Body Love & Relationships with Dr. Chavonne Perotte | Ep.11

Your Body is with you from day one until the end, learn how to build your relationship with her and love her wholeheartedly. In this episode, Chanci and life and marriage coach, Dr. Chavonne Perotte, discuss

  • How to not buy into society’s lies about what your body “should” look like.
  • Why loving the body you have is essential to your health goals.
  • How to “love your belly”.
  • Why loving your body is a choice.
  • How to navigate painful thoughts about your body.
  • How learning to love all of you is a superpower!
  • Why it’s not your partner’s job to make you feel attractive.
  • Pouring into an empty cup with a hole will never make you feel whole.
  • How to create empowering thoughts on purpose
  • You can’t divorce your body so let’s learn how to love her! 

About the Guest:

Dr. Chavonne Perotte is a life and marriage coach who helps couples develop the mindset to create happy marriages. She believes the quickest path to improving a marriage starts with assessing the ways we as individuals can think differently, grow, and evolve as a way of strengthening our relationships, rather than needing our spouses to change. 

Her clients not only learn how to DO things differently, but how to BE different in their marriages by redefining expectations, positioning themselves to receive what they want and creating contentment in the here and now.

Dr. Chavonne is trained as social science researcher. She received her doctorate from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and focused her research on communication and intimate partnerships. She is the author of Voices in Your Ear: New Conversations to Transform Your Mind and Renew Your Marriage and is the Founder of RelateAble, LLC. a coaching practice that provides virtual and in-person coaching to couples seeking a combination of Christian-faith guidance and transformational coaching tools

Instagram: www.instagram.com/chavonneperotte

Podcast:https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/love-marriage-again-with-dr-chavonne/id1447007940

Website: https://drchavonne.com/

About the Host:

Chanci Dawn is a non-diet certified nutritionist, mindset and embodiment coach whose soul’s purpose is to help women create the most wildly free and loving relationship with food and their bodies. After over 30 years of dieting and recovering from her own eating disorder Chanci is determined to help women find the same freedom she has through embodied eating and pleasurable living. Chanci believes that when you fall madly in love with yourself you’ll have the power to change your world and from there you can change the world around you making embodied eating a deep and powerful form of activism! 

Find Chanci on the following platforms:

Website: http://www.chancidawn.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theembodiednutritionist/

Facebook: https://facebook.com/chancidawn

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Transcript
Chanci Dawn:

This show is about freedom. Freedom from your constant struggle with food and letting the size of your thighs determine your worth. Join me weekly for no whole fat, unfiltered girlfriend kind of conversations that will inspire, teach and empower you. As we tune into our own body's wisdom and tune out of the diet industry lives, we can live our most radiant, pleasurable and fulfilled lives. My name is Chanci Dawn. I'm a non diet nutritionist embodiment and mindset coach. But most importantly, I'm a woman on a mission to grow a deeply connected and conscious relationship with food and my body. And I'm here inviting you to do the same. Let's go.

Chanci Dawn:

Hello, dear listener, and welcome to today's show. I am so happy you're here because I have an amazing guest for you. So you know how we often talk about how our relationship with our bodies very similar to a marriage, right? Like we are. We're in this body. We have this relationship with her, and we can't divorce her. So we might as well learn to love her and learn how to flourish together. So Dr. Chavonne Perotte, she's actually a marriage coach. But what she has brought to this conversation as far as the relationship and self image with our bodies is absolutely it's gonna blow your mind. I just love it. So I'm gonna read her bio, and then we will dive right in. So Dr. Chavonne Perotte is a life and marriage coach who helps couples develop the mindset and skills to create happy marriages. She received her doctorate from the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and focused her research on communication and intimate partnerships. She is the author of voices in your ear new conversations to transform your mind and renew your marriage and is the founder of Relatable LLC, a coaching practice that provides virtual coaching to couples seeking a combination of Christian faith guidance and transformational coaching tools. Yay. Welcome to Chavonne let's dive right in.

Chanci Dawn:come and I love it. I'm like,:Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Yeah, here we are. The feeling is mutual. I remember meeting you too. And I remember sitting at dinner and just being like, I love her energy. So fun. So um, how old are you? Yay.

