Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Recovery Meditations: July 31st


Condemn the fault and not the actor of it. 
William Shakespeare

How many times do we beat ourselves because we have failed to attain the goals we have set? We are human and we suffer from a disease that renders us helpless and out of control. Is it any wonder that we fail in trying to conquer such an unforgiving beast?

It is not ourselves we should be angry with, but the disease and how it affects our actions and reactions. Our inability, or unwillingness -- to realize that we cannot achieve recovery alone is our only true failure. We need help. Without it we are weak and defenseless. This disease would have us believe we are failures ~ but in reality, all we have done is open the doors to our enemy. These doors can be closed again. Our disease not only manifests itself in the form of uncontrollable eating, but also in our negative thoughts and actions towards ourselves and towards the people around us.

It takes no more time to think positively than it does to think negatively. Our only job is to remember that we have a disease. We can choose to forget it, we can choose to beat ourselves up when we leave the door ajar, or we can choose to forgive ourselves and begin again.

One day at a time...
I will work on forgiving myself.
I am worth forgiving.
You are too.


I don't 'conquer' my disease...........there is no cure for it. I work my program of abstinence on a 24 hour a day basis, making the decision to stick like glue to my Food Plan.  Otherwise, if I allow myself a 'taste' of an off plan food, I am literally jumping back INTO the pit of compulsive overeating.  COE brings with it a host of ugliness, including negative thinking and negative behaviors towards myself & everyone else.

I'm not angry with myself OR with my disease, truthfully. Acceptance is at the root of recovery, not anger or self-pity. I DO need help, and I take that help from God and from my fellow COEs who I communicate with on a daily basis.

If I open the door to my disease and invite it back into my life, then I must pick myself UP and move forward, putting abstinence FIRST on my list of priorities once again.  If I didn't dislike myself while overeating, then why would I want recovery? It's kind of a catch-22........don't beat yourself UP when you fall off the wagon...........forgive yourself.........move on, etc.  However, I've 'forgiven' myself about a zillion times over the past 56 years...........and now, I think it's time to stop making the bad decisions that lead me to the need for forgiveness!

For today, I will not confuse who I AM with how I ACT.  I am not my body. I am my soul and my capacity for love and kindness. If I choose to eat off plan today, I won't hate mySELF but I will definitely hate my behavior. I have the choice, as a human being, to stay committed to abstinence and for today, I will

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Food for Thought: July 30th

Focus on Living

Before we found this program, we were obsessed with food and preoccupied with eating. Instead of concentrating our energies on love and work and play, we were side tracked into the unsatisfactory substitute of overeating.

Abstinence gives us a new lease on life. We can develop more satisfying relationships with our family and friends. Since it has been our habit to withdraw and please ourselves with food, it takes time and effort to learn to relate more closely to those we love. It also takes courage and the willingness to be open and vulnerable.

In our work, we have renewed energy and greater ability to concentrate. Where before we may have avoided difficult tasks, we now have the strength and confidence to attempt them.

When we give up eating as a favorite form of recreation, we can find other activities to enjoy. Being released from bondage to food and fat opens the door to all sorts of new possibilities. Less eating means much more living.

We are grateful for this new life.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.


Eating was my favorite form of recreation for most of my life. I watched The Food Network religiously, I cooked & shopped for food, gathered recipes, found new restaurants to visit............I devoted all of my spare time to food & eating.  What a waste of life that truly was!

When I found abstinence 5+ years ago, I felt lost. I had lots of spare time on my hands that had been previously occupied with food. I had to make some tremendous changes in my life if I was to find long term success with weight management. In fact, I had to find a whole NEW set of hobbies & interests that did NOT include food.

Blogging became a huge hobby of mine, and I started writing them on the Medifast website. I used that program to lose 100 lbs and more importantly, to find abstinence. The program trained me to eat 6 small meals a day, on a strict schedule, and to avoid trigger foods at the same time.  For me, the 5/1 was THE perfect plan to establish abstinence.  To date, I've written nearly 650 blogs on that site.  Writing became a new hobby and one that was not harmful.  Typing keeps my hands occupied and OUT of the refrigerator.  I then started this blog a year or so later.  I became involved in health coaching with Medifast, which enables me to give BACK and to stay involved with people who share my struggles and triumphs.  When I stay out of my OWN head is when I am at my absolute best.

The only thing that had to change in my life was EVERYTHING. I couldn't just hope for things to change......I had to MAKE them change.  A goal without a plan is a wish.  I put abstinence & sober living on the TOP of my priority list and made the life changes that were required to succeed.

When I gave up eating as my favorite form of recreation, I found other activities to enjoy. Being released from bondage to food and fat opens the door to all sorts of new possibilities.  Less eating means much MORE living!

My Certified Health Coach Website

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 29th

Have Some Fun

Have some fun. Loosen up a bit. Enjoy life!

We do not have to be so somber and serious. We do not have to be so reflective, so critical, so bound up within the rigid parameters and ourselves others, and often ourselves, have placed around us.

This is life, not a funeral service. Have some fun with it. Enter into it. Participate. Experiment. Take a risk. Be spontaneous. Do not always be so concerned about doing it right, doing the appropriate thing.

Do not always be so concerned about what others will think or say. What they think and say are their issues not ours. Do not be so afraid of making a mistake. Do not be so fearful and proper. Do not inhibit yourself so much.

God did not intend us to be so inhibited, so restricted, so controlled. These repressive parameters are what other people have imposed on us, what we have allowed to be done to us.

We were created fully human. We were given emotions, desires, hopes, dreams, and feelings. There is an alive, excited, fun loving child in us somewhere! Let it come out! Let it come alive! Let it have some fun - not just for two hours on Saturday evening. Bring it with us. Let it help us enjoy this gift of being alive, being fully human, and being who we are!

So many rules. So much shame we've lived with. It simply isn't necessary. We have been brainwashed. It is time now to free ourselves, let ourselves go, and enter fully human into a full life.

Don't worry. We will learn our lessons when necessary. We have learned discipline. We will not go awry. What will happen is that we will begin enjoying life. We will begin enjoying and experiencing our whole self. We can trust ourselves. We have boundaries now. We have our program for a foundation. We can afford to experiment and experience. We are in touch with our Higher Power and ourselves. We are being guided, but a frozen, inanimate object cannot be guided. it cannot even be moved.

Have some fun. Loosen up a bit. Break a few rules. God won't punish us. We do not have to allow people to punish us. And we can stop punishing ourselves. As long as we're here and alive, let's begin to live.

Today, I will let myself have some fun with life. I will loosen up a bit, knowing I won't crack and break. God, help me let go of my need to be so inhibited, proper, and repressed. Help me inject a big dose of life into myself by letting myself be fully alive and human.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation.

