Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Winning the "battle" that wasn't really a battle at all...

I wanted to continue talking about this weight loss "battle" that is going on in my head and not so much in my body.

First, I have to say that it's taken me months to realize that my lack of weight loss is really in my mind. Boy, I hate saying that out loud because I feel like I sound crazy--wacko! But I think back to November when I first started experiencing this and it all makes sense now.

We all have a subconscious, right? And our subconscious tells us things and makes us do things that we otherwise wouldn't normally be aware of. So why would my subconscious be sabotaging me? If anything, I think it would want to help me more than hurt me--to its benefit, right?

Maybe there's no answer to that. Or maybe there is, but I'm just not equipped to know the answer. But for me, just realizing that it's possible is really winning half the battle.

So here I sit, knowing that my mind has sabotaged me. Now what?

Well, I have to say, I think I'm getting a small handle on it.

I've already lost the 2 pounds I gained last week and I'm down another pound or so on top of that.

Sure, I've been exercising (though not as much as I'd want to) and I've been drinking all my water and tracking everything I eat, which I've said time and time again is what will help me lose weight. But other than my outward habits that are helping me, I'm developing an inner peace about this whole thing.

What I've needed to do for so long, but had no idea how to do, or even that I needed to do, was to stop and take a breath and know that I have the power to allow myself to lose weight and I have the right to be okay with that.

You know, in watching Biggest Loser last night, Jillian was picking on Laura telling her that she's making herself a victim. I was so mad at Jil for doing that. You could clearly see by Laura's reaction that she was totally giving 1000% percent to this weight loss journey and she was so appalled that someone would think otherwise.

But look at her teammates. Do you think for a minute they'd say out loud that Laura was the "weakest link" if there wasn't some sort of truth in that?? I know I wouldn't. No matter how much pressure I was getting from my outward voice of reason, my trainer. But yet they all agreed that Laura was weak.

I think I was, am, just as weak as Laura but I never knew it. I completely denied the notion that I could possibly be doing ANYTHING that would for a second intentionally sabotage my weight loss. But you know what? That's exactly what I did.

One of the receptionists at my WW meeting said that exact same thing to me months ago. I brushed it off. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!??? As hard as I've been trying and as much as I want to be at goal, do you actually think I'd intentionally do ANYTHING to hinder that drive.

But yet, I did.

Now that I can see that, I can deal with it. You know what they say, seeing the problem for what it really is is half the battle.

Now I just have to know this and then incorporate it into the front of my brain. I have to know that I have these tendencies and confront them for truly what they are.

Like Laura, I felt like the victim. I was doing EVERYTHING I could possibly do to lose weight--truthfully! And I really did feel like a victim. "Why is this happening to me?" "I know I did everything right, it must just be that my "body" wasn't cooperating with me." Those are statements of a victim.

Well, I'm not gonna be a victim any more. In fact, I never really was one. I just made myself believe I was because I didn't know what was going on.

Now as I sit here typing I'm feeling empowered and seeing clearly for the first time in many, many years.

God wants me to have a beautiful body. And God wants me to be happy with a beautiful body. Dare I say God wants me to be proud of my beautiful body? No, not in a prideful, boastful, sinful way, but in an honest and true sense of appreciation. I'm allowed that. God wants that for us. He sure was proud of the beautiful creation that he made, why shouldn't we be?

So now where do I go?

One day at a time. One meal at a time. I can see so clearly now in my head. I can do this. I can lose weight. I can be happy with the weight I've lost. I can be proud of the weight I've lost. I'm worth it.

I truly am.



jinxxxygirl said...

Well thats it Cara I'm gonna have to go sit and think about this thing. I KNOW i have selfsabotaged myself in the past. In past weightloss efforts getting below the big 200 was HUGE for me and darn if i didn't get down to like 204 and sabotage my way all the way back up.
I really thought i was past that self sabotage thing. I'am 27ish pounds away from goal sitting about 177. And to tell you the truth i never in my wildest dreams honestly thought i would get this far.And its like 'now what?' I think i'll make a blog in a little while and talk more about this but thanks so much for bringing it up and sharing. Jinx!

Elizabeth said...

