration and through the documentary, and it seems like you’ve gotten to this absolutely wonderful place now where … I’ve heard you say before that you really don’t have down days about your body. Reading your book, you’ve gotten more into the how-tos of how do the intuitive eating and enjoy more movement.

What has that been like for you to take that journey? And how hard or easy has it been to learn to trust yourself?

Taryn:                      Look, I think it’s been, what, four or five years since I stepped off that stage? Maybe five years, my gosh. Where does time go?

So yeah. I’m in this place now where I never have a bad day ever about my body. I just … I’m so in awe of it and I’m so grateful for it. I feel really blessed. Yeah, I just have a very different perspective on it now.

But in the early days, I guess it was a bit of an exploration of, “Hmm, there’s another way to think.” And it was just really … I guess educating myself and finding what are all the alternatives out there to being on this diet lifestyle? And wanting to lose the last five kilos.

I mean, my entire life was dedicated to losing the last five kilos. None of that felt good, so I guess it was just finding the alternatives that did feel good. Yeah. I mean, my body now is probably the largest it’s ever been but it’s really the healthiest it’s ever been. I have more energy. I’m just really happy. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want anyone to think, “Oh my God, she’s always happy and full of energy.”

‘Cause I have my shit days or I have my shit times. I say that just because of that whole-

Glenn:                     I think it’s important for people to know.

Taryn:                      Correct.

Glenn:                     Because people see you and you are so vibrant. And you’re so full of life and that’s obviously … it’s authentic. It’s real, it’s you.

Taryn:                      Absolutely.

Glenn:                     But that doesn’t mean that that’s you 100% of the time.

Taryn:                      No. I think last Monday I had to go, “Okay, I need to get under the dunes and watch a horror movie.” I just need to get myself some … Like yeah, I just needed to check out. And that’s okay too.

Glenn:                     So guys, if Taryn Brumfitt has bad days you are allowed. This is your permission.

Taryn:                      Thanks. Yeah, awesome.

Glenn:                     I even had clients that said the same to me. They’re like, “Oh Glenn, I had this really terrible experience or this down week.” And they’re like, “You wouldn’t have that.”

I’m like, “Well, why?”

Taryn:                      Yeah, that’s right.

Glenn:                     Because even when you get this stuff it doesn’t stop you from being a human.

Taryn:                      No, that’s right. But I think the difference is that when you are really connected to your body and to you when you have those moments, you allow them to unfold. You’re not giving yourself a hard time for having a bad day. You sit, you go, “Oh, okay. Something’s going on.”

I took myself to the beach last year. I got out of the office, I went, “I’m done for the day.” Took myself to the beach, and then when I drove home I was a different person. [crosstalk 00:12:49] That’s my-

Glenn:                     Like Superman changing in the booth.

Taryn:                      I was! It was just my body was craving just to be outside. My body was craving some vitamin D. I just needed to feel free. I got that and off I went.

Glenn:                     So there’s a real element, Taryn, here of listening. Whether it’s about food, or your physical movement, or just caring for yourself is actually listening to yourself.

Taryn:                      Yeah. I think self love and loving yourself, there is no greater love in your life than the one that you have with yourself. You know? Loving you and being your own best friend, and backing yourself, and being kind to yourself … That is key. That needs to come first above anyone else on the planet is looking after you.

And I think it’s also just having that talk of, “What do I need to do to pull myself out of this funk?” Or, “What do I need to do just to feel good?” [inaudible 00:13:44] or whatever it is. Having that talk, we all need it.

Glenn:                     Yeah. And I think it’s interesting that you’ve been on this journey and in your book there are so many people who are living in all different sizes of bodies who have made this transition at some stage. And you see in the book at various stages in their life to really almost forget about the scales and embrace the skin that they’re in.

I think those stories are so important because they … Your story, the other people in the book and in the documentary, they show people that it really is possible. Because it’s like you said before, people do get on this dieting treadmill but they really see that as the only option. People don’t necessarily know that there is another way and they need people like you who show them there is another way but that they can actually get there.

Taryn:                      Yeah.

Glenn:                     And it’s not dependent on being a certain number on the scales.

Taryn:                      That’s right. But I think it’s also … This conversation reminds me just a little bit about the disconnect that people are feeling. When we talk about backing ourselves and believing in ourselves, no one knows our bodies like we know our bodies.

We’ve just got to empower ourselves a little bit more that we know what to do. It doesn’t mean that we can’t get guidance here and there. But the classic example for me is when I … there’s a run. It’s more of a walk because it’s very uphill … in Adelaide up to the top of Mount Lofty. It takes about an hour to get up there. It’s pretty strenuous.

When I get to the top I’m like, “I made it. I’m alive.”

Glenn:                     Top of the world!

Taryn:                      Totally. That’s in my head. Because you can’t do that. Well, you could.

But I always see … I’m surrounded by people who are getting up to the top and checking their watches. And they’re like, click click. And checking how many calories they’ve burnt.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      Look, I’m not saying that those watches and those Fitbits are all bad. I’m not saying that. But I do think that we’ve gone a little bit far down the road of rather than getting to the top of that mountain and looking at the view and just going, “How awesome,” just sitting in those endorphins and enjoying that moment … we’re all of a sudden checking to see how many calories we’ve lost.

Glenn:                     It’s like-

Taryn:                      That’s a real disconnect, I think, that people are feeling.

Glenn:                     Yeah, it’s huge. Really reducing physical movement which your body is designed to do. It’s a way of loving your body and honouring it’s ability to do whatever it can into, “Oh, this is just how many calories I’ve expended.”

Taryn:                      Correct. I saw an eight year old the other day going onto a netball court have an absolute tantrum because her mom was trying to take the Fitbit off her to go on the netball court. And I thought, “Oh my gosh, here we go.” How is that young girl going to go out on the netball court and just enjoy herself and be in that moment? It’s a big, big problem.

Look, I run. And yeah, I try to keep up to a certain pace otherwise I’m like, “Taryn, that’s a fast walk.” So I have no problems with it. I’m just saying let’s have some balance around the use of Fitbits and technology.

Glenn:                     I love that. That’s a great how-to for our listeners because I know they’ll be a lot of people … ’cause when I have these discussions with clients they’re like, “Yes Glenn,” but there’s always this understanding of, “Well you don’t know my body. I can’t trust my body. Every time I’ve trusted my body in the past or let go of the rules, then I’ve just spiralled out of control.”

But I think that’s a really good how-to. Say with your physical activities, let’s forget about calories out, let’s forget about how many minutes you’ve done, and just focus on the experience and how good it feels.

Taryn:                      Yeah. To be really present, right?

Glenn:                     Yeah. Really to be really present. Because that’s where you develop the trust. You’re really listening to the body. And I think it’s the same with your eating. I know that before Taryn got here, she said, “Hey Glenn, can we pop into somewhere that will have some food? Because the options for brekky at the hotel weren’t that great. And it was you just listening to your body.

And you thinking about having to deal with me and all these conversations, and you needed energy and-

Taryn:                      I needed a banana.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      I needed a banana.

Glenn:                     But you didn’t have to have a rule book or a nutritionist or a dietician. You were just listening to the body and knowing that I need some of this particular type of nutrition is going to help me feel good. There are no rules.

Taryn:                      Yeah, that’s right. Just listening. It really is quite simple.

Glenn:                     We do over complicate it, though.

Taryn:                      We do.

Glenn:                     Yeah. So I think that’s a great take home message for people is whether it’s your eating or your physical activity, to just start to listen to yourself. Forget the rules, listen to yourself, and trust your body because it is an amazing self-regulator. And it will figure out …

I say to clients, “You don’t have to worry about your ideal weight is because your body will just do it all for you.”

Taryn:                      Yeah. Relax.

Glenn:                     You just eat well. I remember you saying in one of your Instagram posts like, “Your ideal weight,” and correct me if I’m wrong, but something like, “Your ideal weight is the weight you are when you’re living your life that you’re happy with.”

