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Living A Succesful Life

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I created this as a vehicle for some training I am preparing to do for one of my clients. You may share but with my permission.

Seven Steps for A Successful Life

1. Take one hundred percent responsibility for your life and your actions.

2. Make sure you communicate clearly what it is you want in all circumstances.

3. You wonít be respected until you learn to respect.

4. If you donít believe itís going to work, why should anyone else?

5. If you donít believe in you, why should anyone else?

6. The ďvery bestĒ is where we should begin a journey, not end it!

7. When you have balance in your life you have a better chance of reaching your goals and objectives.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBIE1414 5/4/2011 8:53AM

    Awesome blog:)

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SHELLEY81 5/3/2011 7:58AM

    Fabulous!

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KIN59VARA 5/3/2011 7:13AM

    Great advice

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JUKEBOX2 4/17/2011 8:15PM

    Excellent ... thank you!

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JENN03275 4/16/2011 10:30AM

    This is such a great blog! I try and live by these standards every day. Though there are days that I do stumble and feel as though I am a sinking ship. Thank you for these wonderful words to live by.

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LILOATS 4/15/2011 1:14PM

    Great List to Live by. Thanks for sharing.

TONI

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NOMORESTALLING 4/15/2011 9:29AM

    John,
these are absolutely positive links to success. Thank you so much for posting these. Would you do the team the honour of sharing it with them?
Create a new topic and post them for all to see. We all need these in our life!
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HVILLECAT 4/15/2011 6:40AM

    Fantastic post. Thanks

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WSPDAVE 4/15/2011 1:00AM

    Fabulous list, thanks for creating it.

Big Dave

We're In It For The Finish

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LYNMEINDERS 4/13/2011 7:27PM

    Awesome ...thankyou so much for this

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THOMS1 4/13/2011 9:22AM

    Great Post and I thank you. emoticon

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MARCYNA 4/13/2011 9:01AM

    Wow, great...I'm still looking for balance, thanks for reminding me emoticon

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WALKNLOVE 4/13/2011 7:55AM

    Great words from a great guy! :) Thanks for sharing your insight! Your client will appreciate it! (As do we! ) Have a great day John!

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NASFKAB 4/13/2011 12:26AM

  You are so tight thanks for sharing these tips

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MELLYBEANS0919 4/12/2011 9:44PM

    Right on.

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JUNEAU2010 4/12/2011 9:38PM

    I really like this!
I need to read it over and over for a while!

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2011DIET4ME 4/12/2011 9:25PM

    Wow - excellent blog - - if you don't mind - I'll print it as a reminder to myself - THANK YOU!!!! emoticon

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HDHAWK 4/12/2011 9:22PM

    Excellent!

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DUTCHIEKIWI 4/12/2011 7:52PM

    Thanks John, copy, print and on the fridge!! :0)

xoxox

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FROGGERHKC 4/12/2011 6:50PM

    Great post!!
emoticon emoticon

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GOANNA2 4/12/2011 5:55PM

    You are so right.
Thanks for posting emoticon

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MORTICIAADDAMS 4/12/2011 5:32PM

    Thanks. I will use it for my teams.

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SILLYHP1953 4/12/2011 4:19PM

    Thank you! I will share this with my mind and heart and soul and I think I have your permission for that!!
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DDOORN 4/12/2011 1:36PM

    All critical points...but for me BALANCE between myself and others...THAT is the cutting edge for myself!

Don

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CARTOONB 4/12/2011 12:41PM

    I especially like #1.

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GEEMAWEST 4/12/2011 12:38PM

    emoticon

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KAZINMICH 4/12/2011 11:59AM

    Excellent! I got tired of the doctors trying to find a reason, which encouraged me to just eat whatever as long as I stayed in a certain range. Well, since adopting the same steps you outlined, I'm much happier, more motivated, and losing weight. The past 2 weeks have been very difficult and I haven't been making time to exercise, and I haven't been eating as properly as I want to. Thank you for making me take ownership of myself and my life again. Great timing! :) Happy Day to you!

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NJMATTICE 4/12/2011 11:48AM

    All good advice. I'm missing something about make meaningful connections with your fellow human beings and don't forget to laugh a lot. Be joyful in all you do.

Living joyfully is living successfully in my book.

Have a joy-filled Tuesday, John and keep doing what your doing.

Love,
Nancy

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KKINNEA 4/12/2011 10:57AM

    These are great steps!

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LIZABETT 4/12/2011 10:00AM

    I especially like the 1st Step, John. Takes the blame off everyone and everything else and places it exactly where it belongs. The others are good, but it starts with the first one. emoticon

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FREECLOUD 4/12/2011 9:57AM

    I especially appreciate #7. It usually takes a lot of adjustment on our part to reach that balance, but the rewards are so worth the journey. That's something to you can't *explain* to someone - they have to experience it to appreciate it.

Love your blogs!

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IMIN2GENES 4/12/2011 9:32AM

    Great words to live by! Thanks for sharing.
Chris

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Messy Art

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Joan and I were cleaning out a closet a few weeks ago when we ran across some ďkid art.Ē We have six, all grown now, four boys and two girls, ages twenty four through thirty five. In a large plastic tub we found a bunch of memories. Joan sorted it and was going to give some of it to them on their next visit. A couple of them scrunched their faces and made remarks like ďGosh, I never colored in the lines,Ē or ďBoy I sure was a messy painter!Ē Itís funny in a way. I donít think Joan and I ever saw it that way. Instead of messy art we saw priceless treasure and I would hazard a guess that when their kids are old enough they will see the same thing.

I bring this up because as I looked at their gifts and their own reaction to them many years later; I thought about how I do the same thing with myself. People say all sorts of wonderful things about me, compliment me, shower me with praise and I only see the muffin top (Yes, ladies, men have muffin tops also!) when I look in the mirror. Where you see a warm smile, I see the need for a beard and moustache trim. You applaud me for my courage for battling through injury and disappointment, tell me I inspire you and I only see a wimp who could be doing more and wonders why anyone listens to anything he says.

As I was dressing this morning it dawned on me that in the eighteen months or so I have been part of this experience, no one has ever been critical of how I look, or whether I lost or gained weight on a given week. No one has ever questioned my commitment when I havenít reached a goal. Where I have hung my head at times I was only greeted by big hugs when I raised my eyes. Where I felt like a failure when I couldnít reach a goal, all I saw where thumbs up emoticons and words of encouragement. No one ever commented that I was coloring outside the lines!!! Oh, donít get me wrong. Iíve received plenty of well-deserved advice on how to break the mold of my own self defeat or tendency to be a people pleaser. It has always been given privately and with encouragement. Itís always been an offer to help not hurt.

Other folks donít see the messy art work, they just see the precious package it came wrapped in. It would do me well to look at myself the same way. There are smudges, there are rips and wrinkles, but splashed on the canvas of my life there is this priceless and precious beauty no one but I can attain.

The same holds true for you. It really does. Look at yourself the way I see you and imagine this really big smile of love and gratitude on my face.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARCYNA 4/14/2011 1:37PM

    Yes. Yes. Even our clumsiest attempts for doing good are precious in the Lord's Eyes!!!!
You go, boy emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/14/2011 1:38:59 PM

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LYNMEINDERS 4/13/2011 7:25PM

    Amen & A,men to this blog.....

I do the same thing with myself....I don't see in the mirror the same person that all my students see or that someone else sees....it is fascinating that we have that in us and it is so so hard to eradicate......
Maybe I need to change the mirror I look in....
the one I looked in yesterday when i bought a new top had me looking awesome, however my one in the same top, didn't have me looking so awesome this morning......
Fascinating...

thankyou for allowing me to see this.....am going to mwork on changing this....

Blessings...

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CHILOVERINAZ 4/13/2011 7:02PM

    My daughter is 23 and I still have a box of her artwork in my closet, I would like to think people see me the same why I see her art (mostly beautiful and very special) I'm struggling with a very large weight gain in a very short period of time, I am having a hard time finding anything to like about myself This blog helped a little it made me smile and find 1 good quality for today :)

Thank you

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DAWNEBLUNDA 4/12/2011 10:36PM

    The messy art of my 3 year old now graces the walls where the messy art of my now 20 year old used to hang. It is beautiful now as it was then. When my 20 year old moved out, we went through boxes of the priceless treasures I had saved. It was bittersweet.

And, again, you have a way of looking inside that I envy. I never thought of how to apply the majesty I see in those paintings, imperfect as they are, to myself.

Thank you...please don't stop writing. I need your insight to gain my own!

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DAD2GETFIT 4/12/2011 8:50PM

    Great blog. emoticon

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TRISHA603 4/12/2011 7:13PM

    Thanks for sucha lovely and uplifting blog today...indeed it is time to recognize the positives and not just focus on what's wrong with us....I needed to be reminded of that today!! emoticon

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MORTICIAADDAMS 4/12/2011 5:36PM

    It's a man thing, John. LOL. My hubby has it. My dad has it. Dad was a contractor and could walk into a palace, look around, and the first thing he would say....................."The molding is off an 1/16 of an inch around that window." LOL.

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SILLYHP1953 4/12/2011 3:58PM

    I went through a lot of my kid's artwork a few months ago, and had the same reaction as yours - priceless treasures. And yes, I am very critical of myself. Interesting....

Again, more food for thought/reflection.
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_AIYANNA_ 4/12/2011 2:24PM

    Thank you for another beautiful blog, John. I was really moved to tears by this :) It saddens me at times when I think that most of my Spark friends whom I'd really love to meet in person live half-way round the world from me :(

Take good care of yourself, my dear friend.

Elen xxx

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CHAITEAKITTY40 4/12/2011 2:10PM

    Thank you so much! This touched me where I am right now. Needed that message today.
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DDOORN 4/12/2011 1:35PM

    Another gem! Yes, to step aside and look at ourselves with as much love and acceptance as we offer others...what a challenge for myself as well!

Don

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MOMMYBYCHOICE 4/12/2011 12:59PM

    I love messy art,.......

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ANEPANALIPTI 4/12/2011 12:45PM

    this is the most beautiful blog ive ever read.

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GEEMAWEST 4/12/2011 12:41PM

    Good point, John. Very good point.

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THEMIGHTYLILLIE 4/12/2011 12:38PM

    Darn straight!!! Isn't it amazing how much of a kindred spirit you feel IMMEDIATELY for people on here?

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GIRANIMAL 4/12/2011 12:38PM

    Wow, I just had the conversation with a friend yesterday! I feel like I will have to work hard at accepting compliments for the rest of my life -- but it's OK, I'm worth it. emoticon

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KAZINMICH 4/12/2011 12:30PM

    Excellent blog with a great truth. The only way I was able to start accepting compliments without putting myself down, or beating myself up was to only allow myself to say, "thank you". That was my only response allowed. After a while the berating myself or thinking people are crazy started going away, and I started feeling proud and embracing myself. I know I'm still overweight, but I am changing, and I am learning and growing (emotionally/mentally while shrinking. lol). It's good.

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KKINNEA 4/12/2011 11:05AM

    These thoughts are great - so helpful for when we get down on ourselves.

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TRIPLE_EMME 4/12/2011 10:36AM

    emoticon

Three cheers to coloring out of the lines and messy art work!!!

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MISSROCKABILLY 4/12/2011 10:21AM

    Love this, John. Such a true and important message, for all of us.

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CORKY982 4/12/2011 9:55AM

  John - you are awesome.

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GRAMLORI 4/12/2011 9:53AM

    Isn't it even more awesome that God sees US that way! It's been said many a time....you can't love others till you love yourself! Very good illustration, John.....I will remember it! Thanks, and have a very BLESSED tuesday!!

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IMIN2GENES 4/12/2011 9:31AM

    Priceless words, John. Thank you!
Chris
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LADYLAUGHS247 4/12/2011 9:28AM

  I am my own masterpeice. But keep in mind that it's a work in progress. emoticon

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MEGA_MILES 4/12/2011 9:14AM

    Fabulously insightful. emoticon emoticon

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46SHADOW 4/12/2011 9:01AM

    This rings so true. Thanks for sharing.

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LINDSEYINAZ 4/12/2011 8:55AM

    What beautiful words!!

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TIME4AFITME 4/12/2011 8:45AM

    Your blogs always help keep me trying to reach my goal even though I am not doing well. Thank you emoticon

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AMYGIRL1972 4/12/2011 8:36AM

    Oh my goodness...that is so true. Thankyou...

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MIZZSB 4/12/2011 8:13AM

    thanks John.. that so sweet ....

