Thursday, December 20, 2012
It has been a week of reckoning. Little holiday nibblies added up to another 1-pound gain. The good part: I never binged, lost control, or just chucked the whole SP thing out the window. The bad part: I had a little bite of this and a little sip of that all week, and my body's reaction was loud and clear. The lesson: I really can't do that anymore if I want to keep my energy high and continue losing weight.
The nibblies started from my misguided sense that I could have more balance. After all, the weight was coming off nicely and in a smooth progression. When I read the Daily Blog entry on how little bites can add up quickly -- sometimes to as much as 600 calories! -- it all clicked. That's exactly what my body had experienced last week; it's what my body was telling me, too. So, really, having more nibblies and martinis is not the balance I seek.
So what is the balance I seek?
Before SP, I had to work to find ways to fit good parenting, nutrition, and exercise into the time I wasn't devoting to my job. The job came first; my family and my health came second.
For the past few months, I've experimented with flipping that equation. Instead, I've started finding ways to fit my job into a life that is primarily devoted to good parenting, nutrition, and exercise. Being an attentive parent, planning and executing nutritious meals, and daily exercise are the new givens in my day. My job has to fit into the time I'm not devoting to those things.
On paper, it doesn't actually look like very much changed. In my head, though, the difference in approach is enormous. The intention makes all the difference.
Yes, I'll still fulfill my work obligations, and yes, I'll still put in the requisite hours on the job. But it won't take over every aspect of my life again. Instead, each morning I wake to a healthy breakfast and a satisfying workout. Then I work -- but only for the hours I'm contracted for. No more of this working like crazy for free because I think it will do somebody some good. It doesn't. I've learned that all it does is burn me out and lead to overweight and depression.
With balance, I can focus on my parenting and my health first, and let the job simply be what it is. I can let go of hoping it will be more satisfying than that. In 20 years, it hasn't been, in spite of my best efforts. It still won't be tomorrow, or the next day. And that's okay: I'll take care of my daughter and myself instead, and we'll both be much happier.
With this balance, I believe I'll find the peace I've been seeking. I've established a good start on it over the past 2 months ... and I'm hopeful that momentum will carry me into the new year. And beyond.