First things first...Monday weigh in: 380...that's a 3 lb loss this last week. Yes!
On to business...Last Friday I talked about Bob Greene's 5 Questions (here is that post). This week I plan to give my answers to each one, that I originally wrote out back in January 09. I think working on the answers has helped me get to where I am today. These are my words, just as I wrote them back in January.
Question 1: What are you really hungry for?
My Answer: Peace...to feel better...to fill up emptiness...to soothe hurt...to distract from pain, both emotional and physical...to drown out regret and guilt over wasting my life...
One thing I have learned, at least for me, is that when you are looking for honest answers, you have to remember these are just "feeling" answers. They don't have to be logical...or make sense...they are just what comes up. Don't jump all over yourself and judge yourself harshly, or worry about how it will sound. It is what it is. Accept it, learn from it, and think of it as useful information.
I have already done the work that makes this a useful exercise, instead of wallowing in self pity, or staying stuck in the past, the what ifs and the woulda/coulda/shoulda's.
Which is...I ANSWERED myself with my new truths...with my new future...with how I am choosing to live the rest of my life. I refuse to stay stuck back there.
For instance, my dialogue might go something like: okay, you are using food as a drug, a diversion, a way to escape from those feelings you just wrote down...so you don't have to deal with them, work through them, feel them...and it doesn't work, right?! When the eating stops, sooner or later you just feel worse, and the cycle starts all over again.
"Peace, to feel better, to soothe, to deal with emotional pain", etc... I needed to learn healthier ways to give myself what I need. I need to be honest and ask myself what's really going on...sometimes talking it over with God works..sometimes I need a good nights sleep...sometimes I need a good cry and to FEEL it, and see it's alright go through it, I will survive just fine...sometimes I need a quiet place and some soothing music...sometimes I need loud good old fashioned rock n roll!
My point is...I have to stop running from it. I like the saying:
Face your stuff, don't stuff your face.
I think I spent most of my life avoiding pain, avoiding the hard stuff, avoiding going through it and coming out the other side. I remember as a little kid being told "stop crying or I'll give you something to cry about." I never learned a healthy way to handle the stresses of life, but instead to NOT deal with it, to use food for all the wrong reasons....Well, better late than never!
If it's "physical pain", which a lot of people live with, well, if I have done all I can to get it treated, then...I just have to get over myself! I tend to want to feel sorry for myself...poor me, know one knows what I go through...blah blah blah...I need to put it into perspective. There really ARE so many people going through so much more than I am, and if I will live a life of gratitude and focus on all the things I have to be thankful for, it will transform my attitude. And science has proven time and again the mind/body connection...it's not hocus pocus. Your attitude powerfully affects your pain levels. So I choose joy!
As for the last part..."to drown out regret and guilt over wasting my life...", well, that was a toughie for me. I am 58, and have battled this weight all my life. If I dwell on the fact that it took me til NOW to get my act together, I could spiral right down. I just can't go there. I cannot change my past, but I can affect my future. I am responsible for all the choices I have made in my life that brought me to NOW. Some people don't like to hear that...because they don't interpret that as GOOD news.
I choose to view that as good news. Because if, by MY CHOICES, I shaped my past life, then, BY MY NEW CHOICES, I will be shaping my new healthy future!! I am not a victim...I have choices!
I may be late getting to the party, but I accept the invitation. And I am grateful to be invited, and given a chance to enjoy it with the music turned up, singing and dancing and celebrating the possibilities all the way out! I have plans...big plans...dreams...hopes...visions...daring and exciting. What have I got to lose to at least try???
To those who have been given this chance at a younger age, I would say: GRAB IT!! Give it your absolute ALL. Make this YOUR time, and let nothing dash your dreams. We don't control most of what happens TO us in life, but we have ABSOLUTE control over how we respond, which will make all the difference in the world in our thinking and our choices and how we interact with others...and ultimately, our future. Be bold!! Don't let the years slip away...Muster up all the courage inside of you, ignite the fires of enthusiasm, and go for it now!!!
I love this little poem:
"Two men looked through prison bars,
one saw mud and the other saw stars!"
I could go the path of least resistance, and agree with those feelings that come up and try to tell me it's too late...you missed your chance...why try. Or I can challenge it! I can say phooey on that! I refuse to accept that.
I choose to believe that I DO have something to offer...something to contribute...something of value. In the grand scheme of things, I know I am pretty insignificant. Og Mandino says that any time you get to thinking you're such hot stuff, just put your fist into a bucket of water...then withdraw it. "The hole remaining will give you a correct measure of your importance." LOL! But, I also know we each have a few lives we can touch, a reason to be here, a life to live. We matter.
Do I always "feel" this way?? Of course not. I struggle...I have to choose--everyday-- what thoughts will rule my day. And some days I am the windshield, and some days I am the bug! Thank goodness I don't have to allow my feelings to be in charge of my life and future!
"The thoughts we choose to think are the tools we use to paint the canvas of our lives."--Louise Hay
This is a journey we CHOOSE...it's all about choices...and I choose to never give up, to never quit, and to reach out for my dreams. Why not shoot for the moon?? Even if I miss, I will still be among the stars. Sounds good to me!
Photo credit: mrkholcomb's photostream
From Dr Phil's book: "Be realistic about what you can control and what you can't."
My verse for today: "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."
My quote for today: "What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?" --Vincent Van Gogh
Enjoy the Journey, all the way to the end!