EU 225: Overcoming Body Image Struggles: How to Prioritize Self-Care and Embrace Your Summer Body10 min read

June 12, 2024

Struggling with your relationship with food? Here are some tips.

how to set boundaries with parents & in-laws
how to stop fighting with your husband
How to Deal with an Emotionally Unavailable Husband
Now Trending:
I'm veronica!

I am a licensed marriage and family therapist, marriage coach, course creator, retreat host, mother of 3, married for 23 years and host of the Empowered and Unapologetic podcast. 


Reconnect with Your Partner

tell me more

On-demand two hour workshop and workbook to bring your stale relationship back to life!

Listen on Apple. Listen on Spotify. Listen on YouTube.

When was the last time you looked in the mirror after a shower and said, “Hey sexy mama”? For most of us, probably never, or maybe years ago. Do you remember thinking you were overweight in high school? Now you look back and think, “How is a size two overweight?” It’s a feeling many of us share, especially now that summer is here. We feel pressured to look a certain way, compare ourselves to others, and often feel inadequate. This insecurity comes from societal expectations, media portrayals, and internalized beliefs about beauty and worth.

In this episode, I talk about body image and the pressure to have the perfect summer body. I share my own struggles with food and learning how to eat, and emphasize the importance of prioritizing self-care and fitness.

I encourage my listeners to:

  • Change Mindset: Focus on health and well-being rather than appearance. Set realistic goals and celebrate small victories.
  • Create a Routine: Establish a consistent workout and meal plan that fits your lifestyle. Start with manageable steps and gradually increase intensity.
  • Find Enjoyable Activities: Choose physical activities that you enjoy to make exercise fun.
  • Seek Support: Surround yourself with supportive friends or join groups with similar fitness goals. Having a support system can boost motivation and accountability.
  • Consider Professional Help: Therapy can provide valuable insights and strategies to overcome challenges related to body image and self-care.

By starting small, staying consistent, and being kind to oneself, you can improve your mental and physical health and lead a more fulfilling life.


  • Body image issues are a significant concern for many women, especially during the summer, due to societal expectations and comparisons to others.
  • Learning how to eat and developing a healthy relationship with food is crucial for overall well-being.
  • Prioritizing self-care and fitness can be challenging, but setting realistic goals and celebrating small victories can help maintain motivation.
  • Surrounding oneself with supportive friends or joining groups with similar fitness goals can boost accountability and motivation.
  • Considering therapy can provide valuable insight and strategies to overcome underlying issues that may hinder self-care efforts.
  • Starting small, staying consistent, and being kind to oneself throughout the process are key to improving mental and physical health and leading a fulfilling life.

Personal Journey with Food and Weight

So, let’s get real. I have struggled with food, weight, and more importantly, my relationship with food. For me, green enchiladas are my go-to comfort food, and I’ve had a hard time learning how to eat healthily. It might sound strange, but I’ve often punished myself with food. Like, if I ate a donut, I’d think, “Screw it, I’ll just eat ice cream too.” This was especially true at parties or barbecues where I’d overeat because I didn’t know when I’d get to eat that delicious food again.

I was actually in session with one of my clients where I’m over here challenging her and helping her identify where this unhealthy relationship [with food] happened with her. And it was through that, that I realized, wait a minute, my unhealthy relationship happened with the lack thereof. We didn’t have all the snacks in our house. We didn’t have all the food in the house. There were times where we had to go over to my grandma’s house to eat. And so whenever we went out, especially like birthday parties or anything, you bet your ass I was all over it. I just learned to, I don’t know, what do bears do when they like hibernate? They like store, right? (Veronica Cisneros)

So, at parties or buffets, I’d eat as much as I could because I didn’t know when I’d get that food again. It’s like what bears do when they hibernate—they store up. I’d pile my plate high and go back for seconds and thirds, especially at places like King’s Table, a buffet we used to go to.

I’d start with a salad, then move on to prime rib, fried chicken, macaroni, mashed potatoes—you name it. And even when I was full, I’d still go for dessert. I wanted more of that feeling you get when you bite into something amazing. Looking back, it was almost like an addiction. I tried many diets and hired trainers, but I struggled with consistency. It wasn’t until a year ago that I found something life-changing. It helped me recognize when I was content and stop eating, which was new for me. I wasn’t here to promote diet fads or medications but to share how I finally learned to eat without overindulging.

Breaking the Cycle

I realized I had an unhealthy relationship with food and that many of you might feel the same way. Sometimes, it felt like I needed someone to teach me how to eat properly. Over time, I learned about proteins, fats, and carbs, but it was more than just knowledge. It was about my brain finally connecting with my stomach. After eating enough, I could stop without feeling stuffed. I’d never experienced that before. It was like a revelation, and I stopped punishing myself for eating.

Do any of you guys have that problem where you like eat something and then you’re like punishing yourself after and then you are immediately going on the scale the next day and trying to figure out how you’re going to get your life together? That is exactly where I was. Everything would be a punishment. And everything would be a punishment because I was never taught how to eat. (Veronica Cisneros)

The Struggle with Self-Care and Fitness

Many of us struggle to prioritize self-care and fitness. We can make time for meetings and clients but not for working out or eating healthy. This struggle often stems from deeper issues like low self-worth, lack of motivation, or feeling overwhelmed. For me, it hit hard because I’d always find something more important to do than working out. One of my coaches told me, “Veronica, I don’t care if you work out for 15 minutes, just put it in your calendar.” So, I did. Initially, it felt ridiculous. I’d think, “Really, Veronica? Just 15 minutes?” But I started doing it more and began to appreciate the small victories.