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HONORINGGOD 4/12/2011 7:53AM

    emoticon

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Some Days

Monday, April 11, 2011

Some days, itís hard to get myself in the right frame of mind. Some days I donít want to log my food or take the extra fifteen minutes to prepare something good to eat rather than stop for fast food or hit a vending machine somewhere. Oh, I know, itís really cool to SAY all the right things, post all the ďthumbs upĒ emoticons but Good Lord some days it just doesnít seem worth the effort. Some days, despite all my hard work and positive thoughts I feel like a blimp in a parade and wonder if my clothes will ever fit right!! I wish I could go to bed some days and wake up with an email waiting for me that says ďItís over, you made it.Ē

What keeps me going?

In the past week or so I have experienced this tremendous outpouring of love, support and friendship via this Spark community. The response to three blogs I wrote last week, the Spark Mails, friend additions and Spark Goodies touched me so very deeply. The recovering people pleaser in me started to have an anxiety attack over not being able to respond to each and every person who took the time to share themselves and their thought with me. I mean, LOL, what if you didnít like me anymore? Please know I am very grateful. It answers the solitary question above.

If you sit here today reading this you are what keeps me going. Your blood, sweat and tears, your devotion, your triumphs Ė all of it Ė is my main source of motivation each and every day. I cheer with each victory you have and I shed a bit of tear along with you when you have a setback. I donít think you realize how important your role is in my journey. I have known some of you for over a year and consider you as close to me as my family. Some of you are new friends and OMG, isnít it exciting to meet new people and learn new things. In a word I am blessed.

I am learning life is about balance. A key part of balance is gratitude. The more thankful I am the more I find I have to be thankful for and please realize that you are part of the reason that thankfulness grows each and every day. So when you have one of those ďsome daysĒ scroll through your friend feed, read a blog, send a Goodie, find some way to play a part in another Sparkers life, just as you have in mine and it will keep you going.

I promise!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CUDDLYPOLARBEAR 4/20/2011 5:54PM

    Great post thanks for sharing

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MCHILSTR 4/18/2011 10:38AM

  You are making a big difference in my weight loss journey - thank you! emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/18/2011 10:39:47 AM

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LYNMEINDERS 4/13/2011 7:20PM

    You are superb...you have such insight and wisdom to what you write that helps all of us....how can it Not????/

I have someone I am jouenwyingb with where I live aho is a peopole pleaser and slowly slowly she is learning new keys.....

Blessings.....

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MOMMYBYCHOICE 4/12/2011 12:59PM

    keep bloggin'

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JONATION 4/12/2011 8:18AM

    I'll be thinking about you while on the road tonight.

Way to go! J

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MIZZSB 4/12/2011 2:30AM

    i dont know how you do it John but everytime you write a blog its like you write down my feelings and thougts for that day...

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MAMAANGE 4/11/2011 10:24PM

    You are reading my mind! Thanks so much for your blog.

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CARTOONB 4/11/2011 10:11PM

    We were supposed to give you Goodies?!?! Dang it! I missed the memo! emoticon

You deserve everything you got! And I mean that in a good way. emoticon

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CANNIE50 4/11/2011 10:11PM

    "A key part of balance is gratitude." Amen to this - what a profound (and profoundly true) statement. PS You, and your wonderful blogs, are on my gratitude list. emoticon emoticon

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DUTCHIEKIWI 4/11/2011 9:46PM

    For better and for worse, in sickness and health... I'll be here, and I'll be counting on you too!

xoxox

Dutchie

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SPARKLISE 4/11/2011 9:32PM

    you're right! Somedays it just doesn't seem worth to do the effort. But what else are we to do? Go back? Hope not. We need your honesty in our lives. Thanks. emoticon emoticon

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MKPRINCESS007 4/11/2011 7:52PM

    Without sadness or challenges, we would never truly know happiness.

That's it John!

Love the way you can share yourself sooooooooo eloquently.

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JILL313 4/11/2011 7:48PM

    You sound like such a wonderful and caring friend and I know that's why everyone really rallys around you and supports your Healthy Journey. I say you've come a long way and all are so pleased and happy for you! Keep up the good work!!

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GEEMAWEST 4/11/2011 6:51PM

    emoticon emoticon

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BULGEBATTLER 4/11/2011 5:52PM

  I ponder the gray days and wonder? Would the good days seem as good if it weren't for the comparison and contrast of the days that aren't so good? Maybe that's part of the richness of life. It also demonstrates that I can handle whatever life throws at me.

Once again I find your blogs thought provoking which contributes very much to my life's tapestry.

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GOANNA2 4/11/2011 5:14PM

    My friends also are the ones that keep me on Spark.
Thanks for a great blog. emoticon

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DOLLIE6 4/11/2011 4:25PM

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It helps to read others are going through the same thing but they preserver so shall we all. We are linked and we must help each other keep from breaking the chain. Good for you John keep strong.

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FREE2LIVE311 4/11/2011 3:32PM

  Thanks John for being so honest, even when it hurts. I am fairly new here and you have encouraged and inspired me so much already. Thank You!!!

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TRIPLE_EMME 4/11/2011 3:19PM

    emoticon

I wish you a fantastic week, my friend!

Love,
Mel

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AMAJORXX 4/11/2011 3:16PM

    Great blog!

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CSERF09 4/11/2011 2:28PM

    Again another good blog. I am in the middle of struggling with the food logging, but keep telling myself that what I've done in the past is ok and that tomorrow is another new day. I find the small things that I've managed to do and keep up with to be proud of (water intake and no pop for starters). I agree with you about finding strength, motivation and support among the blogs, spark teams, and friends here on spark people.

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SMILEYBEE 4/11/2011 2:02PM

    You are a jewel! This makes me think of that Roberta Flack hit about "telling my whole life with his words" ... very cool! Thanks for your encouraging words!

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REJ7777 4/11/2011 1:33PM

    emoticon emoticon

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RIKKI572 4/11/2011 12:48PM

    Wonderfully said. Wishing you a great week!!

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SMOCKON 4/11/2011 11:38AM

    You'd think I would be jealous when my SparkFriends do well, but it's entirely the opposite. We never seem to be down on the same days. When I feel lost and a little hopeless, reading other people's blogs and responding to their status updates helps me get back on track. So thanks for sharing whatever is on your mind and going on with you, John.