 Now go and make
interesting mistakes,
make amazing
make glorious and
fantastic mistakes.
Break rules. Leave
the world more
interesting for your
being here.

Neil Gaiman

 Finding the balance between too
much and too little risk is a challenge.
Some of us are risk-averse by
temperament while others seek out risk.
Some of us were taught to be cautious,
others to be adventurous. Still others were
not taught either extreme and have found
a middle ground. One thing that many of
us have in common is the fear of making
a mistake.

A mistake might be a choice that does
not provide what was wanted, or it might
be something seemingly catastrophic.
We are all conditioned not to make
mistakes—to get it “right” every time.
For many, there is a visceral response to
finding out that a mistake has been made.
But mistakes are really just opportunities
to learn and to grow. We often miss the
growth opportunities in our mistakes,
because we are so afraid to deal with the
situation once the mistake has occurred.
It is time to realize that there are no
mistakes. There are only opportunities
to make a different choice. We can never
go back and change things in the past;
we can only move forward. The choice
to move forward in a positive manner
means that we choose to move through
“mistakes” to great success. So let’s make
great mistakes—the kind that lift us to
new levels of being!


I make amazing
mistakes. I immediately
learn and move
forward. I release the
need to live in fear, to
see myself as incapable,
or to live in

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 28th


One day, I decided to try something new. I took my ten-year-old son out on the St. Croix River on a Waverunner. A Waverunner is a small boating vehicle resembling a motorcycle.

We donned life jackets and embarked on an experience that turned out to be both exhilarating and frightening; exhilarating when I let myself enjoy it; frightening when I thought too much about what I was doing and all the terrible things that could happen.

Midway though our ride, my worst fear came true. We took a spill. We were floundering in thirty feet of water. The Waverunner was bobbing on the waves in front of me, like a motorized turtle on it back.

"Don't panic," my son said calmly.

"What if we drown?" I objected.

"We can't," he said. "We have life jackets on. See! We're floating."

"The machine is upside down," I said. "How are we going to turn it over?"

"Just like the man said," my son answered. "The arrow points this way."

With an easy gesture, we turned the machine right side up. "What if we can't climb back on?" I asked.

"We can," my son replied. "That's what Waverunners were made for: climbing on in the water."

I relaxed and as we drove off, I wondered why I had become so frightened. I thought maybe it's because I don't trust my ability to solve problems. Maybe it's because once I almost drowned when I wasn't wearing a life jacket.

But you didn't drown then either; a small voice inside reassured me. You survived.

Don't panic.

Problems were made to be solved. Life was made to be lived. Although sometimes we may be in over our heads - yes, we may even go under for a few moments and gulp a few mouthfuls of water, we won't drown. We're wearing - and always have been wearing - a life jacket. That support jacket is called "God."

Today, I will remember to take care of myself. When I get in over my head, God is there supporting me - even when my fears try to make me forget. 

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation.

 I love the smell of
the universe in the

Neil deGrasse Tyson

You are a match for this universe—a
perfect fit. The intelligence that is
you easily and naturally attracts
all of the various atoms to build a body
that houses that intelligence during
your sojourn here. You are aligned with
Universal Law in your physical beingness,
and you have a wonderful mind that
allows you to express creatively through
your physical body. It is really quite
miraculous when you think about it.
So, as long as you are here, you might
as well make the most of it. Are you doing
that? Making the most of it, that is? Are
you living fully, expressing creatively,
loving, and being loved? No? Why not?
Is something the matter? Have you
developed the wrong impression? What’s
going on?

Everyone is a perfect fit for this place
we call the universe. No, really, we are.
If you have been misinformed about this
by those who came before you, well, let’s
move beyond all that limitation, shall we?
Right now would be a good place to start.

So let’s do this!

I suggest that you begin by giving
yourself permission to live fully. Only you
can do this, you know. No one can do
it for you. Just you. So go ahead. Shout,
“I give myself permission to live fully
because I am a perfect fit in this universe!”
Good to finally live in the truth, isn’t it?

I give myself
permission to live
fully. I am a perfect
fit for this universe
and for this world. I
step into my greatness
and bring my
intense love into
expression. Right

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Recovery Meditations: July 27th


"I've lost so much weight
that I should be hanging from a charm bracelet."
Erma Bombeck

I have lost and gained the same weight so many times I've lost count. Lack of willpower was never an issue with me. I've whipped myself into shape many times. There was nothing I didn't do in order to lose weight. I just couldn’t keep it off.

The tide finally turned for me when I quit relying on my own power, turned my focus away from my weight problem and toward "trusting in God and cleaning house," as the Big Book states.

I did Step work under the guidance of my sponsor. I passed along to others the lessons I'd learned. I did service work. I kept practicing a conscious contact with the God of my understanding. I went to meetings and talked to others. I kept a journal. Then one day I looked up from the tasks at hand to discover I was abstinent. God did for me what I couldn't do for myself.

One day at a time...
I will do the footwork and leave the results up to God.

~ Shirley G.

What yo yo dieter can't relate to these words? I've lost so much weight that I should be hanging from a charm bracelet. Hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds I've released and regained over the years.  Compulsive overeating is not something that can be controlled with 'willpower'.......that horribly elusive word we can never seem to develop.  "Willpower" suggests hanging on for dear life, white-knuckling it through the days of deprivation until we cannot bear another moment, and then we go back to overeating.

Abstinence suggests a daily commitment to God & to ourselves, to eat 3 (or whatever) moderate meals containing no trigger foods, and nothing in between.  Abstinence suggests NO white-knuckling, NO willpower, and just a 24 hour commitment to sanity!

For today, I will quit relying on my own power, turn my focus away from my weight issues, and toward "trusting in God and cleaning house."  I will get out of my own head and into the Big Book, instead.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Food for Thought: July 26th

Doing God's Will

For a long time, most of us tried to achieve happiness by serving our self-will. We figured out what we wanted from life and then went about trying to attain it. When our efforts were frustrated, we turned to food and overeating.

The idea of giving our self-will to God and following His direction makes us fearful. We fear that we will lose out and be unhappy. We are reluctant to give up our illusions of autonomy and power. We wonder if there really is a Higher Power who can direct our way. We pray for guidance and then forget to listen for the response.

When we are willing to trust a Higher Power in even one small area of our lives, we begin to see results. As our faith grows, we become confident enough to relinquish more and more of the concerns, which by ourselves we are unable to manage. The more we work this program, the more sure we are that our peace and happiness lie in serving God, rather than ourselves.

I pray for courage to follow Your will.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation. 


The only way I know of to find abstinence from overeating is to surrender MY will and accept the Food Plan. When I allow God to take over my life, it runs a whole lot smoother in general.