Dear Cara,

Thank you for your honesty...but do you think the sabotaging goes deeper then that in your mind? I am thinking that it might in mine. I mean there were several factors that contributed to me being overweight in the first place. I was sexually abused as a child and now at 44 I have been in a really bad marriage for a very long time. I have a husband who tells me all the time that he isn't attracted to me and never will be. We are still together because our children are still at home, and I am trying to establish a life for myself so that I can make enough money on my own to support myself. So, in my mind there are several messages...I am damaged goods, I don't deserve to be happy, I don't deserve to be pretty, I don't deserve to be loved. I mean I think about leaving my husband and the only thing that I think about, is well, who would want me anyways, I am old, not very attractive, have two kids, yada yada yada... I know it all sounds like I am the victim and yet if you were to look at me you would never think that all those thoughts were going through my mind, but I too am weak and I need to figure out how to fix all of those bad messages that are going through my head and to really be proud of myself and love myself.I try and challenge my feelings all the time and then when I start feeling bad I shove all those feelings back up on the shelf again. I guess that is why I ask are you sure that it is just the knowledge that your mind is sabotaging yourself, or is it deeper then that? I am sorry this is so long, I too am trying to figure this whole thing out and it has just been so hard. I so want to get to my goal and I want to put this struggle behind me. Bless your heart for listening. Elizabeth

Karyn said...

Atta Girl!

Get a grip on the mind games and the rest will be an adventure instead of a battle.

I'm so glad for you, Cara!

Lauri said...

Lots to think about here. I think those of us that have had weight issues for so long do self sabotage. For me, once I decide to do this for myself, the first part is exciting. It feels good to be in control of making changes. But then the reality sets in that these changes can not be temporary. I won't reach my goal and then be able to relax back to the habits I have been comfortable with. I think that is when the self sabotage starts for me. I realize that I am afraid of having to live like this the rest of my life if I want to stay healthy. I was just having this conversation the other day, about how I can NEVER go back to the way I lived before, so the reality is there is no end in sight to what I am doing. Sometimes that is overwhelming to think of. Knowing that relaxing the process for even a day can set you back. And while weight loss is a huge thing, the driving force for me in all this is knowing my family history with heart issues, and so wanting to get heart healthy, which again, means never being able to "stop" this process. The self sabotage part tells me the long term is too difficult, so why bother. I think this is why it is so important to take it a day at a time, from one weigh-in to the next, etc. Looking too far down the road can feel exhausting. But, Cara, you have come SO far, done SO well, and accomplished what many people only dream of all their lives. You have so much to be proud of. This IS a lifelong project, so it doesn't matter how long it takes you to get there, as long as you are heading in the right direction, as long as you never give up on yourself. That is definitely one of your huge strengths and the reason everyone comes here to read your words. You manage to keep yourself encouraged and in doing so, encourage everyone else. So when things don't go quite right, just remember that you always get a "do-over" the next day or week. Staying determined will always win out over self sabotage! And if anyone can do it, YOU CAN!

Deborah said...

Fabulous post!!!

Hey, guys, that's my little girl.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the two recent posts! This journey is a hard one, and it's great that you are not only losing weight and getting healthier -- but also learning about yourself. The whole realizing you aren't a "victim," I think, is essential. I think in any aspect of life -- not just weight loss, but your job, your relationship, your friendships -- an attitude of "poor me," or "this is so unfair," or "this is someone else's fault" truly stands in the way of emotional maturity. That's my soap box. Good luck -- I love your blog!

Laura said...

Cara, great post.. Thank you for the wonderful post. Just know that you have changed my life, by inspiring me to do better.
Feel free to come by my blog and give me some feedback

SeaShore said...

There is always a payoff for something we do. Sometimes it's hard to figure out what that payoff is, or it may be hard to admit to what it is, but it's there.

Thanks for posting about this. Clearly it's why my own losses have slowed so much.

IRJessica said...

I read this when you posted it, but had no comment 'cause I didn't think I had anything to add or relate. Days later your post has stayed on my mind. Since I have (relatively) less to lose, I logicked that I couldn't possibly see the losses that other people saw. Sure as day- I didn't see them, having losses of less than a half a pound all the time. Then just before your post at weigh in the lady asked if I was going to keep losing 0.2 lbs. It hadn't occurred to me to have higher expectations.

I sure hope the realization leads to very good things!

IRJessica said...

Good things for us both that is!

Sharon said...

Cara - this is the first time I have been to your blog and this entry is just awesome. I will continue to come back to you to look for inspiration. Sharon