Taryn:                      Yep.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      Yeah, great. Easy, simple. And can I just … sorry. I had one more thing just about the activity and people moving their bodies.

I meet so many people that go to the gym and hate going to the gym. And they just go over, and over, and over again. How is that empowering? How is that making one feel good?

Glenn:                     It’s like a punishment for being too unfit or too fat. Yeah.

Taryn:                      Yeah! And I just think we need to remind ourselves there are a thousand ways that we can move our bodies.

Glenn:                     Yes.

Taryn:                      And there are sometimes … I love to lift lots of weights and that feels good because that’s where my head space is at. There are other times where I just … I need to be gentle. You know? The schedule might be crazy and I need to give myself some extra nourishment and I might choose to do yoga.

I think this is one of the things that people go, “Ah, I can do anything at any time?” Yes you can! Go learn how to hip hop tonight, and then next week lift some weights. Then dive in the ocean, climb a mountain, dance at home. We can all dance at home.

Glenn:                     I’m totally on the same page as you. But it’s weird for people.

Taryn:                      Yes.

Glenn:                     People are like, “I’ve been to the gym twice this week,” and people are like, “So often do you go to the gym?” And I’m like, “Well, sometimes zero. Sometimes three or four.” And they’re like, “But what’s your schedule?” I’m like, “Well, there kind of is no schedule.”

Taryn:                      Yes. And there’s the freedom right there.

Glenn:                     Yeah. The self expression.

Taryn:                      Yeah.

Glenn:                     Yeah. Now let me ask you this, Taryn. Because something that’s come to my mind is that one of the things that pulls us out of listening to ourselves and loving ourselves are other people’s opinions. So even if people kind of get this stuff for them, how do you be body positive? How do you embrace? How do you listen to yourself when you’ve got professional people sometimes? And even people in your personal life who don’t necessarily feel the same way … who aren’t embracing the diversity of shapes and sizes that we all live in.

Taryn:                      Yeah. Well, I think we’re really lucky. 10 years ago, finding a GP or anyone as a health professional who understands and believes in health in every size would have been near impossible. Correct?

Glenn:                     Correct.

Taryn:                      There are more and more popping up everywhere across Australia and that is really exciting. So maybe 10 years ago … not sure what to do, you have a choice now. Seek them out. They are out there.

So that’s in terms of the professionals.

Glenn:                     Love that.

Taryn:                      When it comes to friends and relatives … and I always ask people to make a pact with their friends. And it’s not just you’re at dinner and you start going, “Oh hey,” talking about body image and then you have a little conversation. Create a space with your friends, “Let’s catch up for a coffee. I want to talk to you about something that’s really important to me.”

Glenn:                     So sit down conversation.

Taryn:                      That’s right. But it’s creating the space, it’s not just like we’re catching up for dinner on Friday night and I’m just going to raise it then. Because it’s not then elevated. If you call your friends and go, “I have something I want to talk to you about and it’s really important to me,” they’re probably like, “What is she going to talk about?”

All of a sudden it sort of elevates and creates this space for something really dynamic to happen.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      And talk to your friends about the journey that you’ve been on, where you want to go. Some of the conversations that you have and have had over the years that perhaps don’t feel good anymore.

And ask them, “Do you think that we could maybe, I don’t know, put a ban on fat shaming? And body shaming?” I’ve done that with a bunch of my friends and it’s really funny and fascinating what happens.

Because we’ve been so programmed to make a judgement  and to say something about other people.

Glenn:                     Yeah, it’s just …

Taryn:                      Or about ourselves. It just rolls off our tongue, right?

A friend of mine … we were going to [00:22:59] Barley’s a couple of years of go and she was talking about bather’s and she immediately went, “Oh my God, I’ve got to go bather shopping. I hate my body.” Whatever she said.

And someone else called her out and went, “That’s not very embracing.” And she’s like, “Oh, yeah. It’s not. Oops.” And then we just carried on. We do forget because we are so programmed.

So having a pact with your friends-

Glenn:                     I love that.

