The goal is balance.
We need balance between work and play. We need balance between giving and receiving. We need balance in thought and feelings. We need balance in caring for our physical self and our spiritual self.
A balanced life has harmony between a professional life and a personal life. There may be times when we need to climb mountains at work. There may be times when we put extra energy into our relationships. But the overall picture needs to balance.
Just as a balanced nutritional diet takes into account the realm of our nutritional needs to stay healthy, a balanced life takes into account all our needs: our need for friends, work, love, family, play, private time, recovery time, and spiritual time - time with God. If we get out of balance, our inner voice will tell us. We need to listen.
Today, I will examine my life to see if the scales have swung too far in any area or not far enough in some. I will work toward achieving balance.
From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation.
The "All-Or-Nothing" Mentality Is The Killer (blog June, 2012)
The ‘all-or-nothing’ mentality kills us every single time we try to lose weight or to embrace a lifestyle change, doesn’t it? We tell ourselves we either have to be perfect or we won’t do anything at all. We’re either fat or desperately trying to lose weight overnight. We want it yesterday & we won’t take no for an answer. Are you nodding your heads here?
We’re going to throw ourselves into a back-breaking exercise routine that we can’t possibly keep up with on a daily basis or else we’re hopeless couch potatoes unwilling to move a muscle. We’re either starving ourselves mercilessly or eating like animals. We’re either 100% obsessed with counting every piece of gum that goes into our mouths or we’re eating an entire cake straight from the box. This is the ‘all-or-nothing’ mentality I’m referring to. I’d venture to guess we’re all guilty of this behavior or we have been at some point in our endless battle with food & weight control. I myself have had this mentality my whole life & it’s just recently I’ve come to the conclusion that it must end. Now.
If I get a flat tire, I have it fixed...........I don't slash the other 3.
The all or nothing mentality killed me in maintenance countless times over the years. If I ‘blew’ the diet, I’d continue to blow it & ditch my whole program. Cuz hey, I blew so I’m finished. How ridiculous is that way of thinking?? If I have a bad day now, I get right back on plan & minimize the damage…I don’t continue that crazy eating behavior & throw in the towel! That’s why I’m successful this time in maintenance but never before! That’s it in a nutshell.
We have people here who insist on perfection at all times…..insist that it’s vital to stay 100% on plan 100% of the time in order to be a true ‘success’. We have others who insist it’s perfectly fine to go off plan from time to time & still be a ‘success’. Whatever your strategy is isn’t the issue here. There are people who stay 100% on plan all the time in 5/1 & wind up gaining every pound back they lost & more. There are people who go off plan once in awhile & still get to goal & keep the weight off. I truly don’t think staying on plan or going off plan during the weight loss phase is an accurate indicator of how you will handle yourself in maintenance, I really don’t. What I do think is vital for long term success is finding a way to ditch that all or nothing mentality & come to terms with the fact that weight management is an ongoing process. You will spend the rest of your life being aware of what you eat & avoiding your trigger foods if you want to keep the weight off, let’s face it. Does an off plan eating event mean you’re finished with the process? Of course not!!!
I’ve been pretty darn vigilant in maintenance but yeah, I have had my moments of eating too much…believe me. What do I do when that happens? I get right back on plan & into my usual routine immediately & act like nothing happened. That’s not to say I’m unaware of what I did….I just don’t let it get me down or totally off track…that’s the difference.
I jog in place for 15 minutes every day. I walk 4 flights of stairs 4 times per day 5 days per week, and I do some floor exercises & 10 minutes on the Crazy Fit. I’m better off exercising a little every day than I am forcing a grueling workout on myself. I don’t respond well to backbreaking exercise. I’m liable to feel sorry for myself if I do that & I may feel ‘entitled’ to eat more as a result. So I don’t do it. I have figured out what works for me & I do it.
I’m not sure there is any ‘right or wrong’ when it comes to making a lifestyle change except for one: that all or nothing mentality is wrong. It will kill you every single time & prevent you from getting to goal or keeping the weight off. Ditch it. Don’t dwell on making yourself into a perfect creature, it ain’t gonna happen. 99% or more of us will fall off plan during the 5/1 or sometime afterwards. We will relapse. Period. That’s not a figment of my imagination, that is reality. How will we handle that relapse is what I’m asking you to ask yourself. What is your plan of action to rebound after you eat too much? What is your plan to get back on track after you fall off? One bite does not have to lead to another unless we allow it to. And if we do allow it to, then we pick ourselves up & get back to the routine we’ve developed that will allow us to get where we’re going & to stay there.
I’ll end by saying yes, it’s a good idea to stay on plan all the time so you can allow those new eating habits to sink in. Remember one thing though: those old eating habits won’t get erased from your memory….you can call on them any time & they’ll be happy to come out & play. Those bad habits will, however, stay in remission while you stay on plan. Make it your goal to accomplish 2 things here: to stay on plan every day and to ditch the all-or-nothing mentality when it comes to food.
For today, I am not going to starve or binge. For today, I am not going to kill myself exercising or act like a couch potato.
For today, I am going to live in moderation.
For today, I am going to live in moderation.