Being a control freak has not served me well in life. It led me to total self-absorption and belief that I should be running the world. Letting GO of that notion and letting God into my life has made a huge difference.  When I forget that God is in charge, that's when I use self-will once more and get back into compulsive eating behaviors.

For today, I will remember that God is in charge and not me.  For today, I will serve God instead of myself.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 25th

Keep at It

Keep practicing your recovery behaviors, even when they feel awkward, even when they haven't quite taken yet, even if you don't get it yet.

Sometimes it takes years for a recovery concept to move from our mind into our heart and soul. We need to work at recovery behaviors with the diligence, effort, and repeated practice we applied to codependent behaviors. We need to force ourselves to do things even when they don't feel natural. We need to tell ourselves we care about ourselves and can take care of ourselves even when we don't believe what we're saying.

We need to do it, and do it, and do it - day after day, year after year.

It is unreasonable to expect this new way of life to sink in overnight. We may have to "act as if" for months, years, before recovery behaviors become ingrained and natural.

Even after years, we may find ourselves, in times of stress or duress, reverting to old ways of thinking, feeling, and behaving.

We may have layers of feelings we aren't ready to acknowledge until years into our recovery. That's okay! When it's time, we will.

Do not give up! It takes time to get self-love into the core of us. It takes repeated practice. Time and experience. Lessons, lessons, and more lessons.

Then, just when we think we've arrived, we find we have more to learn.

That's the joy of recovery. We get to keep learning and growing all of our life!

Keep on taking care of yourself, no matter what. Keep on plugging away at recovery behaviors, one day at a time. Keep on loving yourself, even when it doesn't feel natural. Act as if for as long as necessary, even if that time period feels longer than necessary.

One day, it will happen. You will wake up, and find that what you've been struggling with and working so hard at and forcing yourself to do, finally feels comfortable. It has hit our soul.

Then, you go on to learn something new and better.

Today, I will plug away at my recovery behaviors, even if they don't feel natural. I will force myself to go through the motions even if that feels awkward. I will work at loving myself until I really do. 

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation

 Mistakes are
the portals of

James Joyce

How do you react when you learn
that you have made a mistake?
Stay calm? Freak out? Many of us
freak out, at least a little bit, because we
have been trained to have an aversion to
mistakes, to being wrong. The reaction is
just that, an automatic response due to
conditioning. We don’t think about it and
decide to react—we just react. It’s like
touching a hot stove; we pull back and try
to make sure we never do that again.
There is a problem with this. The
problem is, that which we call a mistake
is really an opportunity to develop a new
awareness. The awareness might be that
a false fact was accepted as true, or that
there was a misunderstanding about
something, or that a technique needs to
be adjusted or relearned. The automatic
negative reaction greatly decreases the
likelihood that any productive change will
occur. We feel shame and embarrassment,
and we shut down for a time.

In reality, there are
no mistakes. Every decision leads to a
set of consequences that flow from that
decision. If the consequences are that
which we desire, we keep going; if the
consequences are not desired, we make a
different decision. If that involves making
amends to someone, we do that as part of
the process. That’s all. Simple.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Recovery Meditations: July 24th


“Resolve to be thyself:
And know that he who finds himself loses his misery.”
Matthew Arnold

Life before recovery was a theatrical production in which I played all parts to all audiences. I gave a performance which aimed to satisfy everyone's requirements but my own. I proffered whatever I felt others wanted, giving no thought to my own needs. Some may say that's a worthy attitude, but it was influenced by a desire to be accepted -- not for who I am -- but for whom I thought everyone wanted me to be. I used my performance to control situations and to avoid any nasty surprises. I furnished more than I could afford, often lavishing what wasn't mine to give. Frequently I didn't feel that I had gained the acceptance I so fervently sought, and this yielded feelings of incompetence.

To be everything to all people took time and sapped considerable quantities of energy physically, spiritually and emotionally. Often I found I couldn't keep up with this self-inflicted regimen of people-pleasing. I began to resent the performance and gained no satisfaction from the results.

Through my recovery I realized that I had never been happy with the results of my role-playing. It had been a compulsion to seek the approval from others because I couldn't grant myself the authorization to be me. The only person I can be is me. The only person I have a right to be is me.

One day at a time ...
I give myself permission to be who I truly am: ME!

~ Sue G.

Boy, does this reading hit home for me. I was taught to put on a face for others, and to play the role of people pleaser. To never show my true colors, and make believe at ALL times. I was never to show my warts, or admit to having skeletons in the closet. I was trained to smile while stabbing you in the back!  No one was to be trusted, everyone was evil, and so, a facade HAD to be maintained.

I lived like a performer in a show, nodding my head like a puppet and playing to an audience.  I needed to be accepted..........but not for ME, for someone I was PRETENDING to be!

I now live an authentic life. I am ME, the REAL me, take it or leave it. I give myself permission to BE me, without feeling guilt or shame. My goal is not to be accepted and liked by everyone...........just by ME and by God.

For today, I pray to seek approval from only myself and God. 

 I am willing to live
an authentic life.
I am willing to be
exposed as one who
seeks the wisdom
and love within me,
even if others do not
approve. I find the
perfection within.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Food for Thought: July 23rd

Food: Servant or Master?

Food used to be our master. The mental obsession with food and the craving for more controlled our life. As we recover, we begin to see just how much we were in slavery to food and our appetite. We know that no matter how long we abstain and recover from our disease, we will always be powerless over food. The idea that we will one day be able to eat spontaneously is the most dangerous delusion we can entertain.

By abstaining from compulsive overeating every day of our life, we make food our servant rather than our master. We eat what we need to nourish our body, but we do not permit eating for comfort, excitement, or any other emotional reason. Whatever it takes to remain abstinent is what we are willing to do each day.

Never forgetting that we are always one mouthful away from a binge ensures that food will remain our servant.

Today and every day, may I serve You instead of food.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.

As a compulsive overeater, I've spent a lot of years making food into my master. The only thing that keeps food in proper perspective is abstinence. I am never more than one bite away from disaster, and turning food back into my master instead of my servant.

It's amazing how, at 56 years old, I can find so much difficulty in feeding myself! Something that should be SO simple can be so incredibly difficult. Sigh.

If I divert from my plain, simple, boring Food Plan, I wake UP my taste buds and food is back in charge of ME. I am obsessing over it, and it's consuming my every thought. What to eat, how to sneak it, where to get's EXHAUSTING.  To live a life that's devoted to food is a life that's WASTED.

Abstinence is my sanity in the midst of chaos. Structure prevents chaos. Without a firm, solid Food Plan to follow, I am lost in the wilderness of compulsive eating, where there is no such thing as 'enough.'  I can eat junk food for hours on end and STILL not feel full or satisfied. So what is the point in starting down that road? There IS no point. Sometimes I 'forget' that fact and veer off course anyway. And then it takes me forever to get back ON course.