Taryn:                      … to start kind of removing the conversations that aren’t helpful.

Glenn:                     We call that, with our clients, a no-fact talk.

Taryn:                      Yeah, nice.

Glenn:                     Yeah. But it is … it’s not just a blanket rule. It’s about having the conversation and figuring out what works for you. Because it’s like we were talking about before. It’s not a one size fits all, you know? It’s up to you as a group to figure out, “Well, there are these common ways we do to kind of hate on our bodies and judge other people’s bodies.” And that’s not a great thing for us. So what do we want to do differently?

Taryn:                      Yeah. And get really proactive. It’s like calling a meeting. It feels really odd.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      But if you want to do something and actually do it and not just have it as a passing conversation. Then create the space. Creating the space is important. It’s like relatives … it’s something that I suggest to many parents who their parents, the grandparents of the kids, say really unhelpful things.

Glenn:                     Ah, yes.

Taryn:                      It’s like, “Ouch.” You know? The whole, “Oh, you’re so pretty.” Or, “Be careful what you eat.” Just this messaging that is really bad.

Glenn:                     Or if it’s just like, “You’ve gained weight.” Or sometimes the grandparents just say it.

Taryn:                      Correct. And as a parent you just go, “Oh my gosh. How do I … ” So again, calling out that parent and saying, “I need to talk to you about something. It’s really important to me. This is really upsetting me.” And having that dialogue. Do you understand what I’m saying about how much it elevates that really important conversation?

Glenn:                     I think that’s such a powerful message because it’s different to just … and so many of clients in the future are going to be hearing this. It’s different to just calling someone else when it happens. You’re actually taking a pause point to say, “Let’s create a space to have a real conversation and create some real and lasting change.”

Taryn:                      Yep.

Glenn:                     I absolutely love that. So when it comes to health professionals, this is not … you know? 1990’s. You are going to be able to find people. And even though we have a lot of people that if they can’t find someone in a small town, there are people you can see. Dieticians, psychologists, even virtual trainers like [00:25:27] Louise Green on Skype or online.

So there are people that you could see. When it comes to your network, elevate the conversation and … You know, I love that. I think sometimes it’s important for people to have those little mechanisms and I love those words of, “I need to talk to you about something.”

Taryn:                      And make no mistake. It probably … it might be a little uncomfortable too. But you think about it from, say, a parent’s perspective or their child speaking to the grandparents. Would you rather just have 10, 15 minute conversations that’s a little bit uncomfortable? Or rather than having your child grow up battle with their body and their weight?

Same as friends. Friends and friends, friends who say unhelpful things. You’ve just got to nip it in the bum and say, “No, we’re not doing this anymore.”

Glenn:                     Yeah, I love that. And I often find sometimes I’ll encourage clients to have similar conversations. I’m going to do better now that we’ve had this conversation.

But sometimes even I’m surprised. And I might even have a child talking to her parent about this and I think, “Oh jeez, the parent’s pretty strong. Pretty militant in their diet and it’s not going to go well.” And they’ve had a proper conversation and have been surprised with the result.

Because of course a lot of those people, they are sort of shaming the person without knowing it. Or they’re trying to help. So the people do want to help, it’s just about helping them understand what’s really going to help and support that person.

Taryn:                      Yeah.

Glenn:                     So the last thing I want to ask … and you’ve actually answered all of our audience’s questions from our Facebook group.

Taryn:                      Excellent!

Glenn:                     But one I’m going to ask because I have so many clients and no one’s been brave enough to ask it … is specifically for women and specifically for single women. I see a lot of single women who feel like their bodies are getting in the way of them kind of finding the right partner.

Taryn:                      Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Glenn:                     And some of them will kind of have actually had sort of feedback from people. It’s like, “You’ve got a really pretty face,” or “I think you’re really lovely, but this weight thing is a thing for me.” When I hear them, I’m like, “Oh, you dickhead.”

But then I kind of … I’m sort of trying to grapple with the reality that these people are struggling. So what would you say to somebody who’s worried about how the way that they look is going to affect their dating life and their ability to find a partner?

