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BESSHAILE's Recent Blog Entries

Right Brain and Left Brain Make July Plans (well, LB does, anyway)

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

It's that time again - time to make my monthly resolutions. I'm pretty durn tired after the push of the past few weeks and the days at work in summertime are chaotic even when they're quiet. So I thought I'd let my two brains take charge of the July resolves. Let's listen in on them now.

emoticon So whadaya think about 2014 so far?

emoticon I don't think. I feel. You're always forgetting that.

emoticon I blame it on summertime. Even a pleasant summer like this tends to scramble the brain.

emoticonYeah. I know. And I'm exhausted after the mad dash to put those 2 budgets to bed. turned out okay, though, didn't they?

emoticon Yup. Ya did good. I did good too. Now let's just hope the county administrator signs off on all the changes we made.

emoticonYeah. He's still a dark horse. He makes me nervous. His voice is so soft I can barely hear him and he swallows the ends of his words. I always have to stop myself from becoming chirpy whenever I'm around him.

emoticon I've noticed. I also noticed that when you're uncomfortable you procrastinate. We could have had that budget squared away before the last board of supervisors meeting.

emoticonWell, you're in charge of the schedule, not me.

emoticon I know. I am thinking we need a better timeframe to work in.

emoticonOh la. It's summer. Can't we just kick back some?

emoticon Yes. in fact, we'll kick back plenty this month because we have to use some leave or lose it. I've scheduled 2.5 days off already and I'm sure we can squeeze another one out of the month somewhere. We're even going to duck out early today and go have coffee with DR across the river today!

emoticonReally? Great! I love sneaking off early.

emoticon But to get back to the timeframe, the schedule, and our July resolutions -

emoticonOh No. Please. I don't want time frames and schedules and to make myself Better. I already like us just the way we are.

emoticon Well - without vigilance, what we are going to become is anxious and fat. Do you like that?

emoticonNnn-no but what makes you think we're going to get anxious and fat?

emoticon (Gives RB TheLook) Our track record, that's what. Whenever we are just slap dashing around we eat too much, stay up too late, get fat, and then go all stressfully miserable worrying about everything under the sun. Do you WANT to wear a size 18 again?

emoticon(Hangs head) No. (sighs) So. How do you plan to ruin the summer this year?

emoticon I don't plan to. I have an idea. What do you think about this. What if we spend 15 minutes every morning picturing heaven. In fact, we can make a list of heavenly scenarios, like a week at the beach or a hike through the snow. We can cut them into strips and put them in the surprise jar. Then every day we can pull one out and ... just Go There. Like a meditation. A Happiness meditation.

emoticonOh my! and we could feel all the happiness that a week at the beach would give us? or a birthday party? or a shopping trip!

emoticon Yes. You get it - that's the idea. I think we've been so anxious and stressed and we're not done yet with the ThingsWhichMustBeDone. So we need the antidote to the slow poison of DOOTY.

emoticonI LOVE it! It's a FABULOUS idea!

emoticon (Grins and twinkles her eyes) I thought you would. And this can be our July resolution.

emoticonYippeeee!

emoticon You know this means we have to curtail our morning computer time.

emoticonYeah, yeah, I'm good with that.

emoticon Okay. Well, then. We have about half an hour before breakfast. Let's go make that list.

emoticonLOL - trust you to find a way to turn even something this fun into a list making opportunity.

emoticon Hey - we are who we are, right?

emoticonYup. And I think we're a pretty neat guy.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOOKLOVINGGIRL 7/8/2014 2:36PM

    Fun blog! It's so cute to capture the way your thoughts work.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STEPH-KNEE 7/2/2014 10:00PM

    I love these blogs and love your July resolutions!! emoticon

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ANGELBELIEVER 7/1/2014 11:22PM

    emoticon and emoticon Love your blogs. emoticon

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KOHINOOR2 7/1/2014 9:21PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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123ELAINE456 7/1/2014 7:47PM

  Always love your RB/LB conversations (Blogs). You Can Do It. Keep Pushing Forward. You are doing Great. God Blessings Always. Have a Wonderful Week. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!Take Care.

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BLPRETTYGIRL1 7/1/2014 7:34PM

    emoticon emoticon

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KANSASROSE67 7/1/2014 12:19PM

    I always love your RB/LB blogs!

I do the same thing with the budget...worry and procrastinate. But mine is done too and I have the blessing of the board and the city manager. Hopefully it will get past the city council without problems.

Things have not been fun at work lately. Just the usual...out-of-control kids, people leaving in the night with 30 DVDs, complaining patrons. There are so many good people and good things about my job but sometimes I just get tired of it all.

Sorry for the downer comments. I think I'm venting! I am excited for you to enjoy July and your time off. Keep up the great work.

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CAT-IN-CJ 7/1/2014 12:16PM

    That was fun, listening to your brainy conversation . . .
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MSLZZY 7/1/2014 10:04AM

    Indeed, you are pretty neat! Spark on!

