Thursday, May 6, 2010

DAY 270 The Battle Between the Ears


 Hi Journal & Friends,

Someone once left a nice comment on my blog saying they thought I was "astute". While I enjoy compliments as much as the next guy, something in me usually deflects them, feeling like I don't fully deserve them. Or at the very least, I want to say something like "it didn't come easy to learn that!" or "I wish I had discovered that years ago"  (I'm working on just saying "thank you").

I looked up the word Astute in my handy dandy computer dictionary, and here is what it said:

astute:  having or showing an ability to accurately assess situations or people and turn this to one’s advantage 

And I got to thinking of the context for which the comment was left.  It had to do with something I wrote on Day 115: The battle is won or lost between the ears.

And guess what? I realized that although it DID take me years and years to learn this... I can truly say that I do finally GET IT. The battle IS won or lost in our thinking, our attitude, our beliefs... which drives our choices. 

And these choices take us either TOWARD or AWAY from our goals, depending upon which choices we make.

I finally fully accepted this truth, which of course encompasses the idea of being responsible for those same choices. And I decided to use it to my advantage to help me do this thing I have been "trying" to do all my life... change.

How did I "turn this to one's advantage"? I decided to "brainwash" myself. Honestly, that was my plan. Not very fancy or deep sounding, is it?

I had read that you can't "unlearn" something, but you CAN learn new stuff. You can replace the old self-defeating thoughts and limiting beliefs with NEW healthy stuff.

I paid my dues. I spent the time. I made the effort. I can't begin to count up the days, weeks, months and YEARS that I "fed" on positive, hopeful, uplifting, encouraging, inspirational and motivating information. 

And yes, I had to wade through my share of time-wasters. "Eat the meat and spit out the bones" is my philosophy. 

We all want the short-cut, but there is none. 

You must do it for yourself. We are all different, and will respond to different approaches.

I was choosey... if it was just so much useless intellectual psycho-babble, it didn't last long around me. Sorry it that sounds snitty... but this is life or death we are talking here. Remember, I allowed myself to get up to 460 pounds. I was desperate. I didn't have the time, health, or energy to waste on people only out to enhance their own ego with fancy theories or programs.

Wanna know my favorite in-a-nutshell plan?? A good solid, rubber-meets-the-road approach?? The down home but effective book written by Dr Phil McGraw, The Ultimate Weight Solution. 

Like him or not as a person, this Texan wrote an effective book for anyone with a teachable heart who is READY to grab ahold of their life and turn it around... who is willing to assume responsibility for their choices and turn that into the POWER to reclaim their life. 

If you need a plan, a track to follow, do yourself a favor, and pick it up... you can get it cheap at or free at your library. As an aside, I once bought a copy of the book and mailed it to someone who claimed she could not afford it. I am not that naive anymore... now I can recognize an excuse when I hear it. LOL!

Anyway, at the bottom of each post here, you will notice a quote "From Dr Phil's Book". Well, that's the book to which I am referring. 

Remember I said I wanted to "brainwash" myself?? I had read the book about 6 times, and I had marked it all up with different colors of highlighters.  I took all my favorite underlined passages, and made little flashcards. I review one almost every day. 

The reason they aren't boring to me is because I haven't mastered them yet! I am still learning to incorporate them into my daily life... to  BE, DO, and HAVE this new way of thinking. Because I believe it with all my heart... 

The Battle is Won or Lost 
Between the Ears.

The Ancient Warrior, by Leonardo da Vinci

From Dr Phil's book: "Are your thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes moving you closer to what you want?"

My verse for today: Praise the Lord, O my soul. O Lord my God, you are very great; you are clothed with splendor and majesty."

My quote for today: "Many people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so." --Bertrand Russell

Enjoy the Journey,



Ex Yo-Yo Dieter Debbie said...

Great post Loretta! I've often said that if I could just turn off the higher thinking parts of my brain for a while, I'd lose weight in a flash. The more caveman(woman!) parts would know what to do to be the right weight. The "smarter" part is the area that has me messed up with food! But you know, even if I lost weight like that, I'd gain again once the "smart" was turned on again...Gah! Can't win!

