~No and Yes, a battle~
Monday, January 20, 2014
No...is a powerful word. Defined as negative response, we use this word to affirm our disapproval, opposed response to requests and offers, but overall this word is working of our will. Throughout my childhood, I heard "no" thousands upon thousands of times.
"No, don't touch that!"
"No, you will not use that attitude with me."
"No, you may not spend the night with your friends."
"No, your curfew will not be extended."
But mostly...."no, you can't EAT that," and usually followed up with, "you're big enough already." This last one is indeed sad, I know, but I'm not a victim of this negativity any more.
Now for many purposes, "no" is necessary to protect us from harm, destruction, and terrible consequences. There involves a teachable moment as to why the parent says no and what they mean. Without thorough explanation, a child's curiosity heightens. The child, or in this case, I, began questioning these "no's." As I look over those years I was subjected to "no," I realized I had a rebelling thought and feeling running through me. "No" was a challenge to my will. "No" was controlling and restricting me. I wanted a choice between yes and no!
I began a war with NO.
My life became YES. You would think a life of "yes'" would lead to a positive realm without restraint. It eventually led me into understanding this abhorred "no."
In regards to food, I felt deprived. In my mind, I thought, "NO one will tell me what to eat and not to eat for rest of my life," or "no one knows me, I know myself, and what's good for ME." I rebelled against NO and stormed down a path of terrible judgment, lack of restraint, and over excess. Though I allowed myself whatever I wanted, "no" haunted me. All this resided in me as I struggled with image, relationships, and overall my eating and weight. I failed miserably at any type of discipline or routine. I had created a monster a "yes" monster.
A hurricane of realization emerged upon me and truth was revealed. I realized I was fueled by pain and misunderstanding of "no" from my childhood. My family was wrong by not teaching me proper discipline and the reason for consequences. I was wrong by letting that pain drive me like the chaff in the wind. I used to go on radical diets where I consumed no carbs, no fried food, no soda with the only reason, "it's not good for me." My mind echoed, "you're big enough, no you can't have that." I'd fail within a few days with more weight than when I started.
Looking back to past, living today, and expecting the future, I understand "no" only works for me when I know why. In the up's and down's of losing weight, no is necessary as long "yes" is included.
Today I constantly practice saying,
"no, greasy hamburgers aren't good for you, but yes, we can have a portioned lean meat burger on a whole wheat bun,"
"no, you can't have the whole chocolate bar, but yes, some dark chocolate espresso beans, let's have a few with tea."
"yes you can enjoy a fatty fast food lunch, but no, you won't feel as good as you would eating cleaner foods."
Many nights it's sounds like this..."no, you can't have anything to eat because you'll over eat, yes, i'll have a small greek yogurt and ask my husband for support as I"m tempted to over eat."
Follow your "no's" up with a "yes," provide a reason and remember the consequences of both. Are the consequences positive or negative? Are they leading you down a road of destruction or success.