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WORKNPROGRESS49 7/1/2014 9:10AM

    emoticon blog!!! emoticon emoticon

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JUSTYNA7 7/1/2014 8:40AM

    Pretty positive discussion... I wish my two sides were on speaking terms right now... but maybe we should go to remediation, lol. Good luck this month.

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KANOE10 7/1/2014 8:27AM

    That is a cute blog. It is a good idea to have a box with joyous moments in your life. It will make you remember the happiness in your life! Way to go, girls. I am glad your stressful budget is done!

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BETHGILLIGAN 7/1/2014 7:42AM

    Great blog!! A good reminder, too!

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WDIPIM 7/1/2014 7:17AM

  Funny - good luck!

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Itty Bitty Update on those Itty Bitty Bites

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I've been at this project, trying to eat EVERYTHING, meals AND snacks, using itty bitty bites, for 15 days now. At first I did it with gritted determination. Not grim determination, since it was sort of fun to see if I could do something 100% of an allotted time, and not gritted teeth because ... well, you can't eat at all if you grit your teeth. emoticon

Okay, sorry, the goof in me is leaking.

Anyway - dainty bites do not come naturally for me and often I have gobbled down a meal I KNOW is nutritionally and caloric-ly dense enough to have filled me up and I STILL feel like eating MORE. And we all know the result of THAT kind of eating. emoticon

So. The first 5 days were 100% successful because, well, the first 5 days usually are. They are the honeymoon phase of change. The next week was 82% successful - which is pretty good for me. But during these first two weeks, most of the pleasure came from succeeding at a challenge - achieving the procedural goal - ticking things off the list. Now, 2 weeks into dainty eating, I'm beginning to enjoy the actual act of eating my food slowly, in small, taste savoring bites. The rich blueberry flavor of breakfast yesterday became the delight of the morning. That low fat ice cream bar, nibbled AND tasted, gave me so much more pleasure than the usual MMM COLD SWEET GOOD! sensation I get from gobbling down dessert. It was so good, ONE was enough!

And that's the whole point of this exercise. There is really no lasting virtue in ticking things off a list. It is a nice way to get you going since it's a small physical act, easy to see and measure, but the goal was never to see how many checks I could put on a piece of paper. The point of changing my eating style was to reduce my size and increase my gustatorial pleasure. And the happy news is that, yesterday, at my official weigh-in, I was AT GOAL! emoticon

Lots of positive reinforcement here but I know that the old habit of gobbling isn't really gone for good. Yet. I can imagine situations where I would fall back into those bad ways. I'm still going to use the external structure of list ticking for a while - till eating itty bitty bites comes naturally. Besides - I want that new camera. emoticon

But, of one thing I am sure. Eating with small, taste savoring bites is an essential tool for me to stay at goal.

Happy Hump Day!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

2BDYNAMIC 6/13/2014 8:45AM

    WOW!!! Dainty eating huh? .............. I will have to stop eating like a hungry pack of wolves and slow-er down ............ don't know if I could actually be dainty but will give it a whirl! Anyway ................. Big emoticon on hitting goal!! emoticon ........ (You can get more blogs to come for this, I'm sure!)

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MSLZZY 6/12/2014 6:37AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KOHINOOR2 6/11/2014 9:44PM

    Congratulations! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BLPRETTYGIRL1 6/11/2014 8:43PM

    emoticon Little Bites. emoticon

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KANSASROSE67 6/11/2014 7:55PM

    I really, really, need to follow your example and work on "dainty eating."

Great job at getting back to goal!

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STRONGERLEANER 6/11/2014 4:42PM

    Congratulations!
I knew you'd get back to goal again!
You look at things realistically, break down what you need to do, and then YOU REALLY DO IT!!!
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MICKEYH 6/11/2014 3:49PM

    Great that you are doing well on your itty bitty. Getting encouragement from you, I did too dinner last night. It took me almost one hr to finish my big bowl of raw salad and a cup of broccoli. It was a great experience. I shall keep on eating like this way. Thanks for sharing your update. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JCMSMILE 6/11/2014 3:32PM

  Hoozah & hurray!! Keep it up!

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CAT-IN-CJ 6/11/2014 2:02PM

    Congrats! and way to go!!!!

The fun starts now that you're at 'goal' . . . maintenance is a lot harder than it sounds. And I think it's mostly a mental thing . . . . being satisfied with an accomplishment tends to make us think we can relax. But quite the contrary . . . I've found I had to declare WAR!!!

And I know you can do it!!!!

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ANGELBELIEVER 6/11/2014 1:21PM

    emoticon on reaching your goal wt. That is emoticon I know how I felt when I made goal many moons ago. Keep up the emoticon work. emoticon

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AMARILYNH 6/11/2014 12:27PM

    Loved this blog - and I SO need to heed its message! All too often I eat my meals in front of the computer and realize after the food is gone I barely remember eating it!! So thanks for the reminder!!