Dr. Phil IS a good book...I think I've said to you before I especially love the picture of the plate with how any meal should be divided up. Everything he recommends is basic and no-nonsense...and it works. I would have to say that the only part lacking a bit is on the "emotional" front. I always wished that section was longer, yet I eventually found other ways to do the work on feelings and food.

Keep up the great work!
xo Debbie

Anonymous said...

Nice refresher. :) I'm going to have to get that book.

Speaking of people claiming to be unable to afford something and being naive, I have a story.

When I was in private practice, I charged a low fee of $40 for a one hour counseling session. However, I told clients that while $40 was my official fee, if they could not afford that I would accept as low as $25 stating that it cost me $25 in overhead to do an hour session so to go lower would mean that i was paying for their session.

Most clients paid $25 and I was totally okay with that. My husband had a good job then and I wasn't in it for the money. I only needed the business to pay for itself. And it did.

BUT one client said she couldn't pay $25 every week, so asked if she could come every other week instead of the usual weekly appointment. Since it's better therapeutically to do weeklies,rather than see her every other week for $25, I said I'd see her every week for $15. She agreed. I was still okay with that.

UNTIL the day that she walked into my office carrying a shopping bag. She had stopped at the store next door on a whim and proudly pulled out a purse she got at the great price of $20. She paid me $15 at the end of our session. We had a talk the next week when I wasn't irritated. Her fee changed to $25. She still came every week. Lesson learned. I worked on never devalued my services again.

Anyway, loved this post.

I think a new motto I may adopt--taken from your last post--is "No more settling."


4athomej said...

Mind over matter is so true...for me most days it's mind over stomach. Thinking before I eat that second homemade chocolate chip cookie...thinking about my feet moving me away from those cookies and me thinking about my mouth yelling at my kids to finish the cookies so mom doesn't eat them all...can you guess how my day went...LOL

cmoursler said...

Good post. I saw that doctor phil book and never picked it up because (now this IS going to sound snitty...but I don't mean it that way)
I have read nearly every self help book out there.
I saw parts of it, and mainly it addressed behavioral issues, which is a big part. But it wasn't MY key. My key was the mental and not in the normal way...It was all in the way I used food to cope. Until I got rid of the crap from my past that was continually messing up my present, there was no way behavioral modification was going to work. I do think it works VERY WELL once you've dealt with the other...but by then I had already done so many diets that I could cobble together what worked from all my previous failed attempts lol.
I am so glad that he put a book out there that works for you loretta...and probably a good many other people. We need more of it, good common sense lifestyle changes, not more 'temporary fixes'.

Rettakat said...

Hey Chris... you must have flipped thru the book pretty fast.

Here's the skinny:
It's broken down into 7 components, he calls them the 7 Keys.

He doesn't even touch the environmental stuff, the exercise or nutrition stuff, etc, until AFTER the first two keys.

Key 1 is Right Thinking... working on our stinkin thinking before even attempting the rest. Exercises to help reveal our faulty logic, and show the power in our thinking, and how to challenge unhealthy self-talk, and more.

Key 2 is Emotional Healing... goes to the heart of the matter... why we use food inappropriately. How to get closure, and get free from destructive emotions that drive the overeating. Changing what can be changed... forgiveness... letting go of things.. getting closure. Putting it to rest once and for all, and living NOW.

Only then does he go on to the practical behavioral stuff, and all the rest.

Good stuff.

CinciMom11 said...

Grrreat post! Haha, I can see you mailing the best book ever off to someone. I was planning to borrow the book from the library but ended up finding a cheap copy at a used bookstore. I'm a few chapters in, and I've switched over to a book about storms for now. LOVE the Dr. Phil book! Thanks so much for recommending it! I'm excited to get back to it. There really is so much to learn from that book. I love your daily quotes. :) You're a gem, Loretta.

Anonymous said...

I really liked Dr Phils book, I read it several years ago. Though I don't think its perfect, it IS a step in the right direction and much more likely to help a person lose weight than any other diet book I've ever read. I should probably review it again.

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