Hidy Ho Journal & Friends,
You love the parts you agree with, and hate the parts you are convinced he got wrong? You find youself arguing with your iPod as you listen to the interview?
You'd love to "straighten this guy out" so his message could be improved, and that way he could help more folks. But he is convinced that those that are upset by his message are "just making excuses".
So... he has closed his OWN thinking off, to seeing a different perspective that might have validity, which could actually improve his message.
Sigh... I debated even writing about all this, since it's so frustrating. But I will. :-D
Because I decided, FOR ME, to be teachable and "eat the meat and spit out the bones." This guy has some good stuff. Really good stuff.
He does have good ideas, albeit presented in a blunt way. I don't think he's trying to be mean or mocking, like some internet bullies I've crossed swords with... no, to me his heart seems in the right place.
Enough vagueness. His name is Steve Siebold, and he makes his living as a motivational speaker. The core of all his messages have to do with MENTAL TOUGHNESS.
And this time, he wrote a book after he gained 40 pounds, then lost it. It's called
Die Fat or Get Tough:
101 Differences in Thinking
Between Fat People and Fit People.
Yeah, he likes to use shock value to "break through the walls of self-delusion". I suppose that works with some personality types. His main idea is to smack you in the face with the differences between how Fat People think versus how Fit People think. Unfortunately his blunt approach repulses as many people as it reaches. The poor guy has even had death threats!!!
Disclaimer: I have not read the book. Why?? Because after reading a ton of reviews on Amazon.com, reading excerpts at his website (you can get the first 5 chapters for free), and listening to several interviews with Steve, I get the gist of it. I get it. I really do. And agree 100% with the mental aspects of his message. My own summary of his book would be something like: You made the choices that broke it, and you have the power to fix it. It's time to grow up, and make healthy choices. You can DO this!
To me, that message is empowering, and I can get behind it. The part that drives me NUTSO in his approach is that he doesn't take into account that we were told by all the authorities for a LIFETIME that eating a certain way (low fat and lots of "healthy" whole grains and high carbs) was THE way to lose weight and get healthy. And now we are a fatter, sicker nation, with a raging diabetes epidemic. That's no excuse. It's the truth. Some of us tried for years, but it was like swimming upstream against a hard current... exhausting and not making much progress.
I was put on my first diet at age 10. That's FIFTY YEARS AGO!!!!! :-O I searched and searched for a sustainable "diet", and tried, literally, several dozen. It's not just a matter of being fat and lazy. Some of us really tried. But were working with the wrong information. Did we go through times of despair, and just give up for a time?? Did we choose to eat food to affect our emotions, to bring relief, escape, or a thousand other reasons?
Yes, we did. Or we wouldn't be fat.
Yes, *I* did, or I wouldn't be fat.
Do you have any idea how hard it is not to be sucked totally down the drain of hopelessness and self-loathing, after trying and failing that many times???
But to our credit, we didn't give up permanently. We tried to learn. We got up and went ON.
He seems to know nothing about metabolism or the science behind weight loss. The best book I've read on that lately is by Gary Taubes: Why We Get Fat and What To Do About It. It's not a rah rah motivational book. It's full of solid science and facts. I highly recommend it.
Do any of Steve's arguments apply?? Yes, of course. But I'm just saying, he's too simplistic, that's all. Anyway, back to the part of his message that I DO agree with, the mental stuff.
Basically, after all the legitimate factors are accounted for, we are left with: NOW WHAT?? What am I going to DO about it?
And I agree with him, that it takes mental toughness. (Now for all you Christians out there, cool your jets. :-) My Rock, my Strength comes from God. I'm talking here not about the spiritual foundation we all need... but about what we allow ourself to think about, which plays out in our actions. Now that we have THAT cleared up...)
Hmmm... that's actually a term I've puzzled over for many years! Long before it became sort of popular now, and the topic du jour of todays motivational speakers.
So... I decided to be teachable. To not get offended. To not accept the parts he missed the mark on, and accept the parts where he hit the bullseye. He lost his weight in his late 30's, and is still learning. So in time, I'll bet his message is tempered with experience and wisdom.
In the mean time, here are some quotes I transcribed directly from an interview with Steve Siebold that I heard on HCL BlogTalkRadio, hosted by Audley Stephenson (no relation to moi).
- Make a decision.
- Make a decision you're going to do this... if you do the work, you'll see the results.
- This is not complicated... make a decision and take responsibility.
- If you're going to program yourself for success, you've got to do what successful people do.
- Don't feel bad about yourself, don't beat yourself up. Just make a decision that you're going to solve it.
- There's really no staying neutral. You're going to either have to solve it, or you're probably going to die fat.
- Study how fit people think, they really think differently that fat people.
- Study as many world class experts on health and fitness as you can.
- Beginning today, invest 15 minutes a day studying an expert you respect.
- When your beliefs start to change, your behavior starts to follow your beliefs.
- Self-talk is very powerful.
- This is not about being comfortable. This is about being successful. There's a difference!
You can go to Amazon.com and click on Look Inside, and read several pages for yourself. I'd be curious to read what others in our online wt loss community think about it. I mean, we are already working on it, or we wouldn't be here. So I have to wonder if our reaction would be different than someone who is NOT actively working on it. I kinda think it would sting!
So in summary:
I do NOT agree with him when he denies there are legitimate factors that affect our weight loss attempts.
I DO agree we can't be successful if we allow those factors to make us victims.
I DO agree we need to ask NOW WHAT? and get on with solving it.
I DO agree that how we think is absolutely crucial, and that's where I can learn from him.
To be fair, here's Steve's website, so he gets the last word.
From Dr Phil's book: "Change your thinking to change your weight."
My verse for today: "Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle."
My quote for today: "You must do the things you think you cannot do." --Eleanor Roosevelt
Enjoy the Journey,