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123ELAINE456 6/11/2014 11:49AM

  Awesome Blog. Congratulations for reaching your Goal. WTG!!! Keep It Up. God Blessings Always. Have a Wonderful Week. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Take Care.

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WORKNPROGRESS49 6/11/2014 10:17AM

    emoticon

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KANOE10 6/11/2014 9:40AM

    emoticon That is great that you reached goal with those dainty bites. You have found a tool for you!

emoticon

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SLIMMERJESSE 6/11/2014 8:28AM

    Good reminder.

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NELLJONES 6/11/2014 8:19AM

    Sounds like you've found something that works for you.

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ELRIDDICK 6/11/2014 7:00AM

  Thanks for sharing

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WATERMELLEN 6/11/2014 6:58AM

    Super blog -- love the idea of "dainty eating"!! (No one has EVER excused me of "dainty"!!) And leaking goof is also a frequent biohazard in my life . . . .

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June Resolutions and the Itty Bitty Bite Report (with pictures)

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Oh la - June already. I want to shout "WAIT! STOP! I'm not done with May yet!"

Only we don't get that chance.


And it's not that I am not looking forward to June. I just need a little more time to finish May. June is the last month of the fiscal year and I have to scramble to make sure I spend all my library budget but not spend a penny more than my library budget. And I need to do it, or at least encumber it, this year by some ungodly date like June 9 or 10. With much new paperwork.

Then there is some staffing activity - which also involves new paperwork and new procedures. And the last week of school tours. And the summer reading program. I feel like a cartoon character.



Okay - time for a deep breath.



It is all going to work out just fine. And the reward at the end will be GIRLFRIENDS VISITING!!!!!! That's not us - but there will be photos. Ha! I should have thought of this first since just thinking about it now is making me happy - and relaxed.



But with a new month it's time for new resolutions. Last month I was supposed to draw for an hour a day. I didn't quite make that but I did put in a goodly amount of time on drawing. The funny part was that - as my drawing got better I became afraid of it. As long as it was amateurish I didn't seem to mind practicing - but once it began to look like someday it would become really good - I quit drawing. I left the project I was working on out on the dining room table, always reminding me that I was supposed to practice - but I backed off of it many days.

Well. Any quest involves some doubt. That's the purpose of a quest. And even if I didn't draw 31 days for 1 hour a day - I did get this much done:



I have no tutor right now - but then - I am a librarian. I believe if it's in a book you can learn it and the book I'm using is by Lee Hammond. I like her straightforward explanations and solid, simple advice. She says that when she wanted to learn to draw people she bought a hairstyle magazine and drew every face in the book. Brilliant idea! So I bought one too and I picked the back cover photo because it was big and the woman has unusual lines in her face.

Why, yes. Of course we have her books in the library.



So. You can see that I am moving in the right direction. This isn't really an art discussion post - it is my June Resolution post so I won't go on about what I've learned - I will only tell you I have two resolutions for this month.

1. KEEP DRAWING
2. TAKE SMALLER BITES WHEN EATING

The first resolution needs no explanations. I want to get better - I need to keep practicing - besides - it's really fun. I learn stuff about myself even on days I don't draw - and eventually I will develop courage.

The second resolution has to do with a trait I would really like to eradicate - even at this late date in my life. Yes. Of course I have room for improvement. And a few days ago I decided that I would do something about my bad habit of gobbling my food. I know it stems from letting myself get so thirsty I feel RAVENOUS. EMPTY. ROAR. COOKIE MONSTER HUNGRY.

So I set myself a little goal - to go 5 days - 3 meals and a snack - eating only with itty bitty bites. If I succeeded (I did!) I could put $100 into the New Camera Fund. Alas. My beloved camera has a dog hair underneath the lens. To get it out I have to send the camera to the manufacturer. That costs $200. A new camera as good as this one costs $300. I did the math. I started saving. And on Saturday I had achieved my goal! (see those dark smudges? dog hair)



But 5 days did not a transformation make. It merely showed me that I can eat more daintily. To reinforce the new skill I will do this for every meal and snack for the entire month of June. 4 times a day, 30 days, 120 little check marks in my Daytimer. And each check mark earns one dollar. I think I shall go shopping in July.



So there you have it. Coming in July - the New and Improved ME!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KMRJPR 6/6/2014 10:58PM

    Love your blog! The reward system you set up is inspiring!

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GOCALGAL 6/6/2014 7:20AM

    Wow! Loved your blog! Keep pursuing your goals. You have so much talent. You write with so much humor and wit and also draw well. You would be great at illustrating! emoticon

*I going to work on itty-bitty bites too!

