Sunday, November 16, 2014

Understanding change…

I don’t know why I have been thinking about change lately, but it’s really been weighing (haha – no pun intended) on my mind, especially with my current struggle to get my weight back down to a reasonable – if not ideal – number.

When I work with recovering addicts, we often talk about change and how hard it is.  I often say to them “Stopping using drugs is the easy part.  If this journey was just about not using, I would be out of a job!”

And guess what – the same applies to weight loss.  The eating less and moving more?  That’s a matter of science.  It’s that easy.  It’s the mental change that is such a challenge.

That’s why for so many people who have weight loss surgery, it doesn’t work.  They either don’t lose, or lose and then gain it back.  Because the change for many is not a mental change.  It’s a physical one and that can only take you so far. 

And please don’t think that this me being judgmental, because it’s not.  It just is a reality. 

Just the other day I was talking to a new physical therapist who was trying something different on me (that’s a story for later) and we were talking about how I “duck walk” – with my toes pointed out.  And I told her I thought she needed to know that this is not from the Achilles injury, but rather from years of being obese and my thighs being so large that my feet needed to point out.

She told me – like I have heard many times – that my weight loss was “amazing”.

But my weight loss is really not amazing.  What is amazing is what I changed mentally.  Which is what is so hard to explain to people.  I can talk all day about healthy foods and protein and being active.  But what I can’t do is explain why and how I went from being someone who CHOSE to sit on my ass and eat unhealthy foods to being someone who made a commitment to eating healthy things, to saying NO to foods I really wanted to eat and being someone who half the time wouldn’t get up to get my own soda out of the fridge to exercising 2 hours a day.

Everyone – and I mean everyone – has the capacity for change.  But not all of us choose to exercise it.

Every single drug addict out there has the ability to stop using drugs.  Every single person who wants to lose weight CAN lose weight!  People can choose to be nicer, to be better parents, to learn and to grow.  But it’s hard.  So fucking hard at times.  And we might not be able to change as much as we want.

But we can make changes to take us towards our goals. Most people simply don’t make the choice.  Which is why people see my physical change as being “amazing”.  Because most of us don’t make good choices.  I didn’t for many years.  And I still make lots and lots of bad choices.

But the next time you are thinking about your goals you might want to visit what block there is mentally to your change rather then just looking at what is happening physically.


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