Chanci Dawn:

So I when I started the podcast, like I was sharing it with you before we hopped on now. I knew I wanted you on 100% Because I love what you do. I love your your passion for marriage and for helping women really just thrive, right? So I knew I wanted you on and then you made a post and I'm like, bingo, this is what we need to talk about. And as my listeners know, this is not like big planned, it'll flow we're having a girlfriend conversation. So I'm excited to see where this all goes. But to start I'm gonna read out the post you made on May 29. So it is let's talk about body image. So obviously that caught me like okay, let's do that. So Chavonne wrote, I have an apple shaped body which means I carry my weight in my belly always have and after two babies by C section I pretty much look like I'm have like I'm a few months pregnant all of the time. I've intentionally decided to love my body. Because not too would be an an assault on myself. Oh, I just got like goosebumps. What about you? When it comes to being happier in your marriage, the way you see yourself matters. If you are constantly picking yourself apart, you do the same to your spouse, whether their physical flaws, their annoying habits or frustrating personality characteristics, your brain is hyper focused on the wrong. What's bad, what's unattractive or unacceptable? This way of thinking is leaking happiness. Oh, yeah, for sure. Oh, so many goosebumps moments. In reading this, you can't be happy within when you are so unhappy with how you look on the outside. You can be happy in your marriage when you keep a constant tabs on what your spouse is doing. I think you met Kent, that was a typo. Probably. Yeah. I'm thinking so. And then you went on to talking about your happy again masterclass, and you say, I'll show you the key ingredient to breaking the cycle of thinking. So you can access the happiness and fulfillment just waiting for you to notice. You'll walk away knowing how to catch yourself in the negative thoughts spirals, you know, you'll know what to focus your attention on. Instead, you'll have the insight and know how to put yourself in a more positive appreciative space. And any moment you choose, this will change everything for you how you see yourself how you see your spouse, how you experience your marriage. Oh, my gosh, can we just talk about all of this? And like, go into the depth of

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

it? It's so good, right? Yeah, it's which is why I'm not surprised. There were typos. Because I have these moments where just like, you know this, right things just like, flow out of you. And you're just in your zone. And the message is just like pouring out of you. So they have those moments where I write a post like that. And then look back at it later. I'm like, Wow, there's so many typos. This must have been way in the zone. Yeah. I'm really sharing. You're worried that yeah, like, wow. Yeah, that is so true.

Chanci Dawn:

So true. So Vaughn, can you share your own personal body image journey with Sarah. So

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

it starts with exactly what I said in that post, I have an apple shape. And I have since I can remember really noticing it, probably around like six or seven. And just feeling like, Well, my belly is so big. And I think at that age, I just let it be wasn't really a big thing at all. But it was probably when I was in high school that it was just like not okay. And I can remember going on diets of it's so funny now eating like only plain bagels. So many adolescent brain thought that like just eating plain bagels for sure, is good for losing weight, right? And

Chanci Dawn:

you're like, they're so boring. How could they? How could it

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

be bad for you? Right? This is before Google and before, you know, nutritional labels. And I remember my dad had bought a Nordic track. And I would like get on that Nordic track all the time, trying to lose weight and be thin and I would do endless amount of sit ups. And that sort of carried into college and continued of just like feeling insecure about my belly and like, not ever wanting to wear to peace and just doing all the things to diet and over exercise and changed the shape of my body. Really, that's what I was trying to do. And then I made peace with it very at a surface level when I got pregnant. Right. So, you know, fast forward. We had our first child, I think it was probably 36. And I was like, well, now my big belly is acceptable. Right now I can let it out. I can love it because it's carrying this child that we worked really hard to create. And you know how to see section. The belly now is doing more. Right.

Chanci Dawn:

Right? Doing what's involved in more for sure.

