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Is resistance becoming less futile?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Can it be? Is all this quiet conversation with my Wild Child really making a difference?

It seems like it is. It seems easier to forgo the extra desert (don't gasp or blink - a desert is half a cup of tapioca - one skinny cow ice cream sandwich - not a slice of Cheesecake Factory Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake) It feels like it's easier to forget about food for longer stretches of time.

I seem to be remembering to swap out a SIN (Substitute Inedible Nourishment) for an EEC!(Eat Empty Calories). I spent a few minutes gently brushing my hairiest dog yesterday instead of snacking when I got home late from work.

It seems so. It feels so. It's early days yet, though. And the True Test comes tomorrow, when I toddle on up to Graves Mt. Lodge (Virginia's may know this place of gargantuan meals) to sit for 2 days in long meetings (anybody who works knows about these) only to flow back upstairs for More Gargantuan Meals served family style - i. e. 8 heaping platters of country cookin' will be passed under your nose at every meal.

I usually leave that place feeling somewhat bilious. Let us see how I feel on Friday night this year. Let's see if I can take that Wild Child out in public. In fact - let me go ask her what it will take to get her to behave nicely while we're submitted to such temptation.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 4/21/2010 10:50PM

    Tell WC to be nice and give her a gold star for good behavior LOL!

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PATMARIE45 4/21/2010 11:54AM

    I used to sit as close to a mentor or possible future promotion as I could and then make a dedicated decision to put 1/2 less on my plate than I would normally. I also listened very intently to the dinner conversation and contributed when I could, and ate slowly. I found that it took time for my brain to register that I was full, and lollygagging around like this gave it time to send that message. Humor and a positive attitude will get us through this. Pat

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CRAVE_FREE 4/21/2010 9:59AM

    Sounds like you are living life from a place of thinner peace! emoticon

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JKTENTATIVE 4/21/2010 8:57AM

    I hope there will be some healthy alternatives. I find that when I am in such a setting, if I at least have the option of fresh fruit and veggies, it helps a whole lot. And, I let myself eat as much of those healthy choices as I feel like. (Ordering a large hot tea right when you sit down is another good thing to keep you busy when the goodies start to come round). Good luck!
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CINDYMCD1 4/21/2010 7:51AM

    Go Wild Child, go...show them how it can be done!:)

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Dieting on the right side of the brain

Monday, April 19, 2010

In the 1980's I began to see books about the bicameral mind creeping into the public market. The phrase was coined by Julian James in his book "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind" which I tried to read and found heavy going. The one that hit the popular market hardest, though, was "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards, though my mother, a very fine artist, claimed that most of her ideas were representations of Kimon Nicolaides book "The Natural Way to Draw" which I own and pull out and enjoy every now and then.

Okay - last of the librarian stuff - promise.

I'm really here to report about my experiment with letting my WC right brain actually write to my SM left brain a la Martha Beck's suggestion.

First off, it was fun. It was a wee tiny bit scary but it was also exhilarating. I used her suggested questions from the word dominated left brain School Marm and wrote whatever popped into my head when I switched the pen over to the right brain Wild Child. Here's the conversation:

SM: Hey how are you?
WC: fine thanks

SM: What can I do for you today?
WC: food not hungry (something, something) rest, dog, glad

SM: What can I do to help you eat less?
WC: Play, go, rest, slow, sleep, run run, song, listen, ha ha hahaha

SM: Well, I'll give all these a try. More sleep and more laughter, huh?
WC: Got it, more sleep, gogogo

SM: OK - well, I'll see you tomorrow, we'll talk again - often
WC: Good


Hey - it doesn't take someone with a psychology degree to see that my Wild Child wants more play and laughter and MORE SLEEP! And maybe more time petting my dogs. But the interesting thing was that I could really tap into how I felt the rest of the day - and into the evening - especially about food. I did NOT eat too much - and 90% of it was both healthy and delicious. And there was a sort of calm glow going on.

I can't wait to try this again.

And this morning, when I woke up at about quarter after 4, I didn't rationalize that it would soon be 5 and I might as well get up and go do stuff. I very deliberately turned over and went back to sleep, waking up at quarter after 6, feeling pretty good but wishing I had another day off today as sweet as yesterday's. I really need to schedule some vacation time.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WEDDWT 4/19/2010 7:45PM

    I like your Wild Child - but she's not so wild, she's very sensible and so polite!
Hope you find more time to talk with her!
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Like how 'bout now?!

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SANDY5882 4/19/2010 10:07AM

    Which Martha Beck book are you referring to here? I love her books! Thanks for the info. Sandy

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ELLENB10 4/19/2010 9:10AM

    I've read Martha Besk, too, - actually I listened to her on a CD to pass the time ironing. I got more ironing done that week because I wanted to hear her read! But hadn't thought about her for a while - I'll have to find a print copy and review! Thank you!