Comment edited on: 6/6/2014 7:22:27 AM

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DEADCENTER 6/4/2014 7:10PM

    emoticon

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SWEDE_SU 6/4/2014 3:26AM

    emoticon emoticon

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CLAIREINPARIS 6/3/2014 3:41PM

    Great objectives for June! But... do you mind me asking... how on earth did the dog's hair get under the lens? :) I thought these things were sealed or something?Anyway, a new camera is always very exciting!
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STEPH-KNEE 6/3/2014 1:50AM

    You are so fabulous I can't even stand it!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STRONGERLEANER 6/2/2014 7:59PM

    It's crazy how much camera repair costs. Hoping you'll love the new one!

The drawing looks really good. Drawing has never been my strong suit but someday, many moons from now, I intend to learn to draw better.

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MPETERSON2311 6/2/2014 11:00AM

    You got that camera in the bag!

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MSLZZY 6/2/2014 9:44AM

    emoticon
I see a new camera in your future!
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KANOE10 6/2/2014 9:02AM

    emoticon Great job on those tiny bites! You are going to get that new camera soon. Good luck with the school year end stress. I am in the same boat and feel the pressure of too many things to do.

Have a great June. I love your drawing. You are talented.

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123ELAINE456 6/1/2014 11:46PM

  Love the Blog. You Can Do It. You Are Very Talented And Inspiring. Those Are Very Good Goals. Keep Pushing Forward. You Will Make It. God Blessings Always. Have a Wonderful Week. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!Take Care. Love The Photos.

Comment edited on: 6/1/2014 11:47:24 PM

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KOHINOOR2 6/1/2014 10:07PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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USMAWIFE 6/1/2014 8:10PM

    emoticon

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BETHGILLIGAN 6/1/2014 7:38PM

    I thought about you when I was eating dinner tonight. I laid my fork on my plate to slow down. emoticon thanks for helping me be more aware of this. I love your drawing! Keep at it for sure! You are doing a great job setting and achieving goals!! YAY for you!

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BLPRETTYGIRL1 6/1/2014 3:27PM

    emoticon for your goals ! emoticon

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DIANNEMT 6/1/2014 1:30PM

    Great on the goals! I need to work on the little bites, too. I thought of you as hubby and I split a cupcake. It was really too tall but you needed a bit of all of it to get all the tastes-so I opened WIDE. Will try to do better"

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ALICIA214 6/1/2014 1:17PM

 


emoticon

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CAT-IN-CJ 6/1/2014 1:17PM

    Woohoo! love your blog!!! You are so talented . . . and inspiring!
What kind of camera are you getting?


BTW, I did the same thing after I started taking watercolor classes again.
I wanted to quit. But I kept running into my instructor, and she just wouldn't stop pestering me. So, I'm working my way through the challenge.

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ANGELBELIEVER 6/1/2014 12:54PM

    I continue to get a kick out of your cartoons. Love the goals and rewards you have set for yourself for June. I'm sure you'll succeed. Are you going camera shopping in July?

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SLIMMERJESSE 6/1/2014 12:51PM

    Love your blogs.

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Itty Bitty Steps

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Whew. What a sweet long weekend of rest and sunshine, conversations and peacefulness.

And indulgences.

The scale is my friend this morning, but I feel sluggish and I KNOW I downed a lot more sugar than usual - a lot more sugar than is healthy. How do I know? Because my tummy is saying "ugh - don't put anything into me."

And it will be easy to eliminate the sugar. Even as I ate that fudge I knew it was a mistake. I was trying to eat my way into feeling like a party. (what does THAT say about how I define party? Must they all feel like a child's birthday party?) Heck, even as I BOUGHT the stuff I knew it was probably a stupid thing to do. Well - it is gone now and the store that sells the ice cream and candy I want to buy is complicated to get into via car so it's easy to drive past without stopping.

Besides - this isn't the blog post I really wanted to make. I'm just sayin' that when the tummy is saying "leave me alone" is a good time to think about tweaks and trims I can do to make it feel better. And something I've noticed about myself is that I tend to gobble. I take BIG BITES. I usually finish my food first. In part I think it's an image thing. It isn't polite to stare at people when they're eating so of course, nice people like us don't. The only time you see people eating is in advertisements. Like these:



Uh. No.

I know better. I was taught to take small bites, to eat like "a lady". But that was long ago in the Pleistocene era when I was a little girl. Time for me to be my own mama and improve my table manners. While I was eating dinner last night, it dawned on me that gobbling my food is a sure fire way to eat more food than I really want or need. I'd like to trim back a few lbs so that I'm below my generous goal weight. But in true Sparkpeople fashion, I want to do this gently. I want to use small steps, create a streak and reward myself afterwards. And I suddenly knew that a tiny tweak I could make - one itty bitty step would be to go the rest of this week - 5 little days - consciously eating all my meals with tiny bites (and tiny sips).

So. Just for the next 5 days - about 20 meals - I plan to eat daintily and stop when I'm full.
I'll track these little steps with check marks in my daytimer.
When I have 20 checks I will give myself a reward - which will be to put $100 in the New Camera fund.

and maybe the other reward will be that I eat a little more slowly and enjoy a little more completely, all those wonderful meals.