When I work out, I’m my own best friend, coaching myself through each rep. “You got this, Veronica. I know it’s hard, but you’re here, and I’m proud of you.” It’s a time when I’m kindest to myself. I learned to recognize my limits, challenge myself without pushing too hard, and celebrate my efforts.

Mindset Shift

We often care too much about what others think, seeking validation and acceptance. This need for external approval can distract us from what truly matters—our health and happiness. If we want to achieve our goals, we need to focus on what we want, not what others expect from us.

I’m paying attention to what my body needed, not what is needed or expected of me. I’m paying attention to what I decide my body needs and what I am willing to go ahead and adhere to. We often care deeply about what others think because we seek validation and acceptance. Fear of judgment can be powerful motivator, pushing us to conform to perceive standards of beauty and success. This need for external approval can detract from our ability to focus on what truly matters, our health and happiness. (Veronica Cisneros)

Now, grab a pen and paper. Let’s make a mindset shift. Focus on health and wellbeing rather than appearance. Set realistic goals and celebrate small victories. What did you do today that you’re proud of? Maybe you organized your calendar or scored a new client. Celebrate those achievements, no matter how small.

Support Systems and Professional Help

Next, create a routine. Put a 15-minute workout in your calendar. Start small and gradually build up. Choose an activity you enjoy, whether it’s a walk or a simple workout app. It has to be something realistic and manageable.

Find enjoyable activities. Make exercise fun. Focus on a part of your body you want to work on first. I use the BodySpace app to plan my workouts. Spend 15 minutes finding a workout plan that excites you.

Seek support. Surround yourself with supportive friends or join groups with similar fitness goals. If you don’t have anyone, send it to me. I’ll celebrate your achievements with you.

Consider professional help if needed. Therapy can provide valuable insights and strategies to overcome challenges. Think about why you struggle with self-care and fitness. What are you avoiding, and why?

Self-Reflection and Taking Action

Remember, you’re not alone in this journey. It’s okay to celebrate small victories and to ask for help when needed. Prioritize yourself, embrace your body, and focus on your health and happiness. You’ve got this!

Useful links:

Meet Veronica Cisneros

As a leading authority in women’s empowerment and a fierce advocate for building strong networks, Veronica is your go-to guru for turning fears into victories, struggles into strengths, and doubts into boundless opportunities.
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist for 10 plus years; empowering high-achieving women in business to conquer both professional heights and personal fulfillment. She doesn’t do bandaids!
Veronica has a unique approach to overcoming obstacles and smashing through the glass ceilings that loom over ambitious women. With her arsenal of practical tools, actionable strategies, and unwavering support, Veronica doesn’t just help women succeed in their careers – she helps them thrive in every facet of their lives.

But Veronica’s expertise isn’t just theoretical – it’s personal. With over 24 years of marriage, three daughters, and a soaring career, Veronica embodies the resilience and determination needed to navigate life’s challenges. As a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Group Private Practice Owner, of Outside The Norm Counseling, Marriage Coach, and the voice behind the Empowered and Unapologetic podcast, Veronica effortlessly guides women to challenge themselves beyond their comfort zones.

Veronica is more than an expert – she’s a partner in transformation, turning mundane relationships into true connections. With her relatable charm and infectious humor, Veronica illuminates the path for women who refuse to settle for anything less than success in both business and relationships. Through practical tips, heartfelt anecdotes, and her trademark wit, Veronica empowers every woman to cultivate unbreakable bonds without sacrificing their ambitions.

Whether you listen to the podcast, join the free Facebook community, or do the Workshop,  you’re in the right place. Let’s do this together!

Thanks for listening!

Did you enjoy this podcast? Feel free to share this podcast on social media! You can also leave a review of the Empowered and Unapologetic Podcast on Apple Podcast {previously iTunes) and subscribe!

+ show Comments

- Hide Comments

add a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

I’m Veronica, your new Boss MOM Mentor with no filter and no BS. 

I'm a licensed marriage and family therapist, women’s coach, course creator, and retreat host. Married for OVER 20 years, raising three girls, and the host of the Empowered and Unapologetic podcast. 

Enough about me… 

My jam? Helping high-achieving women thrive both at home and in the hustle of work.

I've been there.

How To Deal with a Negative Husband

get it now


How To Work Through Resentment

read it

free download

 Top Resources

How To Stop Fighting with Your Husband

get it now


Setting Boundaries with Parents and In-laws

read it

free download

5 Things That Are Killing Your Marriage

In this guide, I'll share the simple strategies that help my clients go from feeling like roommates to reigniting their relationship and falling in love again.   


Free guide

5 Things Killing Your Marriage

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Marriage Coach, Course Creator, Retreat Host, Mother of 3, Married for over 20 years.

veronica cisneros

© veronica cisneros 2022




instagram >

follow along 
on Instagram: