Recently a friend asked for a few weight loss pointers. Instead of the standard fare, I want to share what made it possible for me to follow the standard fare. An answer beneath the answer. I hope this help someone as much as it helped me.
Start recording what you are doing. Write down when you’re waking up and when you are going to sleep. Don’t judge what you write, just write and start becoming aware of it, and yourself.
After you get a feel of what you are doing , start recording what you eat. Record when you eat, and where you are, physically, emotionally, write whatever you can. Try to be a little more detailed then you think you need to be. Again, don’t judge. Even if it’s 3 donuts and 2 kolaches. It’s not a test, it’s an exercise is mindfulness.
As you continue recording what you are doing, you begin to learn a little bit about yourself. Go ahead and add what you do with your down time. Is it TV time, reading books, scrolling away hours on social media? Don’t judge the actions, they aren’t good not bad. They are just actions.
You are learning yourself. You need to have a basic understanding of yourself, to make a change in yourself.
After a few weeks of getting interested in yourself. After a few weeks of writing, recording, and learning about yourself. Then, you will have measured a basic baseline of your habits.
One cannot manage what they cannot measure. Same is true , one can begin to manage what one has measured. Congratulations, you have been measuring yourself. Now let’s try on a few adjustments and discover the magic happen in front of our eyes.
Choose one small thing you discovered about yourself these past few weeks. Attempt to change that habit. Extra points if you shift it into a better habit.
I'm not saying to fix a bad habit. Don't try to become perfect in that area. Just shift it. Think about small adjustments, weekly. The Grand Canyon wasn’t carved by a single, intense droplet of water. It was many small droplets over time.
Likewise, one significant change likely will just produce disaster. Let's try the small steps daily to reach the big changes. Instead of jumping into foreign worlds of discomfort, let's nudge the edges of existing comfort. Let's nudge them toward your eventual goal. We can always throttle it up more as we journey on. No need to slam the pedal to the metal at the starting line. Think marathon, not sprint.
Maybe instead of 2 hrs of TV a night, try 1 hr of TV every other night. Use the other hour to go for a walk, or catch an extra hour of sleep. Try it 3 days a week. Over the course of a month, you will notice a change.
Maybe instead of 2 servings, try 1 serving 3 times a week. You can also prepare more later, if you really are hungry. But are you hungry, or are you conditioned to eat? Do you know the difference? Eat half the food you think you need. Find out. Instead of rice, try a serving of broccoli. Instead of chicken, try some lentils. Get curious. Get interested. Don't go crazy, just try new take on a familiar meal once a week. You can always go back if it didn't work. You can always change something else.
Maybe decide to unfollow a facebook feed of guilty pleasures. Sure, we all love animal videos, but getting lost in them for hours, who does this help? You? Instead, consider following an inspirational page. Follow a few people who took the path you want to go. Communicate with them, ask them questions. They might provide insight, and help you on your journey. Not so much the case with animal videos. Right?
The Good News
Come to term with where you are. It’s not where you want to be. The good news is... That’s a good thing!
In the Hobbit, it’s the path between the shire to the volcano which makes the story. Success isn’t linear and weight loss isn’t a straight line. You will have days where you will fall off the wagon. Forgive yourself in advance. You are human. Get back on the wagon. It’s waiting for you.
One last thing. Keep asking questions. Keep being interested. Keep exploring who you are. You only get one body on this crazy trip through space on this rock. Try to have fun in it. Sometime the junk food is the healthy option.