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

More and now it's like healing. And, you know, I don't even know if I have an official like, I think it's called diverticulitis. Like I'm not a medical professional, but it was poking out even more than we had our second child again, like now I love the belly. And he's now born and then now I'm just with this belly, right that just keeps doing more being more and I made a commitment to myself by that point. I discovered coaching and being in the coaching community, you know, you meet a lot of people that coach on a lot of different things and I remember hearing the message I don't even remember who it was from exactly. But it was just this idea of like, before you try to lose weight, quote unquote, or be healthier, whatever it is you're trying to achieve and your health goals, love the body that you have. And I know that, you know, now Chauncey, this is so much your message, right of doing that, and I had gotten to that place. And then I remember, you really started promoting that so much more. And it was just such a great reinforcement. And I went on this journey of loving the belly, right where it was, I would stand in the mirror after taking a shower. And I would just pour on gratitude for this body. For this belly that is so comfortable. It's like so comfortable. And it's a daily choice, right? It's not one of those things that's like one and done. And in the whole body image movement, I started learning a little bit more about it. And I changed my news feed on, you know, Instagram and social media and things to really show women who were shaped like me, so that I could see the beauty reflected back to me and the things that I was consuming. And so it really was just an intentional decision and journey to love the shape of my body, there is no right body shape to have. And once I really decided that, I wanted to believe that I got to work proving that true to myself. Okay,

Chanci Dawn:

so good. One of the things that really stands out to me in that story is buying in how we as women buy in to society's lies about what our bodies should look like. Because all of a sudden, like, yeah, as you were sharing both pregnancies, you're like, Oh, now it's acceptable. Right now I have a baby belly. And now all of a sudden, this part of me that I really struggled with, now, all of a sudden, it's like, Ooh, look at me, I'm having a baby. I'm getting all this beautiful attention. Right? And then the scrip switches, you have the baby. And then there's that craziness of like, you know, getting your body back, I even hate that phrase, you are you still have your body, there's no getting it back, it has been gone. Right? So stuff like that. And the baby belly, you know, we talk people talk about like, having the baby belly after you've had your baby. So then the script switches and society all of a sudden was like, That's not okay, you're not pregnant. So now you have to be a certain size and a certain look in order to be acceptable. So when you talk about your thoughts, right, and how they influence as we know, your emotions and your actions. It really is quite interesting to me when we dissect this and look at it as whose thoughts are we actually buying here? whose thoughts are we believing? And how can we then choose to believe truth, right? Our truth about our body, and our beauty and our enoughness? Right? And it truly is like becoming aware of these lies, and then navigating new. So I love your story. And I love how, how you've chosen this, like you said, it is a choice every single day, it is a choice. So Oh, tell me more about that transition of looking in the mirror. And choosing to love your belly. I teach quite often like going from I can't handle you, I can't send this to love you is really far. Right. So what we love to do is just start with like the step forward to I appreciate my body or I respect my body. So can you share a little bit more about that process with our listeners? Yeah,

Dr. Chavonne Perotte::Chanci Dawn:

That is powerful statement. I'm not here to do that to myself anymore. Like owning that. And one of the things I love to do when my brain start saying things about my body is to, to that awareness stop. And then to go back and go, Oh, I'm sorry, body, I'm not talking about like, you would like this anymore, right? And that step of going, Oh, sweetheart, I'm sorry. And seeing your body as this vessel, who you get your soul gets to have this beautiful human experience in right and building that relationship with her and saying I'm sorry, and recognizing that and like you said, I am not here to do this any longer. Yeah, powerful. Okay. I'm noticing my cold voice for all the listeners, I'm having a hard time talking even, like, this cold voice. So yes, but that's okay. And you know, another thing that I loved, you were talking about is learning to love all of you. And right now, my own personal journey is learning to love my my cycle, right. And like that week before I bleed, where I feel rage, where I feel a lot of anger, when I'm, you know, deeply affected by things that are going on in our world. And everything is so surface where I used to think, Oh, I'm so crazy and emotional. And this time is so hard now. It feels like a superpower. And I think that's the same that we can bring into body love and body image when we embrace all of who we are. It turns into a superpower. For sure. So can you tell me please share how your own experience with learning to respect and love your body has impacted your marriage?