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SILLYHP1953 4/11/2011 11:38AM

    You are so very, very right...and I sure have those days you talked about, too. My friends on here are what keeps me coming back and trying again and again when I don't feel like it.
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NAMAARI 4/11/2011 11:36AM

    Well blogged.

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THEMIGHTYLILLIE 4/11/2011 11:23AM

    I feel the exact same way....having people to motivate and people you can look to FOR motivation changes our journey one that isn't only about us. There is something about holding someone else's hand through their struggle that gives us the ability to hold our own hand through our struggle.

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WORKINGSTIFF 4/11/2011 11:22AM

    A big thumbs up to you today John!

emoticon

Thank you for reminding us that:
1. Not everyone feels the overwhelming desire to jump out of bed and do what needs to be done. We're all human.
2. That without each other, some days it's hard. But that's why we're here-to lend each other a hand and a heart.
3. Gratitude is SOOOOO important!

Have a terrific week!

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LADYLAUGHS247 4/11/2011 11:01AM

  Thanks John. I just want you to know that you are truly appreciated. I wish I were as eloquent as you. Alas, it is not meant to be. But my comments show my appreciation and your blogs let me know you care. So thanks.

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GIRANIMAL 4/11/2011 10:57AM

    I've also been happily surprised to discover that support and motivation engender reciprocal relationships. Thank goodness for each other on those days when we need an extra boost!

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MEGA_MILES 4/11/2011 10:29AM

    The secret to happiness is to enjoy the journey. Yes it's challenging, but it's also fun. Have some fun today. emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/11/2011 10:30:20 AM

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MISSROCKABILLY 4/11/2011 9:58AM

    So, so true. Thank you, John, for posting this, and for just being you. I'm so happy to count you among my spark friends!

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GRAMLORI 4/11/2011 9:53AM

    You are so right! Starting my day with SP makes it more likely that I will stay on track.....so, most days, I do! Hang in there, John, we're with you!

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DDOORN 4/11/2011 9:52AM

    NOTHING compares to the boost from paying forward our SPARK!!

Very much agreed! :-)

Don

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HALFFAST 4/11/2011 9:49AM

    Another great post John! You always know exactly what to say, and how to say it :)

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LINDSEYINAZ 4/11/2011 9:34AM

    I agree that Spark is a major motivator for me as well. I also have an outpouring of support from my parents; my dad is tracking his food and exercising trying to lose weight as well. I haven't felt like giving up or going through the McDonald's drive-thru just yet, but I've definitely had days where I wasn't feeling very positive. It is hard to act super happy about this every day. But you're doing just awesome. I'm so glad I found your blog and you're my Spark Friend!

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PRINCESSNURSE 4/11/2011 9:01AM

    It's friends like you that make spark a great place!

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DMC10241 4/11/2011 9:00AM

    Great, great blog!

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MARYMO22 4/11/2011 8:32AM

    from one new friend - you're an inspiration and lets hope we continue to keep each other going

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WIGIME 4/11/2011 8:31AM

    John - Posting your blogs is enough to keep me happy. I always enjoy reading them and wish I had the same way with words.

You DON'T have to get back to me on this comment!

Have I great day and you are an inspiration to a lot of people (me included).

Thank you.

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 4/11/2011 8:27AM

    It's friends like YOU that make all the difference to US. That's why we're here, to motivate each other and stick with it till we all get that email :)

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RUNWITHMICHELE 4/11/2011 8:20AM

    Finding you and your blogs last week was like finding medicine and motivation. It was exactly what I needed.

So again, Thank you, for well, being YOU!

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JECKIE 4/11/2011 8:20AM

    Those "some days" are why I post the thumbs up and all that! :) "Fake it 'til ya make it", right?

Keep it up!

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NJMATTICE 4/11/2011 8:03AM

    Have a great Monday and a successful week. Thanks for your commitment.
Love,
Nancy

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HDHAWK 4/11/2011 8:03AM

    I always love your honesty John. I've had more of those days lately than I care to admit, but with your help and so many other spark friends I keep putting one foot in front of the other. Have a great week!

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IMIN2GENES 4/11/2011 7:56AM

    Thank you! I couldn't have said it any better myself. I share many of your sentiments and Spark really has made a huge difference for me as well.

So, I say we keep right on motivating each other!
Chris
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EDWINA172 4/11/2011 7:49AM

    WOW! Perfect timing on the blog. Today is one of those days for me. I just starting thinking, "I don't want to write in my food journal today." I was thinking of putting off my run today too. Thanks for the motivation my friend.

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HEALTHY4ME 4/11/2011 7:36AM

    I have to say you are what motivates me. I didn't bother to put in my breakfast as I don't know for sure how to count supper ( going to dads for fried .... fish) and who knows what else he can fry! LOL
Thanks and am so glad I found your blog cos now I have motivation when I need it!

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NASFKAB 4/11/2011 7:36AM

  Great blog as always thanks

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After Each Dying Comes A Resurection: Learning To Listen To Myself

Thursday, April 07, 2011

All you have to do is look at the trees blossom and the flowers bloom to know that for death there is the potential for resurrection, whether you have a faith belief or not. Itís no by coincidence that the feast of Easter usually falls during the height of natures rebirth.

A fellow Sparker asked me why it was I got ďstuckĒ for close to a whole year. I had my hands poised above my key board to answer, when it dawned on me that not only was that a very good question but one that required some thought before I answered.

Let me do a quick recap. I joined Spark in December of 2009. By May of 2010 I had lost roughly seventy one pounds. About that time I started my C25K training. About that time I showed my first gain, when I weighed in one week. In the vernacular of my kids ďI freaked.Ē OMG I had a gain. Iíll tell you I felt guilty, terrible and all that not so very cool stuff. Yup, I know, everyone has a gain, even the cool kids, lol. For the rest of the summer I swapped anywhere from six to eight pounds. As of January 1, 2011, I had lost sixty eight pounds. If you read my Spark page you will see I reset my weight ticker and why I did so.

