People don’t like it when you change!

When you begin your journey of self-discovery and positive transformation, which is what intuitive eating and body positivity is, it often begins with welcoming change into your life for yourself. Knowing that you don’t want what you’ve always settled for any longer, and deciding to change it to something better for yourself.

Those changes will be about gently embracing the unknown, stepping outside that familiar comfort zone of dieting and trying to lose weight that you’ve always lived in. 

It may be one big moment that triggers this change for you, or lots of little “enough is enough!” moments, but the ladies I work with find that recognising this moment as an opportunity rather than a hurdle changes everything for them. 

And that moment, when you decide you want better, has a particular feeling to it I think. A real shift. Your mindset changes and becomes geared towards positivity and openness for what is to come. There’s a real power there. 

This isn’t just about changing habits; it’s about reshaping your relationship with your body and how you nourish it, how you take care of it, how you respect it. It’s about having self-compassion and understanding for yourself. 

So what happens when you come up against someone that doesn’t like the change that they are seeing in you? Because on the whole, people don’t like change, do they?

By the way, if you would like to listen to this one as a podcast episode you can do that here…..

Pushback and resistance from others

When you change from dieting and being all consumed by food, to living your very best body confidence and intuitive eating self, it’s common to encounter resistance from people around you. It’s almost as though developing your self confidence and choosing to be happy in our own skin is a threat to other people. 

This resistance might show up in different forms. 

Perhaps friends start questioning your clothes choices as you start stepping into more colourful clothes and away from the ‘slimming’ black. They might be keen to tell you how good their slimming club is (since you’ve left them there!) and how much weight they are still losing.

Maybe your family starts making unnecessary comments about your eating habits, like how much food you have on your plate, or how much you’re eating. Or maybe they ramp up the conversation about their diets, in the hope you’ll take the hint. And why oh why do people closest to you think it’s ok to make comments about your weight gain?

Colleagues too – they’re quick to pass judgement on your lunch choices now. “No salad today??”. 

Quite often these comments can be directed at themselves, but they’re really directed at you! “Oh I couldn’t possibly have a doughnut. I’d have to go to the gym then and I don’t have time”…. or something similar.

It can feel tough, like you’re swimming against the tide. This pushback isn’t really about you – it’s more about them and their own insecurities or beliefs around food and bodies. They are still deep in the societal beliefs they’ve internalised about what bodies, dieting, and health should look like. 

It’s as if by choosing a path of self-acceptance and rejecting diet culture, you hold up a mirror that reflects back to them their unexamined biases or unresolved struggles. So, this resistance isn’t really about you; it’s about them confronting uncomfortable truths within themselves. 

Remember, our society has long equated thinness with worthiness, health with moral superiority. So when you step away from these norms in favour of listening to our own bodies, it can challenge others’ views and prompt defensive reactions. 

But here’s the thing: every time you stand firm in your commitment to yourself and gently challenge these biases, you’re not only advocating for your well-being but also planting seeds of change in how others perceive body positivity and intuitive eating. 

Celebrating despite their challenges

It’s easy to overlook your progress, especially when you’re faced with challenges like the comments that your nearest and dearest make.

It can really put a dampener on how you feel so it’s important to remember the direction in which you’re moving and the wins you’ve had for yourself. 

Whether you’ve managed to listen to your hunger cues today or found a moment of joy in movement without fixating on changing your body – these are milestones that deserve a cheer. 

Yes, it would be great if people would cheer you on too, but given that people don’t like change you might have to not worry about them for a while and give yourself that focus. You’re not here for their validation. You’re here for your own wellbeing and body positivity.

These challenges from others may feel like obstacles but are actually opportunities in disguise – that’s how you need to view them. You dig deeper into your resilience. You discover strength you never knew you had! Celebrate yourself for showing up every day and choosing actions that align with kindness towards your body and mind. You’re refusing diets that don’t serve you, pushing back against unrealistic beauty standards, and creating space for more self-love and acceptance in your life.

A sweet little heart cheesecake on a red plate, next to a coffee in a red cup

Handling negative feedback gracefully

There are many ways to deal with negativity from others. It depends on a lot of factors. What is appropriate for the time and place that you are in? Who are you dealing with – a close friend, an elderly relative, a person in a position of importance where you work? 

None of these people have the right to comment, but you may need to adjust the conversation to suit!

I’ve found that one very powerful strategy that works with all of those people is to approach feedback with curiosity rather than defensiveness. Opening up a conversation with them about why they made that comment can lead to some very interesting results. 