Taryn:                      Mm-hmm (affirmative). Well, this has come up in quite a few times for me too. I’ve had people ask this question.

Glenn:                     Yeah.

Taryn:                      And I always throw it back and say, “Would you want to be with somebody who puts the focus on your weight gain or your weight loss? Is that really what you want as a foundation of your relationship?” And of course the answer is no.

You know, we want to connect and be with people because of who they are the things that they do, and the times and the joy that you spend, and common interests, and all of that’s what makes a relationship. [crosstalk 00:28:30]

Glenn:                     I love that. It’s not would you want me? But would I want someone who is going to make that a focal point of the relationship?

Taryn:                      Correct. Yeah.

Glenn:                     That’s so interesting and it’s a great point, Taryn. It speaks to this … You know, I see a lot of people … probably most of the people that I see are in a relationship. And they’re often worried that their bodies change of time. Will my partner accept my body?

I kind of say, “Well, if your partner’s still with you and they’re happy with you then it provides that safety net.” But of course people don’t want to be with someone that I’ve got to be a certain size, or shape, or have this certain look for you to accept me.

Taryn:                      It’s pretty shallow, isn’t it? To think that you would marry someone or want to be with someone just because of how they look?

Glenn:                     It’s amazing-

Taryn:                      Think about [inaudible 00:29:16] in the film. You know how she changed [inaudible 00:29:20]? How much her body and her face and every part of her changed? And Michael loves her because he loves her, not because he loves her body. And the size of her body.

Glenn:                     And Matt, you know. You’ve been all shapes of sizes and he’s supported you the whole time. So interesting that you should say it’s very shallow and very superficial.

One of my mentors, a guy named [00:29:40] George Blair-West, he’s a psychiatrist and he specialises in weight and relationships. And he says … it’s so similar to what you’ve just said. He said, “So if you want to find a partner and just look your very best to find a partner and that be the basis of the relationship, you’re going to get really good at selecting really shallow, superficial people who are going to be terrible relationship partners.” It’s a great way to find a terrible relationship.

Taryn:                      Yes. Absolutely it is. Yeah. It’s setting you up for disaster and divorce if you’re gonna …

So find someone that loves you and loves your spirit and loves the time that you spend together.

Glenn:                     I absolutely love that.

Taryn, thank you so much for spending this time with us. The messages I’m getting out of this is learn to trust your body, forget the rules because your body can take care of itself, and in that context of trusting your body … get the right people around you. Whether it’s professionals, whether it’s your social network by making those pacts, and having those elevated conversations.

And also that extends to the new people that you choose to accept or not accept into your life.

Taryn:                      Absolutely.

Glenn:                     Now I do want to just quickly talk about your book because by the time that people get to this conversation, the book will be out. So much of the stuff we’ve talked about today is in the book in a lot of detail.

I want to encourage everyone to go out there and read it. It’s a brilliant how-to and I love that. You’re getting into … like what we’ve done today, some of the real nitty gritty. And a lot of the things that we’ve talked about today are covered in the book in a lot more detail.

There are some things that we haven’t talked about which I’m so happy we don’t have time to talk about. Boobs, and sex, and there’s stuff about vulvas in the book. It’s so terribly shameful that we don’t have time to talk about that.

Taryn:                      Boobs, sex, and vulvas. I love that that [inaudible 00:31:54].

Everyone’s going to be like, “I need to go get that book.”

Glenn:                     “Ooh, okay.”

They’ll be going, “No, it’s just for the body positive stuff.” Wink.

Taryn:                      Exactly.

Glenn:                     Taryn, thank you so much for being with us and coming on the show. I hope everyone reaches out to you if they haven’t. If they’ve been sort of lying under a rock for a few years, they have to watch ‘Embrace.’ We’ll definitely provide all the links for ‘Embrace Yourselves.’ Beautiful book.

Taryn:                      Awesome.

Glenn:                     So thank you. And thank you for all of the beautiful work you do.

Taryn:                      Aw, thank you for having me. It’s such a pleasure.