How can it be that I rewarded myself too much and not enough at the same time? Last year, I almost couldn't go a meal without some sort of sweet treat - a candy bar, a cookie, a slice of cake, a vanilla latte, etc. Every shopping trip saw cakes and cookies and ice cream hop into my shopping cart. My life revolved around giving myself goodies because "I deserved them".
But then I would rag on myself endlessly for the things I didn't do right. Not drinking enough water. Not eating enough fruits and veggies. Making poor food choices. Not exercising. The list goes on and on and on.
Even if I did do something "right", I'd find some way to criticize it. It wasn't a big enough change. It was only once. It really didn't matter. And on and on.
Even now, I'm not perfect. If I don't think I've lost enough weight, I criticize myself for my food choices. Maybe I had too much salad dressing. Maybe I should have skipped the Sugar-Free Cool Whip on my cookie. And so on. And so forth.
Back then, when I "rewarded myself", I wasn't really "rewarding myself" - I was burying my feelings in food. I knew I was fat, didn't want to do anything about it, didn't think it mattered, so I ate what I wanted. Not a good philosophy, let me tell you, but the truth. I was LAZY.
But I've lost weight. I've made it work. I'm down over 80 pounds from where I started. A "loser" doesn't do that. A "quitter" never makes it that far. If I wasn't doing something right, I shouldn't have lost a pound, right?
So rewarding myself now is different. I can't really say I have done anything specific to mark any milestones - I certainly don't use food as a reward anymore! Instead, I see my rewards in a different form:
My reward comes in looking at myself in the mirror and seeing a healthy face.
My reward comes in cleaning out the fat clothes from my closet.
My reward comes in exercising or walking during lunch and not being exhausted.
My reward comes in looking great in new clothes and not dreading clothes shopping.
My goal: don't be so hard on yourself, Carolyn! We all make mistakes, but every step forward is a step away from what you were.
And the second: Be proud of your accomplishments, Carolyn! You worked hard to get where you are. Don't be afraid to pat yourself on the back and relish it!!
Inspired by the SparkDiet: