I say frequently, and hear others say, "I struggle with my weight." Do we really struggle with our weight? The definition of struggle is to "make forceful or violent efforts to get free of restraint or constriction; strive to achieve or attain something in the face of difficulty or resistance; have difficulty handling or coping with" (Google online dictionary). In all honesty, I do not make a "forceful or violent effort" with my weight and remain overweight. My true issue is weakness; weakness with focus, compromise, self-sabotage and impulse control, not my weight. Being overweight is simply the consequence of my weaknesses. I do not believe I can PERMANENTLY change the consequences of my weaknesses simply by fixating on what I eat. I need to take a REAL look at my weaknesses.
In a previous blog post, Color Inside the Lines, I talk about the importance of remaining focused on the goal. Without this focus things become "chaotic, and sloppy," and "discombobulated." To remain focused on my goal, it must first be identified, and second fed!
In order to remain focused, I must CHOOSE to not compromise my goals. When I am focused I will choose the apple or healthy snack every time! When I compromise my goal..."I can cheat just this once," "I've done so well, I deserve a treat," "what does it matter anyway?"...I lose my focus. When I lose my focus, I'm back to consequences I don't want. How do I NOT compromise? By remaining focused on my identified goal, and feeding that focus.
Food is one of my biggest forms of self-sabotage. I have bought into the lie "I deserve it." How about "I deserve NOT to eat that?" I don't know about you, but when I make unhealthy food choices it affects so much more than my weight; my joints hurt, it's harder to get up from the floor, my self image is weaker, it's hard to tie my shoes, my energy level is much less, it's harder to breath, my blood sugar is high, AND low, my heart rate is higher, etc. The part that upsets me the most are the lies I believe which support those self-sabotaging choices, the biggest of which is "I deserve it." I MUST change my way of thinking, if I am going to stop self-sabotaging. I must eliminate the lies and replace them with actual truth.
Many times, I grab something, put it in my mouth (without thinking), and am sorry immediately; it is almost habit like. One of my worst is getting on the scale.
I get on the scale without even thinking, and then fight my self-sabotaging thoughts for the rest of the day. To avoid a lack of impulse control I must plan. Plan out my meals, and snacks. Have a snack bag prepared for easy "grab and run" success. These things may take some advanced planning and time, but result in HUGE success. I also will make my scale less accessible.
I see two common, underlying conditions in all my issues; laziness, and lack of self respect. The laziness is a result of the lack of self respect and my nature to compromise. Compromising feeds the laziness, and a lack of self respect feeds all my poor choices. If I believe I am a child of God (which I truly do), and I believe I am made in His image as His Word says, (again, I truly do), then I CANNOT be disrespectful to myself without being disrespectful to God; OUCH!
I am a strong believer in living offensively, not defensively. I spent the majority of my life reacting to abuse, which is living defensively. To be able to live offensively, in other words prepared for what the day will bring, I must "Armor Up!" Whether you are Christian or not, you put on armor every day. Sometimes that armor is a lack of armor, however, it still acts as your armor. I have many scriptures that work as armor for me, in this part of my journey these are the ones that I will use to conquer my weaknesses and build strengths:
But I have understanding as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
Indeed, who does not know such things as these?
Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come.
2 Timothy 4:17
The Lord Is Faithful
But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. Also I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.
1 Corinthians 6:19
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
Now that I have identified my weaknesses, I am ready to make some real changes. Here I go, on this new journey of living kinder to me, with a consequence of living healthier. I strive to change my habits which result in unhealthy consequences, and build strength in habits resulting in healthy consequences. Hope you will join me.