So why did I get stuck? The answer is simple but painful to admit. I lost faith in me. I got too good, too quick and when I didnít lose one hundred pounds in ten months I got scared. I hadnít taken the time to get comfy with my success. John was used to minor success, not the big time. John had been over weight for some time and now not only was he losing weight but he was running!!! OMG!!! The first time I had a gain; it was as if that small voice inside of me said ďSee, I told you that you couldnít do this John!!!Ē I panicked. I began trying to do all sorts of things I really wasnít comfortable with Ė exercising way too much, which caused me to hurt myself in both October and December. When that didnít work I decided starving myself might help to get me going. I was grasping at straws. If you had suggested standing on my head in pair of gym shorts on the busiest corner in town during rush hour would have helped, I probably would have done it. I could go on and on but you get my point. In short I found myself on a diet. My confidence was in the basement. I was tense, frustrated and felt like I was walking around in a fog. I didnít quit, I didnít leave I did something worse ---- I didnít care. I drifted along and quite honestly if it werenít for my wife, who has been well equipped with a large piece of wood by which to hit me over the head with for thirty seven years, and a few very close Spark friends I would have given up entirely.

It dawned on me one morning that I had panicked and stopped listening to the one person who knows best about me ----- ME. When I panicked I began to try everything everyone else was doing and I stopped listening to my body. Now, itís not that I didnít receive some awfully good advice at times; itís just that some of it wasnít tailored for me. Imagine knocking on your neighborís door and asking to borrow clothes for a special occasion. Chances are they are not going to fit.
I am learning to listen to my body and to support and supply it with what it needs. I am learning to do that in a really healthy way. I am learning to balance my body, my mind and my spirit so that they can work in harmony with each other. I am becoming friends with myself. Like the buds on the trees I see each morning I am starting to see progress and my confidence in what is right for me is returning. I wonít bore you with the detail. If youíd like to know specifics shoot me a Spark Mail and Iíll share more.

Advice for ya? Sure, why not, LOL. Listen to yourself, your soul and your body and in the end truely believe that death is followed by resurrection.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TABIKATZZ 4/15/2011 3:15PM

    Great post and so very true!

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HARLOW10 4/13/2011 7:43PM

    Great post!

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MCHILSTR 4/12/2011 9:55AM

  Wonderful, Wise Words the "W" trifecta!

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CSERF09 4/12/2011 9:48AM

    Thanks for sharing! I'm going to take your last line and save it to read frequently. It says so much.

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WOLFKITTY 4/11/2011 12:45PM

    I find that listening to yourself and your body is integral to success!
Way to go!

Jocelyn

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CELIASYEAR 4/11/2011 12:13PM

    Amen brother! We are either our own best friend or worst enemy .... *sigh*

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PDLARR 4/11/2011 11:12AM

  I believe you have written what many of have done and you have inspired us to keep going. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.

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MTODRYK 4/11/2011 10:18AM

    This was great

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DDOORN 4/11/2011 9:51AM

    I know I (and I believe MANY who struggle with weight) have come to depend on so MANY external cues that one of the last and most difficult skills to develop is exactly as you describe: to "listen to yourself, your soul and your body"...such a tough thing to do after a lifetime of disengaging from ourselves the way one almost HAS to do in order to become morbidly obese!

Don

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CAMSMOM918 4/11/2011 8:45AM

    I am finally *listening* to my body and not blaming it. That's a big one for me . . . I work so hard, don't see results I should be seeing and beat myself up over it. Now I am finding there are may actually be other reasons for my "failure" and this is very hard for me to wrap my brain around.

Off to the doctor today to find more pieces to my puzzle.

Thanks!
Angela>

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2MCHCHKLIT 4/11/2011 1:11AM

    Oh. my goodness. This made me see what I have done to myself. As soon as people started noticing that I had lost weight, it triggered some strange reaction in me, causing me to gain it back and more. I definitely see myself in that line about the small voice inside saying, "See, I told you that you couldn't do this." I am still trying to find myself and the power to overcome that inner voice. This blog helps me. Thanks!

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LUCKYONE60 4/10/2011 11:27PM

    Ooooo, this strikes a cord with me for sure. Gonna have to let that one percolate for a while...Thanks for continuing to inspire us.

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BLUSTAR 4/10/2011 9:14PM

    keep up the great work..
Glenda

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TIME4AFITME 4/10/2011 8:38PM

    very motivating!

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BULGEBATTLER 4/10/2011 11:37AM

  Interesting blog. I admire your ability to be able to deal with yourself. I very much appreciate SP but have found that I get distracted by the many excellent ideas I find there but that causes me to lose sight of what works for me. As a result, I am not consistent in my efforts - firing off in all directions upon reading about something that really works for someone else. Like you, I need to learn about me - mind, body and spirit and build on that as the foundation, using info from others to compliment my health and wellness project, not just blindly following others erratically.

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46SHADOW 4/10/2011 9:06AM

    Very motivating1 Great blogs.

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FLUFFYFLOUNDER 4/10/2011 5:06AM

    emoticon blog!! Sometimes we forget to listen to our own good common sense..

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PAMMORSE 4/10/2011 5:00AM

    thank you! emoticon

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DBFBILLY 4/9/2011 11:19PM

    I can sooo relate to this blog..I totally understand where you are coming from...and I too am learning to listen to MYSELF and stand up for myself..

I'm adding you as a friend emoticon

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CAREN_BLUEJEANS 4/9/2011 11:06PM

    You are wonderful! I laughed when I read about standing on your head! Because I would too! LOL

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SWEETMOMMY41 4/9/2011 11:05PM

  thanks for such an inspiring blog! have a terrific day!

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KRISTIARLINE 4/9/2011 10:47PM

    My goodness, that honesty. None of us like to truly look at ourselves in the mirror, but it is good to that every so often. Obesity thrives on denial, health must thrive on truth. Thank you for sharing.

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DOTTIEJANE1 4/9/2011 10:17PM

    Keep the faith i have in you .YOU are emoticon

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TRI_BABE 4/9/2011 9:59PM

    Keep on keepin' on. It's big to admit things and helps us move to the next level. Nice post. emoticon

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RUN2BEFREE 4/9/2011 9:02PM

    What an inspiring blog! Thanks for sharing your story!

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JULIACK 4/9/2011 5:37PM

    Your blog has inspired me. Thank you.

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TAKINBACKMYBODY 4/9/2011 5:12PM

    Enjoyed your blog - that is really great advice - listen to your body - what a concept!!! I've had similar struggles and frustrations - thanks for sharing!

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JPRICE217 4/9/2011 4:06PM

    I can relate I have had a gain and can not get motivated again Thank you for this blog.

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EMTFF376 4/9/2011 2:55PM

    Hey sparkpal, have faith in you. I do. :)

Virtual bear hug... like the one at CJs.
Janette

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50PLUSBABY 4/9/2011 2:55PM

  I think you were in my bathroom this morning when I got on the scale and it showed a gain lol. I relate to that and thank you for sharing your struggles and motivating us to keep on going.