Back with a report on Sunday morning.



  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MAYBER 7/4/2014 11:42PM

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts with determination and dedication we will all succeed one day at a time love prayers peace
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CRUISEBOUND2014 6/17/2014 11:21AM

    You are a true inspiration!

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SUPERSYLPH 6/16/2014 12:10AM

    emoticon

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CHERIJ16 6/8/2014 8:39PM

    I have to work on slowing down too. Thanks for the reminder.

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PIGGYWAY 6/5/2014 7:55PM

  THAT`S HOW WE DO IT emoticon

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LEANMEAN2 6/4/2014 6:59AM

    This is a really good idea. Thanks

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DIAMOND102 6/3/2014 6:08PM

    emoticon emoticon I'm trying also to take tiny bites and eat slower, I know this will stop me from overeating. emoticon

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NEWTINK 6/2/2014 8:45AM

    emoticon

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NASFKAB 6/2/2014 8:15AM

  emoticon idea emoticon emoticon

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WHITEANGEL4 6/1/2014 10:58PM

    I am a slow eater and take small bites. Hubby use to be finished with a meal 25 minutes before me.....as a result he slowed down eating to just not be sitting there waiting and guess what he is dropping a few pounds without trying

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MRSRIGS1 6/1/2014 3:55PM

    emoticon

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ANGELN325 6/1/2014 9:41AM

    I have the same problem and I think it's partly responsible for my tummy woes. I like the itty bitty bites idea because putting my fork down between bites and focusing on just eating doesn't work for me. I actually eat slower when I'm in front of the computer because I'm more focused on that and I take a bite only when I'm waiting for something to load so a whole lot less eating going on, but I like having times where it's just my daughter and I eating and I want to focus on that and our relationship so I'm going to do the dainty bites as well and see if I can up my eating times. I'm trying to get consistently at 15 minutes and then work my way up to 30 minute meals.

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HYATTI1 5/31/2014 10:55AM

    So far I have not accomplished the slow eating routine, but I have tried it here and there.

Joanna

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CORNERKICK 5/30/2014 11:36PM

  emoticon emoticon

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TISH0125 5/30/2014 12:10PM

  Got the same problemo, EEK! Thanks for the head's up and reminder...good call!

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BARBARAJ73 5/30/2014 9:43AM

    Great idea! emoticon

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SHARONCAPPS 5/30/2014 8:09AM

  I eat too fast also. It tastes so good that I shovel it in. Thanks for sharing this as it made me think that it is time for me to slow down too. We can do it.

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AMBER461 5/29/2014 8:44PM

  Thanks for sharing. You have a great idea when you said to itty bitty bites.

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BAMAJAM2 5/29/2014 2:04PM

  Funny--- I was just saying that I "gobble" my food too fast, then I see your blog!
I had to laugh about the app to set a timer for each bite---LOL
Good luck!

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JERICHO1991 5/29/2014 1:16PM

    Looking forward to hearing your report.

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KACEYSW 5/29/2014 12:20PM

    You are worth your best efforts!!!

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AURIANNE67 5/29/2014 11:55AM

    emoticon

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KCHANDLER623 5/29/2014 11:42AM

    Thank you for the reminder. I tend to eat too fast also.

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MAYBER 5/29/2014 11:24AM

    Been there Done that
Continue on your journey with those itty bitty steps
You will succeed
One day at a time
Love Prayers Peace
God Bless
emoticon

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SHOAPIE 5/29/2014 10:37AM

    emoticon

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JACKIE542 5/29/2014 10:27AM

    Love this, I have also learned to eat slowly, has helped me too, I also leave something on my plate emoticon

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DNRAE1 5/29/2014 9:33AM

    Me too, me too! Gobbler, be gone, and dainty, here I come!!!! emoticon Hmmm, he doesn't look too dainty, does he? Have a great day!

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THOMS1 5/29/2014 9:18AM

    Small bites like small steps work, so here's to small bites as well as small sips. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GOOSIEMOON 5/29/2014 9:09AM

    Keep on figuring out what works for you!
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CHERYLHURT 5/29/2014 7:02AM

  Slow eating, small bites.!

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LINDAM.1 5/29/2014 2:52AM

  emoticon Together cheering each other on

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BLUEJEAN99 5/29/2014 1:58AM

    emoticon

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LIVELYGIRL2 5/29/2014 1:31AM

  that's a good way to track and work toward the camera emoticon

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DOILIEQUEEN 5/29/2014 12:59AM

    emoticon

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JIBBIE49 5/29/2014 12:10AM

    Great to see your blog featured in the Spark Mail.

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CICELY360 5/28/2014 11:57PM

  good blog

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SUGAR0814 5/28/2014 10:56PM

    emoticon Thank you for sharing!

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AMBER461 5/28/2014 10:53PM

  What a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

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KHALIA2 5/28/2014 10:52PM

  emoticon emoticon

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TINY67 5/28/2014 10:24PM

    emoticon emoticon

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FRABBIT 5/28/2014 10:23PM

  I too need to use itty bitty steps!