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Yeah, that's a really great question. So I think what it has done is it has released my husband from needing to feed my ego about how I look. Right? Now, don't get me wrong. I welcome compliments, but it's sort of like when you're insecure about your appearance are insecure about any part of you. But for this conversation, when you're insecure about your appearance, and you don't know how to create security and create confidence within yourself, you will grab it and reach for and need that confidence to come from others. Right. And so I remember right, especially after our second child, and I gained like 40 pounds, just feeling like my husband doesn't compliment me like Does he even find me attractive? I remember just like beginning to question that and prodding him and trying to like get him to like, give me compliments and things like that. And once I could see what was happening, it was like, this isn't his job to make me feel attractive. Right? It's not his job to make me feel desirable. And what I noticed I was doing was like, wanting his validation of my attractiveness. To help me believe it for myself, right? And so it's sort of like, no, that's not his role. And so once I could do that for myself, then it doesn't matter if he's noticing, complimenting, or not because I choose this for myself. And I think once I really started doing that, and recognizing just how much power I had, in terms of my own experience of my desirability, or my own experience of how attractive I was, I just took control of it. Right, I started giving myself permission to actually buy clothes that were the right size for me to stop waiting, right for that someday when I lose 10 pounds or 20 pounds, right? It's like, No, I'm gonna get clothes that I love that suit this body that I have right now that I feel confident in this body right now. And that has made such a huge difference, right? It's like, I don't need anything else. To feel like I'm looking my best for me. And that has just released an expectation that was just unnecessary. In my marriage, in anyone's marriage, I coach a lot of my clients on this as well, where it's like, you're wanting your spouse to validate you in this area. But do you believe it for yourself? And a lot of times, the answer is no.

Chanci Dawn:

Yes. And did you find when you were in that space of looking for that validation from him? Did it actually work? No. Right. Tell us more about that. What was your experience, it didn't work

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

for a couple of reasons. One, because it's like, when you need someone else to feed your beliefs about yourself, they can never do it enough, right? So even if you're like digging for the compliment, and you get it that one time, it doesn't last, right? Because it's gone into an empty cup, right with a hole in it. So there was that aspect of us like, well, it's not enough, like I need more of it. And there's also this concept I teach of just being able to have receptors to receive it. So when you don't believe something about yourself, and someone tells you it, if you don't have receptors to actually receive it, it literally just like washes off of you. So it's like, Yeah, you look great. Like, don't worry about that. But if you don't believe that yourself, it's literally like in one ear and out the other. So the work really is always building that from within creating your own confidence by the thoughts you consciously choose about yourself. And then you see how sometimes everything else just aligns with it, right. It's like you're in the energy of like, I look amazing, I love this body. I love my shape. I love all these things about myself. Other people will feed into that right? And it becomes like a nice little cherry on top of the sundae and not needing to be the whole scoop of ice cream.

Chanci Dawn:

Mm hmm. I really love the analogy of the the cup pouring into a cup with a hole in it. Right that's so yeah, and it's never going to be filled up. So these receptors you speak of? Would you say that this thought work that you intentionally do is how you grow these receptors. Can you speak to that a little bit more?

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Yeah, it is. It literally is. So different times different phases, different stages of how this might look but sometimes it's just writing a letter to myself to my body and sharing how much I appreciate it sometimes it's doing that mirror work of like literally being there with your body. I will like put my hands on my belly and just like love it like its own separate thing. And sometimes it is catching the negative thoughts when they come in right? And then deciding what am I intending and consciously thinking about instead? What do I choose to think in this moment? Like yes, this bot is here knocking on the door. But I'm not answering that door anymore. How do I open the door to what it is I want to be thinking