For today, I will follow my boring, plan and unexciting Food Plan and feel grateful FOR it.  Food is not entertainment or comfort or fun. Food is fuel for my body, to keep it alive and running. That's all.  My strength and comfort comes from God, not food. May I remember that today.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 22nd

Learning to Trust Again
Many of us have trust issues.

Some of us tried long and hard to trust untrustworthy people. Over and again, we believed lies and promises never to be kept. Some of us tried to trust people for the impossible; for instance, trusting a practicing alcoholic not to drink again.

Some of us trusted our Higher Power inappropriately. We trusted God to make other people do what we wanted, then felt betrayed when that didn't work out.

Some of us were taught that life couldn't be trusted, that we had to control and manipulate our way through.

Most of us were taught, inappropriately, that we couldn't trust ourselves.

In recovery, we're healing from our trust issues. We're learning to trust again. The first lesson in trust is this: We can learn to trust ourselves. We can be trusted. If others have taught us we cannot trust ourselves, they were lying. Addictions and dysfunctional systems make people lie.

We can learn to appropriately trust our Higher Power - not to make people do what we wanted them to, but to help us take care of ourselves, and to bring about the best possible circumstances, at the best possible times, in our life.

We can trust the process - of life and recovery. We do not have to control, obsess, or become hyper vigilant. We may not always understand where we are going, or what's being worked out in us, but we can trust that something good is happening.

When we learn to do this, we are ready to learn to trust other people. When we trust our Higher Power and when we trust ourselves, we will know who to trust and what to trust that person for.

Perhaps we always did. We just didn't listen closely enough to ourselves or trust what we heard.

Today, I will affirm that I can learn to trust appropriately. I can trust my Higher Power, my recovery, and myself. I can learn to appropriately trust others too.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation


 The best way to
find out if you can
trust somebody is
to trust them.

Ernest Hemingway

Be cautious.” “Be careful.” “Don’t trust.”
We receive a wealth of advice from
family, friends, and others as we go
through life. Advertising continuously
warns us to distrust our own opinions, to
see their products or services as the best
source of what we need to be successful,
or at least not to be embarrassed, as we
go through life. We are bombarded with
reasons not to trust ourselves and others.
In fact, people’s livelihoods often depend
on us letting ourselves be influenced in
this way.
When we do not trust, we develop the
false impression that we are more aware of
what harm might befall us. We think that if
we are vigilant for harm, it will stay away.
Actually, it is just the opposite. When we
do not trust, we may spot the occasional
untrustworthy person, but we will just as
often be fooled by others. More important,
we will miss many opportunities to
connect with trustworthy people. Mistrust
drives the good people away.
Those who learn to trust themselves
can also trust others. This is so because
when we trust from the inner power,
we easily spot traits in others who are
untrustworthy. Our perceptions are
heightened and true. Trust attracts trust.
When we know this, life becomes much
easier and more natural. We learn to trust
ourselves, and as a byproduct, we can more
easily see who is and is not trustworthy

I learn to trust.
I trust myself to
discern wisely when
making choices. I
trust others to reveal
themselves to me in
ways that I can relate
to from my open

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Recovery Meditations: July 21st


“I think, therefore I am.”
Rene Descartes

Before beginning my recovery process with our online groups, I used to look in the mirror and want to cry. I'm not a young, lovely creature anymore. I'm showing my age. Inside I'm still a young girl, but now I have a grandma's face.

The Twelve Steps to recovery have opened up a whole new world to me ~ and it is a world that is ageless. Its principles are timeless: honesty, hope, faith, courage, integrity, willingness, humility, love, forgiveness, self-discipline, perseverance, spiritual awareness and service. Maturing without benefit of these principles would be choosing to simply get old.

Through my program of recovery, I have been inspired to keep my body strong and well -- the way my Higher Power made it. I am encouraged to stay as attractive as possible for as long as possible, out of concern for myself and for others. By the time I reached the 9th Step, the worry lines in my face began to soften … now they look like smile lines. It seems that participating in our program of recovery has reversed my age.

One day at a time...
I will grow older, but also much wiser.

What a beautiful reading! For decades I was focused on my external appearance ONLY, neglecting the state of my internal spirit. A quest for external beauty only is futile. And irrelevant, to boot.  Beauty is temporary..........age sets in and beauty diminishes with wrinkles. The internal beauty is what's important, and what overrides the external signs of age and infirm. 

When I take care of my inside, my outside takes care of itself. And it's no longer quite SO important that I look perfectly young or perfectly beautiful. It's way more important that I FEEL beautiful inside of my soul. The Steps provide me a roadmap to interior beauty, by helping me develop character and integrity and love.  THESE are the signs of TRUE beauty, not what I look like in clothing.

For today, through my program of recovery, I am inspired to keep my body strong and well........the way God made it.  When I look in the mirror these days, what I seek is to have my worry lines soften instead of seeing a youthful and perfect face.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 20th

Letting Go of Resistance

Do not be in such a hurry to move on.

Relax. Breathe deeply. Be. Be in harmony today.

Be open. There is beauty around and in us today. There is purpose and meaning in today.

There is importance in today - not so much in what happens to us, but in how we respond.

Let today happen. We learn our lessons, we work things out, we change in a simple fashion: by living our life fully today.

Do not worry about tomorrow's feelings, problems, or gifts. Do not worry about whether we can trust life, our Higher Power, or ourselves tomorrow.

Everything we need today shall be given to us. That is a promise - from God, from the Universe.

Feel today's feelings. Solve today's problems. Enjoy today's gifts. Trust yourself, life, and your Higher Power today.

Acquire the art of living fully today. Absorb the lessons, the healing, the beauty, the love available to us today.

Do not be in such a rush to move on. There is no hurry. We cannot escape, we only postpone. Let the feelings go, breathe in peace and healing.

Do not be in such a hurry to move on.

Today, I will not run from my circumstances, my feelings, or myself. I will be open to others, Higher Power, my life, and myself. I will trust that by facing today to the best of my ability, I will acquire the skills I need to face tomorrow.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation


Escape is the hallmark of the addict..............where are we running off to today? What are we trying to avoid? Our feelings, most likely............or an unpleasant situation that we don't want to deal with head-on.  We escape into a sugar binge, our drug of choice, and purposely shut down and run away.  

Some of us take 'geographical cures'..........we move away frequently, thinking things will be 'better' or 'different' in the new location. Unfortunately, we take OURSELVES with us, wherever we go, and so, nothing changes.  We wake up in the new town one day, saying "Now what?"  Faced with the same problems, and even a few more, thanks to being in a strange location, we begin to feel hopeless, like things will NEVER change.