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CRAVE_FREE 4/19/2010 8:39AM

    I love your posts. I haven't gotten Beck's book yet, but I'm enjoying it through you. Over the weekend I tried talking to my WC like you talk to yours and it kept me from eating more than I needed. You rock! emoticon

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MSLZZY 4/19/2010 7:57AM

    Very interesting! Glad you slept in. Have a great day! emoticon

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ALEXTHEHUNN 4/19/2010 7:52AM

    I'm enjoying Beck's book, to the extent I've gotten time to read it. I definitely want to read more of her writings.

The Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain was eye-opening to me. That she would tap into the same thing makes perfect sense.

Thanks for putting me onto this.
Alex

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Those fleeting emotions are still powerful

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Thank you all so much for the good wishes. We're going to spend the whole day playing together but our biorhythms don't change even for an anniversary so my Night Owl is still asleep while this Lark has a few moments to blog and I have a few thoughts I want to share before I forget them. Sieve brain stuff.

As you all know, I have been devoting a fairly good bit of time to letting my Wild Child and my School Marm duke it out and I am much more aware of fleeting emotions as they flicker through me. The hint of jealousy when a friend tells you of an adventure she's setting out on, while you are just scrubbing the bathroom floor. The pinch of frustration when the 60 watt light bulb is too dim and you haven't any stronger ones and it's 10 o'clock at night. That tiny pinch of anger when the socks are on the bedroom floor instead of in the hamper that is right next to them.

It dawned on me that it's important to acknowledge those twinge emotions because ... I think that tamping them down, ignoring them because we are ashamed of them, because it's polite, because they aren't really important enough to investigate, makes us stop listening to all sorts of emotions - which are our Wild Child's way of warning us that something's wrong. We just placate it with chocolate.

Well. I'll be. hmm. have I had a light bulb moment here?

I also notice about my WC and my SM is that for the most part they like each other and cooperate. Like true siblings they squabble and argue and each can make the other truly miserable. What I realize is that they both want me to be safe, they both want my life to be good and they often embrace.

So, I'm working my way through the 4-day win book, making head changes. I'm about finished my ridiculously easy first 4-day win, which I have accomplished, so long as I eat no more than 2 deserts tonight. LOL Really! That was what makes it so ridiculous. It's been hard to do the daily rewards because I tend to forget about that part, but the 4 day win reward, which is sort of big this time, because it's the first and because we're getting a tax refund, is to purchase some yarn from elann dot com - because they have some stuff I want to buy.

And I am utterly drooling at the idea of writing with both hands, dominant hand asking questions and Wild Child hand answering - so that is going to be my next 4-day win challenge. I'll let you know how it goes. Sounds like an art class to me!

Happy Saturday

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OPAL50 4/17/2010 8:39PM

    Well...great idea! If you are writing with both hands you won't be able to eat. emoticon LOL!

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MSLZZY 4/17/2010 12:02PM

    Stay in touch with those emotions but let them leave as quickly as they come.

Writing with both hands-interesting concept! Have fun and have a wonderful weekend! emoticon

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TAMMS001 4/17/2010 9:00AM

    Oh WOW! I love the idea of using both hands to write! I will be curious as to how it goes and I just might give a try too! Great blog! Thanks!
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JKTENTATIVE 4/17/2010 8:59AM

    Very intriguing. Can't wait to get deeper into this 4-day Win book...

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It's in the stars - but it's also at the picnic table

Friday, April 16, 2010

Do you read your horoscope? Do you scoff at people who read horoscopes? Himself, who is an astronomer, twitches when I read them out loud so, of course, I'm sorely tempted to do it every day just to tease him. I don't, but I'm tempted. My son, who is pure Haile engineer (ALL Hailes are engineers, even the poets among them) says disgustedly "Mom, do you really think one twelfth of the world is going to stub his toe today?" To which I reply - "I do not care about the math. I am only having fun. I also read fortune cookies. I do not base my retirement investments on them. It's play, like cards or hopscotch."

But when a horoscope hits close to home I do like to acknowledge it and boy, look at mine
(and all the rest of my Virgo sisters and brothers battling weight issues) for today.

"You have lately been getting quite an education. You have started to see old familiar situations in a new light. You may not feel any older ... but you are most definitely wiser. Events, this weekend, will enable you to apply that wisdom. You will naturally know that it is safe to stand back and take a philosophical view of circumstances that might once have caused you much aggravation and exasperation. That means you can have power over a factor which once had power over you."

Well. Well and well. Tomorrow Himself and I celebrate our 36th wedding anniversary and we're going to an all you can eat fundraiser meal in our community. I've never been - it's always around our anniversary and it's a bit pricey. But this year we're going and a scant month ago I was pretty worried about being exposed to all that food. I can pretty much guarantee there will be every high calorie fabulous tasting food these farm wives, and daughters of farmers can stir up. The food is aimed at the menfolk 'round here, which means in addition to being tasty it's going to be plentiful.