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JNPMUDDIN 4/9/2011 2:00PM

    I read, I heard, I listened but then the questions come...what do ya do when for someone reason your body stops talkin to ya??? What do ya do when your insides are screamin' let me out for ya know what is on the outside doesn't match your insides.

I fear that even with the tiny weight I have lost I am still stuck and can't get over the hump.

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EMMAANDBRODY 4/9/2011 1:19PM

    I also have been stuck for the last month or so. I can feel myself sliding. Thanks for your post and motivation. I can do this.
emoticon emoticon

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CYNTHIAMEL12 4/9/2011 12:19PM

  I completely understand losing faith in yourself. I feel like I am struggling with that myself. I have a hard time sticking to things because I don't honestly believe that I can do it. I tell myself over and over again that I can take my life back, but I don't believe myself. I'm inspired by your ability to push through, hopefully in the near future I will be sharing a similar story. Keep it up!

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ALLISON145 4/9/2011 11:39AM

    I can really relate, John. I had lost almost 40 pounds last summer (finally got below 200!) and something just snapped when I had a small gain. Suddenly I was playing up and down with the same 10 pounds, and that lasted for 6 months. Looking back, I really feel like I needed to give myself that time to come to grips with the changes I'd made so far and gear up for the changes yet to come. I'm back on track now, and hoping I can make it another 40 pounds before I get sidelined again... but even if I don't, I'll know now what's happening and try to be more patient and kind to myself while it's happening. We tend to be so incredibly mean to ourselves when we don't meet our own expectations, don't we?

-Allison

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PUGLOVER1999 4/9/2011 10:39AM

    I agree! I enjoy your blogs! :)

Another truth I have recently been reminded of is that pride goes before a fall! I've gotten up and am pressing on with more humility. emoticon emoticon

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SLIMTHICK2 4/9/2011 10:29AM

    I have been stuck for the last couple of months and this blog has really encouraged me. Thanks for posting. emoticon

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KELLY40222 4/9/2011 10:25AM

    Thank you for sharing another wonderful blog!

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REDEYEMOM 4/9/2011 8:21AM

    This was a great post. Thanks for sharing!

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SUZWARNR 4/9/2011 7:12AM

    Something similar happened to me. I lost 96 pounds, got injured while exercising and lost my everything. I stopped exercising, stopped eating right and gained 10 pounds. I went up and down those 10 pounds for the next year. I was doing better last summer, but not well enough. Last fall, I cracked down, joined a gym, got a personal trainer, lost the 10 pounds and some more. I gained confidence, gym friends and a sense of peace within myself. I could not be happier! Good for you on coming back and doing what you need to do!

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MRSSCHENCK 4/9/2011 6:43AM

    Thanks for your blog. Very inspiring. I look forward to reading them. p.s.- your wife sounds like a lady after my own heart. I have a similar piece of wood for my husband. It's all splinters now, though! emoticon

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WADHA1973 4/9/2011 5:04AM

  thanx

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TNANCE3 4/8/2011 10:54PM

    I am new to your blogs, but I am getting so much out of them! Thank you for being an inspiration to those of us who are starting out (3 wks in) and have 80 pounds to lose. I really appreciate the kick in the back side from this one and your 4/4 blog. You are such a motivator! emoticon emoticon

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CANDOK1260 4/8/2011 10:40PM

    Listen to yourself, your soul and your body and in the end truly believe that death is followed by resurrection. Great advice thanks


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DAD2GETFIT 4/8/2011 9:41PM

    I worry about the same thing myself. I certainly have not been in the program that long and I haven't lost much yet, but the thought of losing momentum is a little scary. Personal successes like yours are what keeps me going during tough times. emoticon

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LISA01605 4/8/2011 1:36PM

    I completely agree. I lost 60 pounds and put 20 of it back on in 2009 and 20 back on in 2010. I had times when I would maintain and then others when I stopped caring and gained big. I was trying to lose weight the "right" way. The problem was I was getting overloaded with "plans" and lost track of what works for me. There is so much weight loss advice out there from professionals and I was trying to listen to them all simultaneously or try this plan one week and that the next, never giving anything enough time to take hold and show results. I finally decided I have to do what works for me. Maybe I'll blaze a new path and write a book as a weight loss professional (kidding, about the book part). For the past week I have been "all in" and I feel great. I am going back to basics and doing what I know works for me.

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TRANSFORMWE 4/8/2011 12:38PM

    Thanks for this, John. I really admire your insight. Much of what you write sounds like it could be written by me (well, except that I've plateaued way before losing 70 lbs, LOL). I especially like your realization that you were on "a diet" when you were in the grasping at straws phase. Good for you at re-learning to listen to your body.
Blessings!
Amy

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DGILBRIDE1949 4/8/2011 12:22PM

    Good blog! Thanks!

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SUNLIGHT3 4/8/2011 10:31AM

    I read 1cor. 6:19,20
I became humble if God should so honor me with a loss. Yes my faith knows now God honored me as I moved through out my day I was not hungry and I never worried how much I was eating I knew God had taken control of my life I am only the vessel of his grace and mercy. My body is the temple of the Holy Ghost and what I eat or drink is to be done to the glory of God. Yes I died yesterday to self and what I could do and was raised a new creature in Christ.

What an inspiration John love your writing.

Listen to yourself, your soul and your body and in the end truly believe that death is followed by resurrection.

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PATTILYNN224 4/8/2011 9:32AM

    Hey thanks for that! As I notice the resurrection of life coming with the spring in the buds on the trees and the tulips trying to pop their way up thru the last of the snow. I too am praying that I myself may rise up again this year and get back to being me - healthy and full of life.

Here's to Christ's resurrection and God's love for us! Happy Early Easter John and thank's again.

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MARVEEME 4/8/2011 8:36AM

    Resurrection or reinvention? I tend to give glory to God for the first, and he gives me what I need for the second.
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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Confessions of a Recovering People Pleaser and Moving Forward

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

I am a recovering people pleaser. I didnít know what that was until about a year ago. A Spark friend sent me a private comment and in a very gentle but firm way told me I sort of needed to get over my need to be accepted by everyone on the planet and start living my life with a joyful emphasis on what I can do to make this world a better place to live in. Well you can quite imagine, that having lived my life for other people for so long and wanting desperately to be accepted by the entire universe, this statement absolutely devastated me. I couldnít really get mad at her; I mean I wanted her to like me. What to do, what to do?

