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Balance vs. Obsession


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Below is a note that I wrote to my teammates in the BLC 19 Challenge. I thought it was pertinent as a blog:

I have posted my LCW and weigh-in and am sorely ashamed, once again. The post from admin this week hit me hard as I know that I have not been the teammate I should be this round of BLC. Somewhere in the midst of my painting spree I allowed obsession to take over and stopped being measured and thoughtful and balanced in my behavior. I am not trying to make excuses. I am just working to figure out what I am doing and why. I believe that next week will be the re-beginning for me. Hana will be back home, I will not be traveling again for awhile, the painting is basically done (still have one bathroom left to do, but no (self-imposed) pressure now to get it done for a deadline). I realize that I must learn to stop the obsession on my own, without external forces falling back into equilibrium, in order to really get control of myself. I'm clearly not there yet.

The good news for me is that despite the fact I still have a way to go in eating and exercising in a completely healthful manner, I don't weigh 295 pounds anymore. I may fluctuate within a 5-or-so-lb. range, but I manage to keep things from spinning totally out of control. The next step is definitely to learn how to keep big projects/jobs/commitments from becoming obsessions that take over all possible waking hours and to be able, in the midst of things like this, to maintain a healthy lifestyle and push on toward my goals.

I thank each of you for your support and apologize for not being the teammate that I should be. I promise to do my best to end this round on a high note.
__________

I have learned that obsession is a big factor in my success or failure. I am a very committed person, but I am not very balanced. If I am not overly burdened (internally or externally) I am very committed to eating properly and exercising. I can continue on with this commitment to healthy living through most of the everyday ups and downs of life. It is when something big comes along- a big project at work, a big project at home, something stressful with a deadline - that I spiral into obsession.

People routinely comment on how much I can get done. It is true. I can get a tremendous amount of work done in a relatively short span of time, but it comes at a big price. Everything that can be put off, gets put off. Exercise is usually the first thing to go. Then comes grocery shopping (which brings in the healthy variety of food). Then comes cooking, which slides into quick foods and carryout. Sleep suffers, too, either because I am working late into the night or because I am so wound up that I don't sleep well. Health care also suffers. I have lymphodema in my legs and should use a machine for 2 hours each day to remove excess lymph from my legs. I should also be walking daily for the same reason and should be elevating my legs when they are heavy and tired. All of these things suffer because I become determined to accomplish something in a relatively short period of time. Regardless of what I am doing, I must get my work done (though I do most of my work from home) and I must take care of family matters. It is care of myself that really suffers and I have to stop this behavior.

It may seem odd, but I never before saw this behavior as negative. I always prided myself on how much I could accomplish. Now I see what a detriment it is to me. I have a lot of time on planes coming up in the next few days and I want to focus some of that time on reflection about this issue and how to go about recognizing when I am slipping into this obsessive behavior and what I will do to stop it when I see it.

I still want to have drive and accomplish lots of things, but I want to do it while living a balanced, healthy life.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
RICKISMOM1 9/22/2012 5:38PM

    I used to be a big perfectionist-- which led to a lot of similar behavior. Only when I dug DEEP and discovered why I was behaving so, could I take the steps to change

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MAUITN 6/21/2012 12:17PM

    It is interesting that it is so hard for us to realize that all traits have both their pros and cons. We donít often see them. You didnít talk about the things you neglected in your daily posts. We never do talk of those.

On the other hand, I need to be more structured and determined (more obsessed?) because it is entirely too easy for me to laze about and do nothing but read. I can let whole days go by and justify it by saying that Iím retired. I need to apply the FlyLady approach and have a list for each and every day so that I end up with some accomplishments.

Balance. Thatís what we need! Thanks for bringing the topic up.


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AMARILYNH 6/20/2012 9:13AM

    Oh wow - I'm guessing a BUNCH of us are seeing parts (maybe BIG parts!) of ourselves in your post!! Thanks so much for such an honest assessment of yourself!! You mentioned that before you saw ability to get a lot done as a good thing - again, I'm betting many of us do too! So thanks for giving all of us the opportunity to look within ourselves - I'm guessing you've given insight to more than just me!! I am sharing your blog in a link to my BLC team - because I think it is THAT important!! emoticon

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LIZZYP609 6/20/2012 9:10AM

    Oh Jen! I am so happy you wrote all of this down! This resonates with me as well! I am the exact same way!
THIS, this writing things down is the hardest part. Now that you see things more clearly you can surely over come it! Please don't feel like you need to apologize for not being a good team mate! Like the "wise old" Doc Phil says, When you know better you do better" (or is that Oprah? LOL). Whomever said it, it is the truth!
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