Things WON'T ever change unless WE decide to MAKE some changes, internally.  We come to a program like OA, on our knees, having reached rock bottom.  We may not believe the program 'works' because we've tried SO many different ways to lose weight and feel happy with ourselves.  But we're willing to try ANYTHING at this point.  This is when we open our minds and our hearts to new ideas.  We embrace the program and begin absorbing and using the program slogans.  These slogans are known as the handrails to the Steps.  When we use the slogan, "One day at a time", we realize we only HAVE today to worry about.  Yesterday is gone and tomorrow isn't here yet.  For 24 hours we can do ANYTHING. Some days, we may have to alter the slogan to "Five minutes at a time."  And so we shall.  As long as we know that our Higher Power WILL help us if we ask Him to, we're golden.

For today, I am in no hurry to see tomorrow, and I'm not interested in revisiting yesterday.  All I have is today and for the next 24 hours, I will remain present.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Recovery Meditations: July 19th


“And how shall you punish those whose remorse
is already greater than their misdeeds?”
Kahlil Gibran

We are not bad people trying to become good; rather, we are sick people trying to get well. It takes a long time for some of us to believe this truth. We have been programmed to believe the worst about ourselves … or ironically, to believe ourselves to be much better than others. This appears to be a common denominator in our disease.

We despise the person we perceive ourselves to be. Virtually every event in our lives drives us deeper into the abyss of remorse, self-abuse, self-hate, and self-serving. We must stop believing lies about ourselves. The fact that we are here on Earth is proof that we belong and that we have the right -- even the obligation -- to be what we can be.

One day at a time...
I will honor and respect myself.

~ Jeremiah

I spent a year trying to prove to my husband how much his drinking was hurting me. When I began to recover, I realized I was the one who needed to realize how much his drinking was hurting me.

I spent months trying to prove to a man I was dating how responsible and healthy I was. Then I realized what I was doing. He didn't need to realize how responsible and healthy I was. I did.

Trying to prove how good we are, trying to prove we're good enough, trying to show someone how much he or she has hurt us, trying to show someone we're understanding, are warning signs that we may be into our self defeating behaviors.

They can be an indication that we are trying to control someone. They can be an indication that we do not believe how good we are, that we're good enough, that someone is hurting us.

They can be a warning that we've allowed ourselves to get hooked into a dysfunctional system. They may indicate that we're stuck in the cloudy fog of denial or doing something that is not good for us.

Trying excessively to make a point with another may mean that we have not yet made that point with ourselves. Once we make that point with ourselves, once we understand, we will know what to do.

The issue is not about others understanding and taking us seriously. The issue is not about others believing we're good and good enough. The issue is not about others seeing and believing how responsible or loving or competent we are. The issue is not about whether others realize how deeply we are feeling a particular feeling. We are the ones that need to see the light.

Today, God, help me let go of my need to control outcomes by influencing the beliefs of others. I will concentrate on accepting myself, rather than trying to prove something about myself. If I catch myself in the codependent trap of trying to emphasize something about myself to another, I will ask myself if I need to convince myself at that point.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Food for Thought: July 18th

Don't Jump

When we have achieved a significant period of abstinence from compulsive overeating, it is as though we have slowly climbed many flights of stairs all the way up to the top floor of a skyscraper. Telling ourselves that we will make a small exception and break abstinence just one time is like saying we will jump out a window on the top floor of the skyscraper and fall down only as far as the next floor.

The nature of our disease is such that one small compulsive bite inevitably leads to eventual disaster. We may be able to postpone the binge for a day or a week or even longer, but once we give up our control, we put ourselves in a pattern of downward descent.

All we need do in order to stay on the top floor of the skyscraper is to maintain our abstinence. A small price to pay for such a magnificent view!

Protect me from a fatal jump.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.


I compare taking that first compulsive bite to jumping into a deep, dark pit without a ladder, wondering if I'll be able to somehow get OUT of there!

It's true that the first bite inevitably leads to eventual disaster. I may be able to postpone the binge for a while, but once I give up my control, I totally lose control sooner or later.  I weaken my commitment by saying Yes instead of No.  And, once I've said Yes the first time, it's way easier to KEEP saying Yes.  Conversely, when I practice saying No Thank You, it gets easier & easier to KEEP saying No Thank You.  Food loses its power over me, and abstinence prevails.

For today, I realize that all I need to do in order to stay on the top floor of the skyscraper with the magnificent view is maintain my abstinence Just for today.  Yesterday is gone and tomorrow isn't here yet.  So for the next 24 hours, I will practice saying No Thank You.  There is a potluck brunch at my office this morning, and I will avoid LOOKING at the buffet table.  There is no point in even considering the junk food that will be presented. If I don't see it, it does not exist.

For today, I will put abstinence FIRST in my life!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Food for Thought

The Narrow Path

Abstinence is the narrow path that leads out of the swamp of compulsive overeating. If we allow ourselves to deviate from the path, we immediately put ourselves on slippery ground and run the risk of falling into a bog of quicksand.

The longer we maintain firm abstinence, the more sure our steps become as we walk away from the crippling effects of our disease. It is so much easier to stay on the narrow path than to slip off and have to find it again. Without abstinence, we compulsive overeaters are lost.

If abstinence is not the most important thing in our lives, then food becomes our number one priority, and we gradually destroy ourselves.

Guide my steps, I pray, on the narrow path of abstinence.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.

The crippling effects of our disease...............what a true statement this is! If my abstinence is compromised, my entire LIFE feels out of control. All good things stem FROM abstinence.............without IT, I am lost.

It is so much easier to stay the course than it is to find it all over again once I lose my abstinence. Yet, I tend to forget that fact and veer off course sometimes.

For today, I will make abstinence THE most important thing in my life. Otherwise, food becomes my number one priority and I destroy my life in the process.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 16th

Insisting on the Best

We deserve the best life and love has to offer, but we are each faced with the challenge of learning to identify what that means in our life. We must each come to grips with our own understanding of what we believe we deserve, what we want, and whether we are receiving it.

There is only one place to start, and that is right where we are, in our current circumstances. The place we begin is with us.

What hurts? What makes us angry? What are we whining and complaining about? Are we discounting how much a particular behavior is hurting us? Are we making excuses for the other person, telling ourselves we're "too demanding"?

Are we reluctant, for a variety of reasons, especially fear, to tackle the issues in our relationships that may be hurting us? Do we know what's hurting us and do we know that we have a right to stop our pain, if we want to do that?

We can begin the journey from deprived to deserving. We can start it today. We can also be patient and gentle with ourselves as we travel in important increments from believing we deserve second best, to knowing in our hearts that we deserve the best, and taking responsibility for that.

Today, I will pay attention to how I allow people to treat me, and how I feel about that. I will also watch how I treat others. I will not overreact by taking their issues too personally and too seriously; I will not under react by denying that certain behaviors are inappropriate and not acceptable to me. 

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation.


