Wednesday, February 10, 2010
A funny thing is happening to me. For all these years I have resisted various steps because I was not willing to DEPRIVE myself. Now some changes have been possible, with the incremental structure detailed in the Beck Diet Solution---because I committed to see it through, with God's help. Some surprising things are happening.
A couple weeks ago I made a choice to stop relating to food like a starving orphan. I began to tell myself over and over, "You are not a starving orphan. You have enough. You will have enough tomorrow." Gradually I was able to see more and more clearly the ineffective habits I have sustained. Eventually I decided it would be a healthy step to extinguish all of the starving-orphan behaviors.
I do realize that play-doh-ing the last crumb from every plate did not make me fat; picking up my son's candy wrapper and looking for fragments did not make me fat; licking every tool I used after cooking a meal did not make me fat; asking anyone with my same DNA (or my same zip code?) for a bite of their food did not make me fat; overdoing it on free samples did not make me fat. But the mindset that compelled those scrabbling behaviors made me fat and has kept me fat all these years. Somehow the Beck disciplines have helped me see how I operate. Sobering and embarrassing. But so hopeful, because I am tasting the freedom of a new relationship to food.
Starving Orphan says, "It's good to have more and more."
Freelady says, "What I planned to eat today is enough."
Starving Orphan says, "There's a bit of available food. Eat it!"
Freelady says, "I already ate what I need."
Starving Orphan says, "That looks so good. Sigh. I really want some of that."
Freelady says, "I don't need that. I have enough."
Starving Orphan says, "Here's free food. Get a lot." Freelady says, "I want to be thin. Eating this won't help me."
So here's the funny thing. As I give up these greedy BEHAVIORS, the desperate grasping feeling towards food, more food, a lot of food, lessens noticeably. And the thing I am marvelling over, with thanks to my Creator, is that I am actually noticing more and enjoying more the genuine blessings of my life. I had no inkling how much my attitude toward food had preoccupied me.
These days I have more clarity about many other small pleasures and positives around me. I am catching my daughters' smile more, really feeling the warmth of my son's hug, savoring my husband's serenity, basking in the warmth of the quilts when I turn over in the wee hours. I am giving thanks for a phone call from my sister, seeing a friend at the store, the hug of my snug sneakers, the satisfying coolness of a crochet hook, the cheerful chirp of a squirrel. Plus I'm noticing how good my planned food tastes!
For decades I've had plenty of information about healthy eating. But whenever I contemplated changing how I handled food, I pictured a bleak, sterile existence, stoically munching something as appealing as Purina Cat Chow, resigned to pleasure-less days of rigid tedium. I had no clue how out-of-proportion my thinking was.
I have been a happy person with a life full of variety and spiritual meaning; how could I have believed food so pivotal? It was certainly not rational. I want to keep growing into more sensible notions about food.
I was so worried about missing out on food. In reality, by over-concern about food, I was missing out on so much else.
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
I do know several people who have a normal perspective on food.
My friend was pumping gasoline. I nodded toward the adjacent convenience store as I commented with a chuckle, "I'm not allowed to go in there."
[This is because while I'm in food rehab, I've found it helpful to create a few "rules," just for myself, to aid in carrying out the NO CHOICE commitment of the Beck Diet Solution. I know my weaknesses.]
My friend said, "Well, wouldn't it be perfectly fine for you to go in there, as long as you just didn't buy anything you shouldn't?"
Like I said, some people have a normal relationship with food!
Monday, February 08, 2010
Recently I have been weighing on Wednesday and Sunday. I like the mnemonic of "weigh-in Wednesday," and Sunday seems like a reasonable addition. I don't want to weigh more frequently than that, because seeing daily fluctuations on the scale doesn't seem conducive to keeping myself steadily on track.
In 2009 I saw a few intervals of quick loss and I also saw multi-week plateaus. I am grateful to God that I stayed on course: progressively cleaning up my food choices, normalizing my portions, increasing my exercise, and strength training about once a week. Over the year I lost 35 pounds, and that as a lump sum is the biggest encouragement to me now. I know if I keep going and am reasonably consistent like I was last year, I can lose 35 pounds again this year.
The new factor is I've bumped up my level of commitment, specifically to complete the assignments in The Beck Diet Solution. I set specific goals, including daily exercise, daily food tracking, and staying accountable on the Beck Team. So I'm very hopeful I can lose a bit more than 35 pounds this year. But I'm going to stay on track, whether I see the scale move fast or not.
I'm getting more comfortable with the reality that my eating program needs to look about the same in 2011, and in 2012, and in 2013 . . . .
Sunday, February 07, 2010
Slowly I am learning to do this. I am gaining a better sense of perspective.
Paul the Apostle had a first-century Plog---I'm thinking it would have been a papyrus-log instead of a web-log! Writing to friends in the city of Philippi, Paul said, " . . . one thing I do: FORGETTING WHAT LIES BEHIND AND REACHING FORWARD TO WHAT LIES AHEAD, I PRESS ON toward the GOAL for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."
Pondering his situation has heartened me when I've blown something so profoundly that I feel like quitting. This man had a violent past and a longstanding stubbornness toward God. Yet Paul was fully pardoned . . . atonement purchased on his behalf by Jesus Christ. Subsequently PAUL'S BEHAVIOR REFLECTED THAT TRUTH!
If anyone had reason to wallow in the failures of the past, it would be Paul. But he put it behind him. He had to start again THIS MOMENT. He looked FORWARD to PRESS ON. Certainly he was speaking of an ultimate goal, the final weigh-in so to speak, when once again his confidence would rest in the perfection of Christ Jesus chalked up to his credit.
But the principle is a valid application to the smaller things also . . . my smaller goals, like sticking to my eating plan today and getting moving to do that workout when I'm just dragging. Scripture says forget my failures, reach forward to the next choice, press on for the goal.
Quote is from the New Testament, The Epistle of Paul to the Philippians, chapter 3, verses 13 & 14.
Saturday, February 06, 2010
Life will be much easier if every time I am tempted, I confidently say to myself, NO CHOICE! I am absolutely not going to give in!
Giving myself at least partial credit allows me to regroup, start fresh, and stay on track with my eating plan.
I will eat slowly. I will notice every bite. I will stop when my planned food is gone. I will refrain from taking seconds.
I can squarely face each mistake and devise ways to avoid that in the future.
I am a strong person. I can deal with negative emotions without emotional eating. It only makes my situation worse.
Unplanned food is such brief enjoyment, and then later I always wish I could get my calories back!
It's more important to me to lose weight than to have that tempting food. If I eat that, I'll get momentary pleasure, but afterwards I'll feel worse. It's not worth it.
Sticking to my eating plan is worth it.
When I slip, it's a temporary mistake, not a sign to give up. Dieting has many natural ups and downs.
Dieting gets hard. This happens to everyone. I expect these rough patches. I can persevere and get through these temporary difficulties.
I can stick to my eating plan no matter what is going on in my life.
I am a strong person. I can tolerate my negative feelings. I will not use food to medicate myself.
I can learn to diet successfully, just as I once learned to drive a car or use a computer.
Thin people don't rely on food to comfort themselves. They do other things when they are upset.
I haven't "totally blown" my diet. If I get right back on it, I will likely gain, at most, half apound. This is not a major setback. I can start again right this moment.
Father in heaven, thank You for creating me and for filling the earth with good food. Thank you for this food I'm about to eat. I choose to be grateful and content. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.
Get An Email Alert Each Time FREELADY Posts