I will be this way until I close my eyes for the last time. Thatís not the question. The time for hand wringing has long past. I crave peopleís attention and their approval. I wonít get all Freudian on you here because I believe my past life as it relates to today and two dollars buys you a diet Mountain Dew. I want you to like me and if you donít I immediately think I did something terrible. I decided I canít spend my life dwelling on past mistakes. Oh, donít get me wrong, I still get these little twinges deep inside of me to be desperately accepted and I have to find myself pulling in the reins to do anything for anybody at any time. I have just learned to be judicious in who I commit to. I have, in a word, established boundaries in my life.

Without being dramatic it was a matter of life or death. When I felt rejected or even not accepted I turned to food. It gave me comfort. Yet as I got older and my activity level slowed and my metabolism began to get sluggish, the food I turned to in an effort to soothe my anxiety became an even worse enemy. I went from being overweight to obese, to morbidly obese. My blood work was all border line. I had some really difficult choices to make. I chose health and happiness. It is not easy. There are days I have to talk myself down off a ledge, but I am getting better.

I had a bit of a grin on my face as I write this next line because I thought here I am writing about approval but Iím going to tell you I didnít write this to seek approval. I write it because I believe there are only two kinds of people in this world, people who will admit they are fearful at times and people who wonít. Those who wonít, are simply deceiving themselves. I write the things I write, I share my soul with you not for support or approval but to let you see a ray of sun light in a day that may otherwise be dreary. I write so you know there is another person out here who struggles but keeps coming back for more each and every day.

Yeah, Iím a people pleaser. Always have been, always will be, but I am learning to turn that into something that helps other people feel better about themselves.

Four things allow me to find balance:

I am who I hang around with
I am worth all the effort I put forth to be successful.
I deserve to be successful
I am what I believe I am.

It is my mantra. It is how I live and I share it with you in the hope you find some grace through it.

So I gotta ask youÖÖÖÖ.. Whatís your next move?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CIVIAV 5/2/2011 6:53AM

    I admit it. I'm mostly terrified and gonna do it anyway! ~Warrior Woman

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HAWTLIKEME 4/13/2011 7:42PM

    Thank you. Words I most definitely needed to hear. I LOVE your self acceptance. So often we make the mistake of "changing" who we are raether than using our character and talents to their potential and for enhancing our own and the lives of others.

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AYAMMAYA 4/13/2011 4:30AM

    Gosh...I thought it was just me. Thank you!
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EXERTIGER 4/11/2011 6:03PM

    I like the parts about I am who I hang around with and I am what I believe I am. I guess it's obvious what I need to work on. Especially what I believe I am.

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MEGA_MILES 4/11/2011 10:32AM

    emoticon

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DDOORN 4/11/2011 8:44AM

    Hey, note from a fellow people-pleaser here:

What I've been trying to do is to be just as dedicated a caregiver for myself as I naturally am toward others.

I often sign off with folks who are having a tough time by saying: "take gentle care of yourself." Well, I'm striving to do the same for ME TOO! :-)

Don

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TIME4AFITME 4/10/2011 8:36PM

    Thank you for sharing.

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BEEJ728 4/10/2011 10:19AM

    I was rejected for a new job this week and that sent me into a tailspin. I spent the rest of the week feeling horrible about myself because they didn't love what I did. The job loss translated in my head to - they don't love me. Reading this blog gave me perspective and encouragement to not give up on myself. I copied out the sentence "Start living your life with a joyful emphasis on what I can do to make this world a better place to live in." and will post it around my home so I don't forget this good advice. Thanks.

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46SHADOW 4/10/2011 9:04AM

    Thnk you for sharing. it pleased me-hee hee.

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HEALTHYPM 4/10/2011 1:22AM

  very well said ...

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LUBAML 4/9/2011 8:40PM

    Great blog! I love reading your blogs. Thanks for sharing. Love your Mantra. emoticonLuba

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MISSM66 4/9/2011 3:29PM

    I Love your Blog,keep up the good work emoticon emoticon

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DMC10241 4/9/2011 10:45AM

    My next move is to type up and paste those four things to find balance on my bathroom mirror so I can see them everyday! Thank you... once again you take the words right out of my mouth. I'm the youngest of seven and have ALWAYS been a people pleaser. I've put so many people before me, I couldn't even see me anymore.

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ERIN4771 4/9/2011 10:43AM

    from one people pleaser to another...love this blog emoticon.....awesome mantra, one that i may just steal for myself!!

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KELLY40222 4/9/2011 10:29AM

    John I'm going to borrow your mantra! Wonderful blog!

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VNUSFLYTRP 4/9/2011 10:23AM

    I find that I tend to be a people pleaser at times as well. For me, its frustrating because you tend to look to people a lot for approval and validation instead of seeking it within yourself. I have been improving in that department. I'm feeling a lot more confident as I go on my journey and I'm learning a lot about myself. I'm learning too that it's okay if people don't like me because of something I say or do, the way I look or whatever. But its a work in progress.

I love your mantra! Awesome Blog! emoticon

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ELLE1955 4/9/2011 8:29AM

    Loved your Mantra!

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RONALANA 4/8/2011 8:46PM

    I think many of us fall into this category! Thanks for the insights.

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MRSSCHENCK 4/8/2011 7:31PM

    I love reading your blogs!

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FIRESTARINFINI 4/8/2011 6:53PM

    My next move is to drop five pounds, learn everything I need to get into graduate school, and do what I can to make myself happy.

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SMILEYBEE 4/8/2011 2:53PM

    Looks like you pleased lots of people with this blog (including me) ... good for you. I admit to being a people pleaser. Given a choice, I'd rather be pleasant that otherwise. Learning the boundary thing is the trick. Good blog!
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Comment edited on: 4/8/2011 2:54:27 PM

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AMYDAWN313 4/8/2011 2:22PM

    enjoyed reading your blog - I think so many of us are unaware that we are people pleasers.

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JOANIEBUG46 4/8/2011 12:32PM

    Really like this blog! And I've got to say, you could be writing this for me -- I have that same need to please. But that's who we are.
Hope you continue sharing and have a terrific day! emoticon

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PATTILYNN224 4/8/2011 12:22PM

    I too am a people pleaser but am trying to get past that. Some days I get concerned that I will go too much the other way and become self centered with an "I don't care" attitude. I liked your mantra. Thanks for that.

