Do you love your body? You should. You spend every minute of the day with it, it’s been part of your life since before you were born, and it’s going to travel through the rest of your life with you. In fact, your body is really your best friend. It protects you, it helps you communicate with other people, and it makes it possible for you to do the things you need to do every day.

So how do you treat your best friend? I thought so. Fortunately, there’s that thing about our good friends in life. We don’t always treat them as well as we should, and yet they come right back to support us.

Truly loving your body isn’t just about how it looks in the mirror, or what numbers come up when you step on a scale, although you could be forgiven for thinking that’s the case. Hollywood and the media make us think that our body’s entire value comes down to how it looks and how well it fits into a skimpy dress. Is your body perfect? No, but neither are your other friends. Yet that doesn’t interfere with your appreciation for who they are and what they bring to your life.

What would your body say if we asked it about how well you treat it? Do you take care of it and concentrate on meeting all of its needs? Or do you neglect it and push it aside to focus on something you want? Sure, you can pass up that healthy salad for a tasty cheeseburger and fries, but how is your body going to react to that?

Instead of worrying so much about how your hair and face look, or about what you weigh at any given moment, what if you resolved to truly make your body your BFF? Suppose you put just as much effort into nurturing this friend as you do into giving into temptations? Imagine if you ate more of the right things and passed up more of the wrong ones. Consider what would happen if you did more than an occasional workout at the health club. What if you put less effort into finding the right base and lipstick, and put more work into protecting your skin from the sun and the other hazards it faces? Or if you learned how to achieve true relaxation without a couple glasses of Chardonnay?

You know exactly what would happen. Your skin would be healthiest it’s ever been, you’d have fewer headaches and colds, your energy level would be back to what it was when you were nine, your weight would stabilize, and you’d enjoy the most relaxing nights of sleep ever. Know what else? You’d smile more, because you simply felt better.

It’s not a fantasy or a quickie diet from a supermarket magazine. All it involves is making a conscious effort to love your new BFF, your body. When you take loving care of it, it’s going to take even better care of you. Think that’s an impossible task, or just not sure how to begin? Why not sit down and talk with me? I’ll be happy to listen to your thoughts about your body and help you begin a practical, step-by-step program to treat it the way your best friend deserves.

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