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EMMACORY 5/28/2014 9:34PM

    You have a great game plan! emoticon

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FISHGUT3 5/28/2014 8:21PM

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MSROZZIE 5/28/2014 8:21PM

    emoticon goals and good luck! Enjoyed your blog, thanks for sharing. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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VJOHANESON1224 5/28/2014 7:40PM

    There is an app to help with eating more slowly. It's called "Eat Slower" and you can adjust the timing from 20 seconds to 3 minutes. You only take a bite when the timer goes off.

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BGOLIC 5/28/2014 7:37PM

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DIAMOND102 5/28/2014 7:26PM

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MARYJEANSL 5/28/2014 7:23PM

  I've tried to do something like that before, but I found it really hard.

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MJ7DM33 5/28/2014 6:43PM

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Why I Read Your Blog

Saturday, May 24, 2014

The BACK STORY:

A year ago I reached my goal weight and weighed in at my Weight Watcher meeting within the goal range (2 lbs) for 9 fabulous months in a row! woo woo. So proud of me. Still so proud of that.

Since Christmas, though, and TheHeartAttack, and the serious cold weather, and the Bad Employee I Had To Fire, and the death of a cousin, and the New Administration with its New Rules, and the rotator cuff injury - you know - since life tossed me a basket full of lemons - I've struggled with the weight thing for 5 months now. Yes - I touched the magic goal weight a time or two, but I have not been able to stay there. Sometimes I've felt like a failure. Sometimes I've felt like a fraud.

The FRONT STORY:

Most of my time here on Spark People is spent reading Your Blogs, because you guys are the most amazing, inspiring, friendly, encouraging people I know. You have insights that blow me away. You discover ways of coping, ways of winning, and ways of triumphing that I can copy. You give me perspective and a new way of looking at my own situation that can turn my feelings of failure into sources of great pride and I want to thank you, one and all, for that.

Take my friend Steph-knee, who's lost ooodles of pounds and then found herself making friends with some old, bad habits and putting on weight again. "The biggest problem is that, what worked before (simply making a decision to get back on track and DOING IT) isn't working anymore. I need more, I need something bigger." she says in her blog post TIME FOR A REALITY CHECK:

www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5697408


And if you follow along with her next few posts - you'll see she's found something bigger. But first she had to take the pressure off herself by shifting her focus to actually MAINTAINING her plateau instead of trying to shed lbs. I mean - who EVER read a weight loss article about MAINTAINING PLATEAUS??? And yet - isn't that exactly what you need to do when the world starts crashing in on you?

There is MOBYCARP who was kiboshed by an injury (ask me about trying to press two measly 5 pound weights with my barely healed rotator cuff - - yeah - not happening this week). He has THIS to say:

"Maintenance is not steady state. It requires adjustments from time to time. And once in a while, when Life Happens, the adjustments are more severe and more sudden than they have been in a while. Well, that's life. I need to deal with it, make what adjustments I know I need, and monitor the results to see if I need to make further adjustments. "

in his blog post MAINTENANCE ADJUSTMENTS:

www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5701001

he explores the choices he has had to make now that he can't work out like he wants to.

No doubt about it - these are words I needed to read. I have loved being able to eat more, have a glass of wine today as well as yesterday, and just pound it off at the gym but it's not happening these days. I can still burn calories, but my upper body muscle tone is not what it was. I can only lift so much and I really need to be doing the PT exercises more regularly. I know this. I also know my schedule was totally whip-lashed by changes OTHER people made in my world - changes I have to find a way to live with. But till I find it - I need to make calorie adjustments.

Do I like this?

No.

Can I do it?

I better.

But then there are those feelings of failure - the sensation that I am a fraud because I'm NOT at my goal weight. I'm not even 2 pounds over my goal weight - and have been as much as 6 lbs over my goal weight and if you remember, in elementary school math we learned to average up once we got to 5!! Scary. But reading TINAJANE76 this morning made me realize that I am neither a failure nor a fraud. I am a success story. In her blog ADAPTING TO CHANGES

www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5701239


She says "I've spent more time above my goal weight this past year than I'm comfortable with, but in the grand scheme of things, I've achieved even greater success than some magical number on the scale. I didn't let life's lemons get the better of me--and the resulting lemonade is pretty sweet. "

I still fit into the clothes I bought last summer. I even got 3 compliments on how I looked this week. Sweet. As sweet as Tinajane's lemonade, in fact. In the big picture of life - with the rotten stuff that's landed on my plate - to be only a few pounds higher than my goal weight is a pretty good thing. And knowing that everyone is fighting this fight - not just the weight and fitness fight, but the fear of failure one - fills me with confidence - confidence that we will all win so long as we don't quit.

