After attending my WW meeting this morning, I am left thinking about some important issues. Today’s conversation reminded me that even though I am healthy and fit, I still have a lot of issues to work out. This week has been a challenging one for me, and there were times when I didn’t track, weigh, and measure my food and that is concerning to me. Maybe that’s why the group’s discussion lead me and another member to talk about what it is like to feel a loss of control over the process. We talked about the fear of “gaining it all back” and (for me) the public shame that would accompany that if it were to happen.
Gaining back the weight is a common fate for so many of us. Here is the thing, I think one reason that may happen is because once the weight is off it feels as if the problem is solved. In reality, the problem that caused the weight gain is most certainly not “solved”. I know because I can see some patterns now that were more elusive to me in my past. Now I see that most times, when I start picking and eating food mindlessly, it’s usually a stress response. Sometimes, when I feel like I need some kind of external comfort I turn to food, it’s a conditioned response. A coping mechanism that provides some relief in the short term but in the long term really hurts me. To some of you these insights may not seem like big revelations; however, they are for me personally. That’s what matters.
Weight loss and maintaining it is really difficult. Some days are harder than others. I tell you this because I don’t want anyone reading these posts to think I’ve got this all figured out. I don’t want anyone thinking it’s easy for me, or that I have the benefit of some special talent for this. It’s not that I have some kind of secret that I can sell. I write these posts to inspire myself and hopefully anyone else who decides to read them.
So here comes the inspirational part of my post for today. There is so much we can do to help ourselves be successful, we have a lot of power. Accessing this power in times of need comes down to three simple steps:
- Take a beat to engage self-awareness over what is happening in the moment allowing yourself to become mindful of your actions, thoughts, and feelings. Think of it as being a quiet observer.
- Then take aim and be strategic by executing control over something. Select one thing to say yes or no to and see how that makes you feel. Be thoughtful and present be mindful.
- Win, lose, or draw make a choice. It doesn’t really matter if the choice you make is good for your weight loss efforts or hinders them. The point here is that by acting mindfully you are waking yourself up to a making an informed choice.
The word mindful is key to this recovery plan but it is not synonymous with success. The function here is to uncover what you’re doing so you can think about why the behavior is happening.