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CSMARTIE 4/8/2011 12:15PM

    Wow I didnt know men had the same issues on this as women - interesting! Great Blog!

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SASKGIRL81 4/8/2011 11:18AM

    I'm a people pleaser as well and I know it's biting me in the butt too often. Great blog! Puts things in perspective :)

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VANMETRE70 4/8/2011 10:58AM

    Thank you for your honesty and openess. Deep down we all want to be accepted, liked and to please others. Your mantra is inspiring! emoticon

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2BEEFIT 4/8/2011 10:52AM

    oh yeah, I seek the approval of others. I am tired of it. It is ME that I need to find approval with, and I am doing it. I do not need to justify my weight, or losing it to anyone. Just myself, and I will celebrate with my sparkfriends! :)

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RAD062010 4/8/2011 10:46AM

    Dude,

I like the way you write.....ergo I must like you!

LOL

Seriously, you reveal yourself and you share...what's not to like. I wish you well on your journey.

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WADHA1973 4/8/2011 9:49AM

  inspiring

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TIREDOFME21 4/8/2011 8:48AM

    Thanks for your inspiring words. I really like the last part. emoticon

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MARVEEME 4/8/2011 8:34AM

    People pleasers forget to please the most important people: Themselves.

By letting go of the need to be "good enough'' for everyone else and by letting go of perfectionism in personal efforts, they can lighten up on themselves and learn to enjoy life, to relax, have fun and play, nurturing the inner child in themselves.

SPARK ON!

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BABS4625 4/8/2011 7:41AM

  Great blog and because i am a people pleaser i understand where you are coming from. I liked the 4 things that help you stay balanced and may try to apply them to myself. Thank you!

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BECCABOO127 4/8/2011 2:58AM

    I like the 4 things that allow you to find balance. I will have to remember that as it is words of wisdom! emoticon

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DOVESEYES 4/8/2011 1:26AM

    Great blog --makes us face ourselves and say we are people pleasers too. Great work.

Thanks

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GOANNA2 4/8/2011 1:09AM

    Great blog, thanks John.

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NELLBELLA26 4/7/2011 11:39PM

    I love your honesty with us and with yourself. I am a recovering people pleaser, too. To put others above yourself and their needs ahead of your needs only puts you at a severe disadvantage. You have to take care of yourself first and foremost. I'm learning this and trying to do that on a daily basis.

I enjoyed reading this and realizing that it is a struggle that others have endured as well. Your heart is just too big for its own good.... lol.
Love your blogs and your ethusiasm. Keep up the great work! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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XENA1956 4/7/2011 10:00PM

    Loved this blog. I was always trying to please my father. I finally just let it go and decided it was better to just let him slip out of my life a few years ago. I haven't seen him since my son turned 7 and he his almost 25. Can't please everyone all the time, so you might as well please yourself. You are so right about being successful, you've got it all together now!
Hugs to you my Sparks friend, Teri

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COFFEENGRACE 4/7/2011 9:04PM

    What an awesome blog! I to am a recovering people pleaser. Some days are harder than others. However, the more my faith increases in God's love for me; the less I worry of what others may think. I feel like a baby learning to walk on my own. emoticon

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LINDABENEDICT 4/7/2011 8:46PM

    What a thought provoking blog ! I too am a people pleaser ....I am trying to be a recovering people pleaser ...but I don't think I'm making a whole lotta progress .....I am trying to please MYSELF 1st too though!Thanks for saying this sooo eloquently !

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REDLACED 4/7/2011 8:41PM

    great blog!

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BIGBONED8 4/7/2011 8:21PM

    thanks for a great blog - I think we are all people pleasers in some way but don't want to say it out loud.

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WONDEROONA 4/7/2011 8:18PM

    What a great blog, I am a people pleaser, also. I realize that, while I haven't turned to food, I have spent a great deal of money on people trying to get them to like me. I need to set boundaries. You are inspirational. Thank you.

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CHRISS1225 4/7/2011 8:12PM

    Great post John, a whole lot of food for thought here.

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MAC7755 4/7/2011 8:01PM

  Great blog. I am struggling with setting boundaries and not feeling guilty about everything past and present. Your blog really hit home. Good for you.

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FATHINSN 4/7/2011 7:46PM

    I'm still trying to say no when I know I'm not able to do what been requested, especially to parents and bosses. I just want everyone to be happy with me but don't want to totally ignore my own needs and wants. Thanks for blogging about this, a guideline to us other people pleaser to balance our life to not become fanatic people please!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 4/7/2011 7:20PM

    You know, your REAL friends will appreciate it when you stop focusing on pleasing them and start just being YOU.

I have acquaintances who are people pleasers and while you might think it's a pleasant thing, it is not. It is not possible to have a real friendship with some of them, because they're so busy running around trying to be liked, they end up flaking out on us, not representing how they really feel about things, and generally disappointing themselves and us.

I just thought I'd mention that, because I suspect these acquaintances would probably be horrified to know I think this way (I have not told them because they are acquaintances and not friends).

So just please know that you're doing EVERYONE (not just yourself) a favor by being yourself, even if it risks sometimes hurting someone or even offending them. Life is too short to go around not sharing your real self with people you care about.

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Comment edited on: 4/7/2011 7:21:51 PM

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DEEISINSPIRED 4/7/2011 7:10PM

    Hi John,

Just wanted to stop by and say what a heartfelt, honest to goodness true people pleaser blog! emoticon It's nice to see others coming out and sharing a story, a thought or an event to have a voice as a people pleaser and know they are not alone. Look at all the lives you've touched with just one blog...simply wonderful!!

Congratulations to you on setting boundaries, and for your acceptance of yourself! All the very best to you on your journey to better health, and a wonderful life!

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SWEETMOMMY41 4/7/2011 6:14PM

  i agree. thanks for saying that you are a recovering people pleaser. i,too, am a recovering people pleaser. now, i don't try to please people all the time. have a great day!

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SHEBA7 4/7/2011 5:35PM

    Thank you for your blog....good for you. Mine might be slightly different. I always thought people liked me more...paid more attention to me when I lost weight. Maybe so...but I am sure it was mostly in my head. Your true friends will love you no matter what you weigh. The others...well they are missing out on a big blessing! emoticon

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