That is why I read your blog. There isn't a THANK YOU icon big enough to express my gratitude. I don't know what I'd do without you.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CRUISEBOUND2014 6/17/2014 5:21AM

    I love that you wrote "confidence that we will all win so long as we don't quit. "
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ROXYCARIN 6/11/2014 12:41AM

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LOGOULD 6/10/2014 9:52PM

    Wow! Thank you SO much Bess, for this incredible blog. It's been a tough year for me to with a sister coming home from the rehab hospital more handicapped than before, to my own injuries and the steady creep of the numbers on the scale, surgery, loss of three employees out of five leaving just two of us at work to handle the busiest "busy season" we have ever had. Somehow though, reading that others face just as difficult, or even more so, struggles, makes it easier to accept and to continue to believe that despite it all, as long as I don't give up, I can't fail! Thanks for the HUGE dose of encouragement!

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WENDYANNE61 6/9/2014 1:04AM

    Wonderful blogs like this have changed my mindset, given me that extra oomph, lifted my spirits, given me food for thought and helped me keep on going for the last 21 months! I love it all! Thank you!

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NICKI984 6/8/2014 12:21PM

    Thanks for sharing. This is so true. Reading other blogs helps me gain insight and inspires me as well.

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DSJB9999 6/7/2014 7:03PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon and emoticon for sharing this wonderful blog, you really are very special!

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ADRIENALINE 6/5/2014 5:50PM

    Man you are a sublime inspiration! Thanks!

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KATIE3908 6/5/2014 11:38AM

    So true. Every day is a challenge but we can do it!!

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SUNNYBEACHGIRL 6/5/2014 10:43AM

    I love the blogs too

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MOMMY445 6/5/2014 9:46AM

    what a great blog! so well said!

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CELIAMINER 6/5/2014 9:09AM

    Wishing you some awesome, low-cal lemonade!
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IAMAGEMLOVER 6/5/2014 7:10AM

    I can completely relate. While I have not gained more than 3 pounds I have not been maintaining the healthy habits the last couple months I did while losing the weight and then maintaining for 17 months. My Mom got seriously ill, then things happened one after the other. I am trying to get back on track now and there are days I do it, then there are days I fall back into bad habits. emoticon

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-SHOREIDO- 6/5/2014 6:06AM

    emoticon and keepon reading,writing and Sparking!!

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CHANGINGHORSES 6/5/2014 4:50AM

    Very nice and full of good points!

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MANDELOVICH 6/5/2014 4:01AM

    I loved reading this! You are a huge success and it's your positive attitude, reflective nature, and resilient spirit that assure me that you will continue to shine no matter what gets thrown at you! Bravo!!

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NEW-CAZ 6/5/2014 3:43AM

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NUOVAELLE 6/5/2014 3:15AM

    Thank you so much for this super-motivational blog!
Let's keep on fighting the fear-of-failure fight! All together, we're already winners!
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DAWNDMOORE40 6/5/2014 12:41AM

    emoticon on not giving up on yourself when life handed you a basket "full of lemons"! Instead of giving up, you made lemonade! Keep going strong and stay focused and you will get back to your goal weight if that is truly what makes you happy! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MJREIMERS 6/4/2014 10:31PM

    emoticon for not only giving us your great blog, but also highlighting others that have made a difference for you! That is exactly what Spark is all about and you are the epitome of what inspiration is! emoticon

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MICKEYH 6/4/2014 10:08PM

    emoticon so much for sharing this blog. I'm in same situation and this blog was very encouraging. I do not need to feel of gilt nor feeling of fraud. I just need to do best that I can and keep on keeping on. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DALID414 6/4/2014 10:02PM

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KELLIEBEAN 6/4/2014 9:53PM

    You have definitely made lemonade from the lemons that were dumped on you! I applause your tenacity and fabulous attitude.

I agree with the sense of community here. Blogs like your really help me through a day.

Congratulations on your accomplishments and thanks for being here!

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PEZMOM1 6/4/2014 9:02PM

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THOMS1 6/4/2014 8:52PM

    emoticon Bess! I know about injury and how the stress of it all weighs on your mind when you are forbidden to not do anything but just heal. I too have spent hours just reading blogs and that has gotten me through some really tough times with my weight. I thank you for this blog. emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 6/4/2014 8:38PM

    Really good points you make.I'm glad At Goal & Maintaining Team is highlighting it now, because you deserve an award for this one for sure. You are absolutely right about the importance of linking to other people on SP, especially by reading blogs.

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SUSIEMT 6/4/2014 8:25PM

    Thank you Bess! I also gain lots of strength from reading those same peoples blogs and of course others as well. I know that feeling of"fraud" very well! I always have to tell myself you have come so far! You have kept over 155 lbs off for four years! Keep up the good work Susan! Duh! With that being said I have to say that the At Goal and Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance Challenges have really helped me tremendously! I have stayed close to my goal for the past 6 months! Just recently I have been able to lower my center weight down by 1 lb and haven't had any trouble staying close to it. It makes me feel like such a success! I guess it is truly the little things in life that matter to me! LOL
Have a great day and I also understand about the rotator cuff problems. I just spent the last 6 weeks not being able to do any upper body strength training. All I want is functional fitness for my upper body at this point!
Woo Hoo to you Bess!

