Recent discussions with people who are battling their weight have really opened my eyes about the ways our attitudes affect our efforts, and ultimately, our success. We have all been dealt different hands in this game, with some having easier paths than others [itís all relative because none of this is easy!]. But Iím thinking that the ways we use our strengths and balance our weaknesses are the keys to sustaining us in our weight management.
There are people who blame outside forces, and end up angry and hurt, and give up out of frustration. Folks with physical limitations tend to give up on exercise, because the traditional forms are out of their reach, and then they stop trying. Others get frustrated and angry when whatís worked for awhile stops working, and they give up.
There are also some who have faith in a solution, but when it doesnít live up to their expectations, find ways to avoid answering that key question of whether or not they genuinely lived up to their side of the equation. My favorite trap: if these thin people can eat that, or sit around all weekend watching television and eating popcorn, why canít I?
Now before you get the idea that Iím pointing fingers everywhere but at myself, let me just say that Iíve battled, and continue to battle, each and every one of these issues. Thatís why I was able to write those paragraphs in less than 5 minutes!!
But there comes a point when all that energy we put into looking for external reasons needs to turn inward. I started taking a look at MYSELF Ė at how I felt physically and emotionally Ė as I ate, moved, breathed, interacted with people. I finally saw just how much emotion I was swallowing with the food, and the connection between stress and eating Ė that light switch. And I found out that movement REALLY helped, not only with burning calories and overall fitness, but with physically separating me from whatever was stressful.
And my attitude changed, and along with it came the realization that my life-long stubbornness and obstinacy would be the strengths that would see me through this. Iíd used these strengths to get me through a lot over the years, but Iíd never used them for weight control. If anything, Iíd used them to avoid dealing with the issue.
The answer to this struggle is in ourselves. We can turn to others for help, advice, support, wisdom, skills, etc. But in the final analysis, itís our willingness to gently, kindly, humbly, examine ourselves and adjust our attitudes.