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#429: Are You a Lumberjack?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

As I drove to dinner tonight, I realized we can often do everything proper and still fail to achieve success, at least as quickly as we would like.

This is apparent here on SP when so many members begrudge that they are doing everything right -- watching their calorie intake, eating healthy foods, exercising -- and still not losing weight or inches and want to give up. They want instant results and seem not to see the big picture.

The example that keeps coming to mind when I read of people who are so readily willing to toss in the towel is the example of a lumberjack chopping down a mighty tree. It might take him a hundred swings of the ax or a thousand, but the tree eventually succumbs to his repeated efforts.

So which strike of the sharp blade caused the tree to topple?

ALL of them. Without any of the total bites of the ax, the tree would continue to stand.

What does this have to do with our weight loss efforts? Everything! One day, one week, one month of eating properly and exercising will never, ever overcome a lifetime of indulgence. The lumberjack would have seen he was making progress by how large the cut was becoming, but for him to get frustrated and give up would have doomed his goal of felling the tree.

In the same vein, today's healthy day may not make the scale move downward or our clothes fit looser, but do we give up because we do not see immediate positive results, or do we keep swinging the ax, being confident that our daily efforts will eventually culminate in success, one pound at a time?

It may sound like a broken record, but we must never give up. We will be so happy and proud of ourselves when we reach each of our successive goals. One meal will not get us there, nor will one exercise. But diligent, consistent, persistent effort will. If we put forth our best effort every single day and know that sometimes we will backslide, then one bright day the scale will move downward and we will fit into smaller sized clothes.

It won't happen overnight and it shouldn't. If it did we would not appreciate the journey we traveled as much as we will when we stand proudly in front of a mirror looking at our new self and, with a broad smile on our face, proclaim, "I did it! I overcame the bad days and the doubts but I persevered! I am a new person and I am proud of myself for never giving up!

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