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JANCARD 6/4/2014 8:01PM

  You are SO right. Sharing our struggles with each other provides so much insight and support. Loved your message and sending a big emoticon your way!

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MALAMI518 6/4/2014 7:51PM

    Fantastic blog! I am just beginning maintenance and having a few struggles with it. All of these blogs are helping me so much. Thank you for sharing!

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DEADCENTER 6/4/2014 7:33PM

    Wow....... I really needed that.... Excellent.... Thank you.

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GLORIAMAJDI 6/4/2014 7:09PM

    What you say is so true...the community here can't be beat. And we all support each other when LIFE HAPPENS! I know I couldn't do this without my SparkFriends and my teams!

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BOOKAPHILE 6/4/2014 7:09PM

    I needed to hear this today! I'm above my goal weight and struggling with stuff that has been thrown in my lap by life. My clothes still fit well, so I'm done with the self-flagellation and on to concentrating on maintaining the exercise and moderating the eating.

Thanks, my friend!

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ECCOVISION1 6/4/2014 6:33PM

    Thank you so much for this blog!!!

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HOLLYM48 6/4/2014 6:25PM

    Congrats on being the featured blog this week! I totally agree with everything you say and we will do this with the help of one another! Keep up the great work!

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AMARILYNH 6/1/2014 2:06PM

    Love this blog!! Its a perfect description of the reality of weight maintenance - its not 'one size fits all' and we have to roll with the punches as we live our way through it! Like you, I gain so much inspiration from the blogs of others. You mentioned Steph-Knee - she inspires me every day! As does TinaJane76 - what would we do without her leadership in the Maintenance team?

I feel SO VERY BLESSED to have found SparkPeople because with the help and support of my SparkFriends and Spark Teams I feel, for the very first time in my adult life, that THIS TIME I can really do it - I can KEEP the weight off. If my being here can help someone else on their journey, what more can I ask?? Blessings!! emoticon emoticon

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HEALTHY-SPARK 5/29/2014 4:09PM

    This was really fun to read -- thanks for posting!
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CLAIREINPARIS 5/28/2014 1:17AM

    Such a great blog! And I am really glad all these blogs/people have helped you to see things differently and to focus on what you have achieved (and are still achieving today despite very difficult circumstances) rather than on the very few lbs you may have gained. Great attitude!

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BRADMILL2922 5/27/2014 3:49AM

    The Spark Community is so great for so many reasons! At the front is the amazing people and stories that we find here! Thanks for sharing!

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TORTISE110 5/26/2014 2:57PM

    You contribute so much to the spirit I love on My Spark and are such a good Spark friend. THANK YOU. (There seems to be an echo....)

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AJR2013AJR 5/26/2014 10:44AM

    What a great blog! I am going to read the other blogs you suggested when I have time! I'm nowhere near my goal, but I still feel good about maintaining my loss all year, and your blog confirmed that I am doing just fine at my own pace! Thanks again!

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SHEILA1505 5/26/2014 4:01AM

    Loved this, Bess! It really hits the mark
Big hugs xxx

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MPETERSON2311 5/25/2014 11:21PM

    Hugs

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TANYA602 5/25/2014 10:43AM

    Maintenance is one of the toughest roads on this journey, especially with any curve balls thrown your way. I truly believe that we are constantly learning from one another and you are a Rock Star in your wisdom and so far from being a failure.
I love what you've said here!

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BETHGILLIGAN 5/25/2014 9:54AM

    Great blog and, oh, so true!! I get so much inspiration from others on here. At times, it's what keeps me going! Yours is one of the blogs that inspire me and make me smile!! Thank you for sharing!

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MSLZZY 5/25/2014 7:24AM

    And you keep me grounded, knowing that success and failure go hand in hand on this journey! HUGS!

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STRONGERLEANER 5/24/2014 11:17PM

    ...and we read your blog for inspiration as well!
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MLC721 5/24/2014 7:49PM

    Thank you for giving me a different perspective on maintaining. Great blog! Thank you.

Marsha/TN

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BLPRETTYGIRL1 5/24/2014 7:10PM

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ANGELBELIEVER 5/24/2014 2:38PM

    What a great blog. Thanks for sharing. emoticon

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SLIMMERJESSE 5/24/2014 11:31AM

    What a fabulous blog!

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WATERMELLEN 5/24/2014 10:50AM

    "Liked" your blog -- liked your shout-outs to some of the greatest bloggers here! Maintaining (the main thing, after all) is about doing exactly what you're doing and what all the other MAINtainers here are doing. Which is . . . figuring it out, day after day, in that great "experiment of one". And so many people are so generous in sharing what works "for them". Yeah.

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