Asking questions to fully understand the perspective being offered can help you to confidently explain your position, why their comment was inappropriate, and then maybe in future they may not be so quick to judge. This stance not only softens the blow for yourself but can uncover valuable insights and opportunities for helping them to understand where they have done wrong. 

As a side note here, you are never obligated to educate someone on this topic, but I am a firm believer that we should advocate for ourselves and spread the word around body confidence and intuitive eating. It is not your job to teach others, but who do they learn from then? 

Maya Angelou said “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better”. Maybe those people don’t know that they’re wrong? So how will they ever be able to do better if there’s no-one showing them how? Can you be that voice?

Another tactic involves taking a moment to frame that feedback for yourself within your journey of self-improvement and body confidence. Remember, each piece of criticism is not a verdict on your worth. 

So when a friend tells you that they are “worried for your health” because of your food choices or your weight now, when you reframe it it sounds more like “I have been told that this is unhealthy and I’m concerned for you as my friend”, or even “I wish I could be so confident in myself that I didn’t care about my diet”. 

Unless they are being outright cruel and intentionally nasty I’m willing to bet that their comments are either out of genuine concern for you, or because they are unhappy in themselves.

Take what serves you from the comments and leave what doesn’t. Learning to sift through them with grace allows you to find those golden nuggets of truth that propel you forward, without letting unhelpful noise derail your progress or shake your peace.

Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better

Setting boundaries with compassion

Setting boundaries with compassion begins with understanding that saying no to situations or behaviours that don’t serve you is actually a profound act of self-love. 

Think of it as caring for your garden; you wouldn’t let just anything grow wild and untamed to the detriment of your beautiful flowers, would you? In the same way, pruning back the demands or expectations of others creates space for your own happiness to grow. 

Firmly communicating your needs. Ask people to respect your limits. Let them know what is and isn’t acceptable to you. A conversation about your new approach may be welcome, but judgements and rude comments are not.

You can do this with kindness, it doesn’t need to be confrontational.

Losing friends as you make positive changes in your life

It’s a common phenomenon: as you grow, evolve, and make positive changes in your life, some friendships may naturally drift apart. It’s just that this feels different because it’s driven by a subject so very personal. It can be hard to deal with. 

However, look back through your life so far. Are there people not there now that once upon a time were? 

I have numerous school friends that at a point in time were my best friends, but now we don’t socialise at all. It’s not that we fell out. There was no big drama. It’s just life changed and we drifted in different directions.

As you prioritise your well-being and happiness through intuitive eating and body confidence, some friends may struggle to understand or support these changes. They might think you’ve changed, and you have, but this is a change for the better. You’re simply letting the real you out, and not hiding her any more. They just don’t get it – but it doesn’t diminish your worth or progress.


This can be a challenging time, and upsetting if it feels like people closest to you are slipping away, but you have to prioritise yourself. What’s the alternative in this situation – going back to dieting or shrinking your personality to please them? 

I truly believe that people are here for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. 

Some people come into your life to show you something. Some will be there for a period of time and then will drift away. And some will be steadfast and always around no matter what.

I also think that it opens doors for new connections too – ones that align with your values and goals. Embrace this period of transition as an opportunity to surround yourself with individuals who uplift and inspire you on your journey towards self-acceptance and self-love.

Support systems for your journey

Embracing body confidence and intuitive eating is not an easy road for most people, and surrounding yourself with a supportive community is like having a soft cushion around you, catching you when you stumble. 

It’s absolutely vital to find spaces and people who uplift your spirit, understand your struggles, and cheer on your victories, no matter how small they seem. These communities become the echo of positivity we all need; they remind us that we’re not alone in our experiences.

Creating or joining groups where your feelings and experiences are validated can profoundly impact your progress. Imagine sharing your story and hearing a chorus of me too or receiving tips that feel tailor-made for you. 

Connection fosters healing; by being part of such an empathetic group, not only do you draw strength from others, but you also give back by being there for someone else on their path to body positivity and peace with food.

The Eat From Within membership group can do just that for you. There are different levels of membership available, and each one comes with a lovely group of women at live sessions each month, plus a WhatsApp community to support you in between sessions. Just click here to take a look.

Please note, this post is intended to be general information only. Every care has been taken to ensure that facts and figures are correct at the time of posting. As always, please seek the support of a registered professional before making changes to your diet or lifestyle⁠, or if you feel that you are affected by any of the topics discussed. 

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Ready to let go of your food and body worries?

Schedule a free 30 minute call with me and let’s make things happen!

Let’s talk about what’s bothering you, give you some tips so that you can get started right away, and have a little chat about what I can do to help you move forward.

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