Chanci Dawn:

it's like what company are you allowing into your house? Right and yeah, and you're our brains This is our home our bodies our homes. So what beliefs what company what all of this are we actually opening the door putting down the welcome mat for right or is it like you're actually totally reminds me of me. I'm such an introvert and if someone knocks on my door I'm like, first of all who the heck does that without without notice without texting first because you They're not called me. Because that's just weird. And then I'll like peek off the, you know, the deck to see who it is before I answer and often I'll just call over the deck, right? And I'm like, No, thank you. Like, if it's bad or something like, no. It's, it's like that, you know, first of all these thoughts need to text. Hey, are you there? Right versus not some right there? No, I'm not, you're blocked. And then it's like, they come knocking at your door. And you're like, I already told you no, no. And I love that, that that is such a, it's such an something that you can take away and apply right away. Right, with that thought of this is my home. This is my sacred temple, because it is this is our sacred temple. Right. So yeah, so so good. Okay. Um, I, there's so many different questions coming through my mind right now. And I kind of don't know where to go from here. There's so many different places we can go. So do you find that let's talk about your clients for a sec? Like, do you find that many most of them come to you? And that body image is a big part of their struggles in their own marriage? Or not?

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

That's a really good question. It is. It's wrapped up in their overall perception of themselves, right. And I coach men and women and couples, so both have it just in different ways. So it really is this idea of like, there's some standard of being that I'm not, right. And so when I'm not that thing, I think I'm supposed to be, I'm hard on myself, and I'm unhappy with myself. And so then when I'm hard on myself and unhappy with myself, I'm hard on my spouse, and I'm unhappy with my spouse, because my brain is now just like, in that post, my brain is now oriented to what's not, right. Mm hmm. And so there's only so much you can observe what's not right, quote, unquote, before you start talking about what's not right, right. And then we get into these cycles of complaining and judging and criticizing each other. And so my clients, I don't even think that they're aware that that's what's happening. fortnight, yeah. Right. What they know is, I'm arguing with my spouse, or my spouse is withdrawing, or we're not connected, or we don't like being around each other. And then when you sort of open that up and look inside, well, you don't like being around each other, because you're criticizing each other. And you're complaining about each other, and you're pointing out each other's flaws and not looking at what's working. And so then when you open that up, it's like, well, how do you talk to yourself? Right? You know, we've heard the research about children, like their own narrative in their head is really what's being fed to them by their parents, as they grow up, that becomes our internal self talk. And in marriage, I say it works. The reverse, right? Like your internal self talk is what you're then giving out to your spouse. And so it's not until we like lift those layers and look at like, Okay, well, why is your communication and connection breaking down? Well, how are you interacting with each other? Well, that's really not a very loving interact. And that's not an appreciative interaction. So of course, there's going to be some distance created from that. And why is that happening? Well, let's look at how you're seeing yourself. And so when I approach helping a couple, you know, reconnect, it's really looking at three sources of thoughts, one, how do you see yourself? How do you see your spouse? And how do you see? How do you think they see you? Right, because that's also at play. Because a lot of times people have misperceptions about what their spouse thinks of them. And so what my clients are aware of is like, I don't think my partner desires me, right. But we have to look at why you're thinking that a lot of times, it's because you don't find yourself desirable. Right, right, for these reasons. So that's sort of how it typically plays itself out.

Chanci Dawn:

Oh, that just makes so much sense. And quite often, when I'm talking to people about what I do, I'll say I'm like a marriage counselor for your relationship with your body. Yeah. And it is it there's so many parallels, even how when you said, I forget exactly the way you said it, but like, how do you think about yourself? And then how do you think your spouse thinks about you, right? That it's totally in parallel with the body relationship too, because I'll often say, like, what do you say to your body? And how do you interpret her as far as like who you are, you know, how she feels any sort of aches and pains how she Look at all of this. And you know her the cues that are so silent quite often because you've just shut your brain off off of them, and then wakening these up and then learning, you can trust your body, and she can trust you and playing this beautiful, or dancing this delicate dance together this beautiful waltz. Right? It's like, really, it totally lends itself so well to the marriage analogy. And except you can't ever divorce your body. And I think that's a big thing. Not that I've been divorced. And I'm like, that was really, really hard. And here I am in my body. And sometimes we don't really want to be with each other. But we are here. It is a vow. It's like a handshake we made before we came on this Earth, our body and our soul going, we're going to do this earth experience together. Until death. There's the bow, and you can't divorce your body. So let's learn how to love her.

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Now, it's a really, it's a really great perspective to arrive at. Mm hmm.

