Saturday, May 19, 2012
Unfortunately on those occasions when I have misused that gift I have paid the price. One Valentines Day about 15 years ago I took my wife and younger daughter out for dinner. They wanted to try a new Mexican restaurant in St. Louis County. It was nice, not expensive, and when the food was served I found the food to be much milder than what we had been eating in New Mexico for 7 years. At this point I’m using my brain as God intended. I asked the girls “where’s the heat” and my wife picked up the Diablo Chili “garnish” from her plate and said “Here’s your heat”. Now, the Diablo is a tiny innocent looking atomic bomb and we both knew it. I apparently put my brain on autopilot when I heard the words here’s your heat because I reached out, took it out of her hand, and ate the whole thing.
My wife’s mouth dropped open and she didn’t say a word. Then my body temp shot up about 100 degrees, my eyes watered, and my nose was running. My tongue felt like someone was holding a blowtorch on it as my face turned beet red and heavy sweat covered my forehead. The waitress had just stopped by to ask us how everything was and did her best to hold back her laughter. The fact that my wife and daughter were laughing so hard made it much tougher for her to maintain her composure. My wife told her what I had done and the waitress quickly got me a pitcher of water. I drank two glasses very quickly. Now that I could finally speak I asked for milk. Actually I begged for the milk and she responded quickly. Finally, some relief and the sweating began to subside. To this day the three of us will die laughing if either of us says “Where’s the heat”.
This lifestyle change journey is like that trip to the Mexican restaurant. As long as we use our brain and stick to the plan things are fine. When we go on autopilot we resort to old habits and traps are all around us. Our brain can keep us in the game as long as we keep giving it positive reinforcement and consciously look for the traps. We have a lot of Diablo Chilis that we need to recognize and respond appropriately to. When we pick up that Chili, that doughnut, that block of cheese, that bar of chocolate, or whatever our trap is we need to use our brain and remember where we are and where we’re going. Had I taken a small bite of that Chili (moderation) it would have given me the heat I was seeking. Eating the entire thing was a huge mistake. Sooooo – the next time you’re tempted to splurge just remember - “Here’s your heat.”
Enjoy the ride,