When I first started on social media, I didn't have a public account. I found myself trying to emulate the diets of the people I was following because of how they looked. I was putting pressure on myself to achieve this perfect body type, which – knowing what I know now about how many images are edited – isn’t even real.
I had this goal weight in my head, and I thought that when I got there I would find happiness – that when I stood on the scale, I would suddenly feel fulfilled. But when I hit that number, I still wasn’t happy. I just thought I could lose more. I needed to reset that part of my mind and realise that my weight and my happiness weren’t related – and that it was controlling me.
Once I acknowledged that, I could start exercising and eating well because of how it made me feel. I realised that I loved healthy food, and I could embrace new, creative ways of cooking that tasted great and made me feel great, too. It wasn’t that I was forcing myself to eat steamed fish with vegetables as some sort of punishment. These days, I exercise, sleep well, and give myself time off – and it’s motivated by self-respect, not self-image.