The Struggle For "Normal" My blog, 7/16/13

I spoke with my mother yesterday and, as usual, the talk turned to food.  She told me how Dad had ordered a delicious dessert at their apartment building restaurant the night before, but she didn’t.  Dessert is Too Fattening, is what she said. Mom is of the opinion that she can pig out on Kentucky Fried Chicken, Red Robin smothered burgers & fries, and Jimmy John’s foot-long sandwiches but she needs to summon up every ounce of her WILLPOWER to say NO to fattening dessert.  Had she said No, instead, to the thousands of calories of junk food she’d consumed in non-desserts, she could easily have eaten the friggin dessert instead of white-knuckling it.  At 86 years old, and with a huge food obsession in full force, I ain’t gonna be able to teach my mother anything, sadly enough. Nor do I care to.  If I never hear another word about weight again, as long as I live, it will be a day too soon.

The only time I remember my childhood is when I speak to my mother & hear her using words like ‘fattening’ and ‘willpower’ and talking about how FAT she is and how she’s GOT to start watching what she eats immediately.  It’s during those times that I recall the misery of growing up in a house where food was the Be All & End All of Life.  I remember going to Catholic grade school every morning, lugging a brown grocery store bag with my lunch in it.  Not a brown paper lunch bag……..a brown paper GROCERY bag, mind you.  I was mortified to drag that sucker out & empty the contents of it out in front of me.  Everything but the refrigerator itself was packed in that bag, and if Mom could have FIT the fridge, IT would have been in there too.  While the other kids were picking on PB&J sandwiches with the crusts cut off, I’d be opening Tupperware containers of spaghetti & meatballs.  I wondered what it felt like to be ‘normal’ and not obsessed with eating. 

On Wednesdays at school, a boy came around with a laundry basket filled with soft pretzels.  He’d sell them for a dime apiece but of course, I didn’t get an allowance………but I DID have two dimes tucked inside the slots of my penny loafers. Those dimes were to be used for EMERGENCY phone calls ONLY, back in the day when there were pay phones that cost a dime.  Once in a while, I’d pry a dime out of my loafer & buy one of those soft, delicious pretzels for myself. I’d feel normal during those times, and not like some outsider looking in on all the other kids having fun.  The joy was short-lived, however, because I’d have to figure out how to explain the missing dime in my shoe when I got home.  My life was uber micro-managed, and I had not ONE ounce of freedom ANYWHERE in my life.  Even the bathroom door had to be left open while using the toilet……that’s how close an eye was kept on me.

When Mom saw that I was getting chubby, thanks to all the over-eating she’d insisted on, she started hiding food from me.  She’d put cookies or other forbidden foods up in a high cabinet, and they’d all be counted out.  She’d KNOW if one was missing that way, and since I was the only kid in the house, unless Grandma ‘stole’ it, she’d know who to blame.  Me. Being as ‘abnormal’ as I was, I wasn’t entitled to eat cookies like the rest of the world.

Weight Watchers came next, at 12 years old.  I was the only child in a room full of fat women, and of course, my thin Mother who sat next to me, making sure she could learn all about the various recipes she’d need to cook for me so I could get thin.  Chicken breasts baked with soy sauce and lemon I distinctly remember, and to this day, not something I am fond of.  And liver.  Wednesday night was liver night for me, and I hate liver even more than soft-boiled eggs, which I was forced to eat every morning of my life for 13 years. At 13, I said NO MORE. Beat me, kill me, torture me, but I WILL NOT eat ONE more soft-boiled egg, EVER, for the rest of my life, Amen. And I haven’t, so there!

I remember Mom having a fit one day whilst cooking homemade chicken chow mein in a big old pot on the stove.  The chow mein was for the rest of the family, the normal weight people who could eat whatever they wanted. Me? I had to eat LIVER, because I was FAT, and FAT was BAD.  Fat meant you couldn’t eat whatever you wanted, and you had to be treated differently.  I remember complaining about having to eat the hated liver dinner, and then Mom dumped the entire pot of chicken chow mein onto the linoleum floor and started screaming bloody murder.  Alrighty then………liver it IS. Even smothered with mustard, liver just sucks.  And it’s another food I avoid like the plague, now that I’m growed up and away, for the most part, from my mother’s suffocating ‘love’.

To this day, dinner at Mom’s is a hairy ordeal.  Last time we were there, guess what she made? Chicken breasts baked in soy sauce & lemon.  It’s not FATTENING, you know! Thank God it wasn’t liver.
I was trained from a young age that I was SUPPOSED to be dieting at ALL times.  Fat was bad, and I was fat, so dieting was my penance to pay for my crime. Weight Watchers was only the beginning.  Lots & lots & LOTS of crazy diet schemes were to follow.  My dieting career began at 12 and it’s pretty much STILL going on at 56. 

Maybe when I die they can have a nice message chiseled into my tombstone.  Perhaps it will say, Here lies Chris, not buried in a piano case for being too Fat, but in a regular NORMAL sized casket.  Or perhaps I WILL be buried in a piano case, who knows?

What I DO know is this: raising our children to believe their ONLY value lies in their body size is a big, gigantic, miserable mistake. 

We are NOT our bodies. We are our souls. Our spirits. Our personalities and our compassion. Our love & our ability to nuture & to show kindness.  Our body is just a temporary housing unit………the REAL value lies inside of that house. Did you know that?  For many, many years, I did not. I was SO focused on having a normal sized body, that I’d forgotten all I was taught in Catholic school. 

When you see a little girl who’s obviously shy & casting her eyes downward because of the shame of her weight, go give her a great big old bear hug.  Tell her how beautiful she is, period. Don’t tell her what a pretty FACE she has, which sounds like you’re saying “but too bad about that BODY.”  Smooth her hair with the palm of your hand and maybe, just maybe, you will help her to feel normal that day, to feel Good Enough.   Because, chances are, that little girl is feeling trapped inside of a body that she doesn’t like, confusing IT with who she IS. 

My mother shows love in the only way she knows how: by pushing food. Let's remember that food has nothing to DO with love, and that we can show our children love in lots of healthier ways. Spending quality time together is what really counts. You can share healthy habits and fresh air instead of pizzas and cupcakes. And I guarantee you will enjoy the results.  So will your kids!

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Language of Letting Go: July 15th

 I was thirty five years old the first time I spoke up to my mother and refused to buy into her games and manipulation.
I was terribly frightened and almost couldn't believe I was doing this. I found I didn't have to be mean. I didn't have to start an argument. But I could say what I wanted and needed to say to take care of myself. I learned I could love and honor myself, and still care about my mother - the way I wanted to - not the way she wanted me to.

Who knows better how to push our buttons than family members? Who, besides family members, do we give such power?

No matter how long we or our family members have been recovering, relationships with family members can be provocative.