Chanci Dawn:

Love that was so we're coming up on time like that went by so far, so fast. Oh, my goodness, that was such a good conversation. Thank you so much. And can you please share what you're doing right now? Because your social media is lit up. And I love it. You are so beautiful, sexy, powerful on there. And the message of like, yes, like Blitz, just, I forget the words you're using. But there's so many sparkles. It's like let's make your marriage sparkly.

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Yeah, there's so yes, there's so many feelings and vibes that I'm putting out there. Yes. So I'm super excited. I'm launching a group program. We have a launch party July the 10th, which is where the sparkling and like all the excitement is coming from. And I'm gonna tell your listeners, like they're gonna get like an insider scoop into one of the elements of blue fun. Love Insider. Yeah. Because this is it's so apropos to what we're talking about, right? So, you know, as a marriage coach, most people think like, Okay, you just coach the couple, and they get better. But it's so much about you, which I think this whole conversation has really underscored that the fastest way to improve the experience you're having in your marriage is by improving the experience you have with yourself. And so one of the elements of the group coaching experience that I'm creating this we're gonna have self care soirees where we will be talking about these issues specifically, like how we see ourselves, the relationship we have to our bodies, the relationship we have to our emotions, the relationship we have to our way of thinking and the way our brain is sort of wired and oriented as a, it's just a practice of love and devotion for yourself. And so I am just in a massively creative space of thinking of all the things that I want to create and bring and offer the people that will be part of this experience. And for anyone listening, depending on when this comes out. July the 10th is when I will be sharing all of the details of the program and how you can roll and how it will help you really love yourself and love your marriage.

Chanci Dawn:

And when is the enrollment you know, I actually have another podcast that is due to come out next week, but I will totally do this one. Yeah, so

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

yes. Starts Yeah, July Okay, when enrollment opens officially. But I'm also doing like, if people have questions, and they're like, Hey, I just want to skip the line and secure my spot right away. I do have like a little quick call we could do for anyone who wants to jump ahead. Or July the 10th. Yeah.

Chanci Dawn:

Okay. That is so exciting. How do people find you? Yes, that's so there's

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

there's two places to find me if you like all of the fun things. What do we both entertained and powerfully educated? Definitely. Follow me on Instagram Chavonne Perotte, I love doing reels and all the fun things on Instagram. And you can also find me at my website, doctors javon.com. And we're on a podcast. I have a podcast. You can actually easiest thing in this moment right now is to click that little search bar on your podcast app. Search. Love marriage again with Dr. Chavonne. And there you will see me pop up hit Subscribe and have my voice in your ear as well.

Chanci Dawn:

Beautiful. And we will have all of those links in the show notes. Okay, so if any of that you just have to go straight to the show notes and click and find Chavonne And I highly, highly recommend that you do. Yay. Okay. Any last words of wisdom that you would love to share with the women listening right now?

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Absolutely. So I'm one of those people who likes to consume a lot of information. And I like to listen to podcasts, sometimes quite passively. So the best word of wisdom that I want to leave you with is spending one minute and finding your takeaway from this conversation. What really stuck out to you? What is the sentence or the message that you heard that you're going to start truly applying in your life? Put it on a post it note, put it in a note in your phone? And refer to it often?

Chanci Dawn:

Yeah, okay. So dear listener, that is your task. That's your homework. And I would love it, if you would drop message me and share your biggest takeaway. And I will share that with Cheban. And it might even bring up more, you know, conversational material that we can have in the future on this podcast. Because this talk matters, this stuff is so important. And it goes back to that saying, like how you do anything, is how you do everything. So if you're not loving on your body and learning how and doing this important work to grow this beautiful relationship with her. As you've heard here, it's going to affect everything, your relationships, your parenting, even like all of the above. So this work is the truest form of activism I have ever found. And thank you, Chavonne for coming on and sharing your beautiful wisdom and your own journey with us. I've really, really love this conversation. You're amazing.

Dr. Chavonne Perotte:

Thank you so much Chanci, for having me. I appreciate you and the work that you're doing. I

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