One of my goals listed on my sparkpage is to be calm around food situations and this is exactly the kind of foodie situation I was thinking about. And do you know? I don't feel nervous about going. I honestly think I have some tricks in my pocket now for facing the high energy sugared and spiced social foodie situation with calm equanimity and the power to make healthy choices. Happily make them with every part of me cooperating willingly to have a good time.

Neat, huh? To have power over food that once had power over me? Sounds good to me. Hope you gain that same power, even if you are not a Virgo or don't read horoscopes.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALEXTHEHUNN 4/16/2010 8:32AM

    Enjoy your anniversary outing. Sounds like it's going to be fun.

I like reading horoscopes when I see then, though I never seek them out. As for their occasionally seeming to be "right", a colleague of mine used to say, "Even a blind hog finds an acorn now and then."

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JLITT62 4/16/2010 8:02AM

    I've no doubt that tomorrow's report (or the next day's, I guess) will be positive.

Have wonderful anniversary! 36 years is something to celebrate.

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MERALO 4/16/2010 7:23AM

    I read the horoscopes when I get a chance...I usually forget what was written as soon as I put the mag down though!

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MSLZZY 4/16/2010 7:17AM

    I read horoscopes, laugh about them and move on. Good luck with your eating adventure and Happy Anniversary! Enjoy the day! emoticon

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When a craving strikes - SIN

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Still wallowing in the mind of Martha Beck and yesterday I took her advice and SIN-ed. SIN stands for Substitute Inedible Nourishment. This could be tactile - anything from stroking a pet, to a massage or hot bath, to passionate lovemaking. All wonderful ways to make yourself feel good, but hardly appropriate in an office setting, where afternoon boredom eating so frequently hits. But it can also be intellectual. Our brains love to learn and we are each of us very particular in the things we really love to learn. There are no value judgements on knowledge - what your mind loves is what it loves. So you may love learning heart surgery or you may love learning fly tying. The thing is - in an office setting it's a heck of a lot easier to pick up your favorite hobby magazine and read an article than it is to take a hot bath in the staff washroom.

I love puzzles, quizzes and filling out forms. (even IRS forms hold a certain fascination for me) Yesterday I was working hard on some tedious-but-important-to-my-job writing and when I came to a good stopping point I was assailed by an urge to snack. Fortunately the Four-Day-Win book was on my desk and it's chock a block full of little fun forms you could fill out - exercises she calls them, all of which ask you to come up with mini rewards. So I opened the book, filled out the first form, thought up a little gift to myself and wrote it down and in less than 10 minutes I had absolutely zero craving. I had never been hungry. I just wanted a treat for completing a task.

woo woo. Is this a non-scale victory or what? I would have sworn I was hungry but I just wanted some love. and I gave me some.

So. Go SIN next time you get a craving and see what happens.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OLSEN9310 4/16/2010 6:59AM

    ooooh, I love this concept. I have been craving soda lately....but hate to break my streak (none since January )....I do like crossword puzzles and word games....maybe will try this option when it hits me :) nice one!

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JKTENTATIVE 4/15/2010 10:35PM

    You are an inspiration. I want you to know that I went out and bought that Martha Beck book because of you. Am only in the first chapter ...but will keep you posted and perhaps we can compare notes.

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4LUCKYMOM 4/15/2010 10:08AM

  good stuff emoticon

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CRAVE_FREE 4/15/2010 9:47AM

    GREAT idea! I will probably use this today!

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CRAVE_FREE 4/15/2010 9:47AM

    GREAT idea! I will probably use this today!

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GRAMJANX5 4/15/2010 8:42AM

  Thanks for sharing. The book,"Four-Day- Win" sound interesting.

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HARPERLADY 4/15/2010 7:50AM

    what a wonderful blog, so helpful and so true I will definitly keep that in mind each and everyday, thanks so much for posting emoticon

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IFDEEVARUNS2 4/15/2010 7:45AM

    Great tip, I'll have to try this.

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JLITT62 4/15/2010 7:37AM

    Well darn, I needed this last night.

Why is it that when I'm in the throes of eating stuff I haven't planned for, I never think to try something else?

I guess last night it might've been because I was actually in the middle of doing soemthing else. It wasn't so much a craving as a hungry feeling. Altho my binge looks like this: 2 dark chocolate Hershey's kisses, 1/4 dark chocolate peanut butter bar, and 2 ounces cinnamon chips. All eaten thoughtfully. The dark chocolate peanut butter bar was last, and I must say I was impressed that just that one quarter bar did the trick -- I stopped eating after that.

If only today wasn't my WI.

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MSLZZY 4/15/2010 7:28AM

    Very interesting! I'll have to try that! emoticon emoticon

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ALEXTHEHUNN 4/15/2010 7:27AM

    Fascinating. I'll have to try it.

Cheers,
Alex

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