One telephone conversation can put us in an emotional and psychological tailspin that lasts for hours or days.

Sometimes, it gets worse when we begin recovery because we become even more aware of our reactions and our discomfort. That's uncomfortable, but good. It is by beginning this process of awareness and acceptance that we change, grow, and heal.

The process of detaching in love from family members can take years. So can the process of learning how to react in a more effective way. We cannot control what they do or try to do, but we can gain some sense of control over how we choose to react.

Stop trying to make them act or treat us any differently. Unhook from their system by refusing to try to change or influence them.

Their patterns, particularly their patterns with us, are their issues. How we react, or allow these patterns to influence us, is our issue. How we take care of ourselves is our issue.

We can love our family and still refuse to buy into their issues. We can love our family but refuse their efforts to manipulate, control, or produce guilt in us.

We can take care of ourselves with family members without feeling guilty. We can learn to be assertive with family members without being aggressive. We can set the boundaries we need and want to set with family members without being disloyal to the family.

We can learn to love our family without forfeiting love and respect for ourselves.

Today, help me start practicing self care with family members. Help me know that I do not have to allow their issues to control my life, my day, or my feelings. Help me know it's okay to have all my feelings about family members, without guilt or shame.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation.

As a compulsive overeater, I am a ball of REACTION. I get caught up in my mother's games, nerve myself up beyond belief, and then seek comfort in food. It's a vicious cycle.  Only when I found the OA program was I able to see things for what they are, and make changes accordingly.

I will never be able to 'change' my mother, or get her to act appropriately...........she is who she is and that's ok. What I CAN do, however, is change MY expectations and stop trying to 'fix' her or get her to understand ME. Not. Gonna. Happen.  So, instead of spinning my wheels uselessly every day, I set down some boundaries which I stick to like GLUE. Toxic people suck the life out of us and lead us down the road to addiction if we don't set boundaries.  I do not 'have to' accept manipulation or control, nor do I have to play the guilt game and accept it. 

I am who I am, as well. I love my family, but I do not have to buy into their issues.  It is my job to take care of ME, and to allow my folks to take care of themselves.  I am always available to help out, especially in an emergency, but my life is NOT devoted to making THEM happy.


For today, I can take care of myself without feeling guilty or forfeiting self-respect.  For today, I do not 'have to' buy into the manipulative games or believe the messages that I am not good enough.  That message is a lie and I am allowed to love myself.  I am a child of God and perfect exactly AS IS!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Food for Thought: July 14th

Energize, Don't Tranquilize

Food is nourishment for our bodies, not a drug. When we overeat, we sap our energy and dull our responses. Too much food makes us lazy and lethargic. We should eat for energy, not oblivion.

If we have been using food as a narcotic to temporarily deaden the pain of living, then we need to learn other ways to cope. Much of our pain is needless, brought on by egocentric fears and demands. If we accept the fact that we cannot change another person's behavior, then we will not hurt ourselves by anger at what that person does.

At the same time, we will learn to remove ourselves from people and situations, which cause us unnecessary pain. We do not have to be martyrs! Abstinence gives us the energy to make positive changes.

A certain amount of pain, both physical and emotional, is unavoidable. Often, it accompanies growth. To tranquilize ourselves with food is to impede growth.

May I remember to eat for energy instead of oblivion.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.


Excess food anesthetizes my mind and prevents me from feeling emotions of any kind, or from thinking in general. I have a mind that races, and I've abused food to shut it down. Relaxation techniques and meditation is a far better tool to use than excess food! Compulsive eating prevents ALL emotions from getting through, including Joy.  Not only the negative feelings get pushed aside, but also the positive ones.

Compulsive eating is no way to cope with life. It kills my zest for life and puts fat onto my body, creating self-loathing instead of self-love.  I am a child of God and He loves me as is my job to love MYSELF and to behave myself in a manner that is conducive TO self love.  If I insist on practicing behavior that leads me to hate myself, then I am in direct violation of God's will FOR me, and I am ignoring my purpose in life. Addictive behavior of all kinds prevents growth and keeps me rooted in fear and misery instead of joy and gratitude.

For today, I will not tranquilize my mind with food.  Food is to be used as nourishment for my body, not as a drug. 

For today, I will not sap my energy & dull my responses by consuming junk food.  I choose to eat healthy foods that give me energy and not lethargy & laziness.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Each Day a New Beginning: July 13th

The trouble is not that we are never happy--it is that happiness is so episodical.
—Ruth Benedict

Happiness is our birthright. The decision to be happy is ours to make, every day, when confronted with any experience. Too many of us grew up believing that life needed to be a certain way for us to be happy. We looked for the right lover, the right job, and the right dress. We looked outside of ourselves for the key to happiness. In time, we even looked to alcohol, drugs, and food perhaps-to no avail.

Happiness lies within. We must encourage it to spring forth. But first we need to believe that happiness is fully within our power. We must trust that the most difficult circumstances won't keep it from us when we have learned to tap the source within.

Life is a gift we are granted moment-by-moment. Let us be in awe of the wonder of it, and then revel in it. We can marvel at creation for a moment and realize how special we are to be participants. Happiness will overcome us if we let it. We can best show our gratitude for the wonder of this gift by smiling within and without.

That I am here is a wonderful mystery to which joy is the natural response. It is no accident that I am here.

From Each Day a New Beginning: Daily Meditations for Women by Karen Casey © 1982, 1991 by Hazelden Foundation.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Food for Thought: July 12th

Growing Up

There is no magic. Nothing - be it person, place, or thing - is going to give us instant and permanent gratification. We keep thinking in the back of our mind that there is some way we can manipulate life into granting us all of our desires, even when they contradict each other.

When we seriously and with honest effort work our way through the Twelve Steps, we begin to grow up emotionally and spiritually. Abstinence from compulsive overeating makes this growth possible. It is not easy, but it is definitely worth the effort.

Acceptance and renunciation are necessary if we are to live with satisfaction in the real world. Grandiose illusions are of no help. We come to understand that certain foods, emotions, and attitudes are not for us if we are to maintain our sanity.

There is no magic, but there is a Power greater than ourselves. Who is directing our growth.

Grant me the willingness to grow up.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.


Thin Body Vs. Fat Mind: Waging War
I may have a thin body, to all outward appearances, but inside my head lurks a Fat Mind.  What does that mean? It means that I still THINK like a fat woman.  I still look at unfinished desserts on my husband’s plate & think to myself, “HOW can such a thing be possible? HOW can he leave even a MORSEL of that luscious cake on his plate?” If I ask him why, he’ll tell me he’s full.  What does FULL have to do with CAKE, I wonder? In my Fat Mind, my stomach could be overflowing with fullness & I’d STILL eat every crumb of cake on my plate.

