We’ve all had moments of doing a double take when we see our own appearance, whether it’s getting tagged in a not-so-flattering Instagram photo or standing under harsh lighting in a dressing room.
Yep, judging your body is something that happens to everyone. And while sometimes all you need is a moment of perspective (or a grounding yoga class) to refocus on feelings of self love, how do you know when it’s actually time to make a change?
For Yussy Swaine, that moment came when her four-year-old son picked up a photo of her on her wedding day and asked, “Mama, who’s the girl in the white dress?”
That innocently posed question broke Swaine’s heart, but she realized that if she had put on so much weight that her son didn’t recognize her, she needed to commit. “I looked at myself in the mirror and said, ‘This is not the same person in that picture. I need to find the person that I used to be, and not just be a shadow anymore,'” Swaine says now.
“I looked at myself in the mirror and said, ‘I need to find the person that I used to be, and not just be a shadow anymore.'”
That moment led her to where is now: An outspoken source of inspiration on Instagram (with over 11,000 followers) who shares her story of transformation as a Weight Watchers member in a totally honest and modern way. Think less old-school views around dieting, and more radically open real-talk.
“Seeing my own success on Weight Watchers helped me be more open because I would like to help someone out there, even one person, remove that cloud on top of them and just shine,” Swaine says.
After trying various iterations of Weight Watchers in the past, the difference for Swaine was starting the new WW Freestyle program. Here’s how it works: The program operates on a point system, which allows you to keep track of your meals in a simple way. But with over 200 zero Points® foods (like chicken, eggs, fish, and loads of fruits and veggies), WW Freestyle offers a ton of room to experiment, and, well, live.
“It makes you want to make healthier decisions at meal time, but it also gives you room for socializing, date nights, happy hours with friends,” Swaine says. Forty-four pounds later, Swaine says she has crazy amounts of energy and initiates backyard games with her kids on the reg.
“we all have one common goal, and it’s just to be the best version of ourselves.”
Once Swaine realized how much she could contribute, she felt empowered. “I have friends who tell me on a daily basis that they get inspired by my posts,” Swaine says. “Getting that feedback makes me want to post, not only for me, but with the hope that maybe I can be that little light in somebody else’s day.”
For Swaine, it’s all about creating space for the full-spectrum. “It’s so humbling to put your feelings raw for the Instagram world to see,” Swaine says. “So if you’re doing fantastic, share it and let somebody be inspired. When you’re not doing great, just soak in that amazing energy. Because we all have one common goal, and it’s just to be the best version of ourselves.”
Top Photo: Stocksy/Marti Sans