Sometime during my childhood, I developed the need to feed my MIND instead of my body.  If something was bothering me, I turned to food. If I was upset, a lollypop was stuck into my mouth, like a pacifier, to keep me happy. Somewhere along the line I decided that food = comfort.  Not to my Body, but to my MIND. Feeling anxious or worried? Nothing a bag of chips couldn’t cure.  Or at least tamp DOWN for a time.  I found I could allay my nervous Mind by feeding my body with excessive amounts of food.  But just for a while……..just for the time it took me to eat whatever it was that was ‘comforting’ me.  Then I’d have to go get MORE, because my Mind was still hungry. No matter that my stomach was screaming to STOP! Telling me it’s had ENOUGH! My mind was still famished and so, there was no such thing as “enough” where food was concerned.

Know what I mean?

The human Mind never feels ‘full’… just hungers for more more MORE, and we wind up having a monstrous binge and wondering why? We ask ourselves, HOW could I feed my body THAT much food and still want MORE?  The answer is, because your Mind is still demanding to be fed. 

A very large part of this journey requires us to do the HEAD work…….to answer the questions of Why we do what we do, and how we’re going to STOP doing what we’ve BEEN doing for decades.  How do we STOP considering food to be a comfort?

The answer is, we don’t.  By & large, we change our daily habits, but we can’t change our decades-old INSTINCTS.  Our instincts will always lead us to eat excessively.  Our instincts will always tell us to overeat, promising us comfort and relief from whatever ails us.  Our fat MINDS try to convince us that a bit of junk food ‘won’t hurt’, or that it will be ‘no big deal.’  Once we give up the Thin Mind and allow the Fat Mind to take over, it wants to take over COMPLETELY.

My Fat Mind translates my emotions as hunger. ALL of my emotions. Happiness, sadness, anxiety, fear, stress, even good stress………….let’s say I win the lottery……….that’s a GOOD thing, but my Fat Mind would tell me to run out to eat to CELEBRATE! Then I’d get thinking about all that $$$$ and how people would come out of the woodwork to ‘borrow’ from me, and boy howdy THAT would be stressful, wouldn’t it? I know, let’s invite the Fat Mind to INVENT some drama so I can have a valid REASON to eat! 

What a crock.

For five years I’ve read the blogs and board posts here at Medifast, and I see the same struggles being expressed by nearly everyone.  Once they go off plan, they can’t get their groove back.  For the past 13 months, I’ve been a health coach and I see my clients struggling with the same problems.  For the past 40 years of chronic yo yo dieting, I’ve EXPERIENCED the same struggles myself.  Once I let the Fat Mind out to play, it’s wreaking havoc & destroying my best plans to stay the course.

We see people recommitting to diets after regaining all of their weight, sometimes for the second or third time. What went wrong, we ask? How could we KEEP allowing such a thing to HAPPEN?  The answer is, we’ve invited the Fat Mind back into our lives and IT is controlling the show now. Even when we desperately WANT to lose weight, STILL we struggle and compromise our programs, ‘just this once’, or for ‘just a taste.’ 

For the past few months, I’ve been ‘trying’ to lose the 14 lbs I gained after I quit smoking & lost my teeth back in December.  Trying isn’t Doing, however, and I’m painfully aware of that fact.  Why can’t I seem to get my  groove back? Because my Fat Mind is back, sticking his tongue out at me and laughing in my face, telling me how useless my efforts are.  How it’s ‘ok’ to be a bit larger than I once was. That it’s no ‘big deal’……….or that the bread & butter won’t hurt me, or that I’ve been ‘good’ for a few days so it’s ok to let loose a bit.

My Fat Mind is a freaking liar, of course, and that’s a fact.

The only way to shut the MFer up is to STARVE him.  Once I feed the bum, he’s raring to go, demanding more more and MORE. 

If YOUR Fat Mind is running the show right now, what are you going to do about it? It can seem absolutely IMPOSSIBLE to regain that strict mindset we once had, back in the day when we were 100% OP no matter WHAT. When that ‘take no prisoners’ attitude was in charge, and our appetites were simmered down & sleeping.  But now we’ve woken UP our taste buds and they are screaming for more. The Fat Mind is screeching in our ear about JUST EAT IT and HURRY UP, NO ONE WILL EVEN KNOW! Guess what folks? WE know.  Our BODIES know. And our Fat Minds have once again been FED instead of starved.
For today, I am acknowledging my Fat Mind and letting it know that I WON’T feed it, because it will NEVER be satisfied ANYWAY! So what is the point of letting it have a small taste? It’s those ‘small tastes’ that KEEP the Fat Mind alive & well and wrecking our lives!

For today, I am going to resurrect my Thin Mind mindset, and feed IT with packets and healthy L&G meals and plenty of water. I’m telling the imposter to sit down and SHUDDUP and I MEAN it! I’m not playing, like I used to tell my kids when they were small & acting up.  I’m putting the Fat Mind in TIME OUT and throwing away the key.

For today, I won’t rely on some elusive ‘willpower’ to stay the course. Today, I will rely on COMMITMENT and just DO IT.  I will work my plan like I work my job; with devotion and seriousness. I will work my plan like I do the laundry…..whether I feel like it or NOT!  I will eat my healthy food and consider it MEDICINE for what ails me.  What ails me is my Fat Mind, and my healthy food plan is the CURE for that ailment! 

Good ACTIONS create good thoughts, not the other way around. If I want this, I will have to work for it, and ignore the messages my Fat Mind is sending me.


Who’s with me?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Food for Thought: July 11th

Goals and Ends

Most of us came into this program with a specific weight goal in mind. We thought that if only we could weigh an ideal number of pounds, all of our other troubles would miraculously vanish.

When we reach goal weight, we discover that we still have to live with ourselves and deal with our problems. If we have been developing a strong program as we have been losing weight, we have a basis on which to work for further emotional and spiritual growth.

Our emotional and spiritual goals are not static. Since we never achieve perfection, there is always opportunity for further progress. The beauty of the OA program is that it is a program for life; its possibilities are limitless. To know and do the will of our Higher Power is our ultimate goal as well as our immediate one.

May I remember that You are my goal today and always.

From Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters by Elisabeth L. ©1980, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation.

Reaching goal weight does not change who we are on the inside. If we didn't work on our issues along the way, then the weight loss is likely a temporary thing. Our sub-conscious minds lead us back to obesity because that's been our comfort zone for such a long time.

There really is no 'goal' in OA, not from a weight perspective. When we work the 12 steps, we are constantly improving our spiritual condition, realizing we are works in progress for LIFE, one day at a time.

For today, I realize that my obesity had nothing to do with my food consumption.  My food consumption was excessive because I was trying to fill a spiritual void inside of me.  For today, I will work on improving my insides, and my outsides will take care of itself.