It seems like everywhere I turn, I keep getting the same message. I keep hearing and reading about how it’s essential to understand the importance of what you say to yourself. Recently, two of my favorite mentors, Joel Osteen and Oprah hosted a Life Class about the power of saying “I AM…” Joel said that whatever follows “I AM…” chases you down. I can’t even count how many times a day I say “I am fat” or decided that something happened to me solely because of my weight. I mean it seems kind of ridiculous now that I’m writing it out. But it’s the truth.
Once I started paying attention to it, I realized that the negative “I’m so fat” statements, started almost as soon as I rolled out of bed. I was so frustrated and saddened when I went to the doctor and saw the scale still at my highest weight. The numbers kept swirling in my head and taunting me. For the rest of the day, I blamed EVERYthing on being fat. I tripped while walking, probably because my legs are too fat. I coughed, probably because it’s too much weight on my lungs, my knees hurt, probably because it’s too much weight on them. He doesn’t like me, probably because I’m so fat I told myself. It just went on and on and on. I was actually surprised at how much I was beating myself up about it. I started to wonder if, all this positive self talk stuff was hocus pocus, and thought it probably won’t work for me. But, then I had to get out of my misery, and realize that apparently the fat talk was only attracting more fat. So just maybe, the “I am working towards losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle” talk could work too. I think I’m safe to say not everything is attributed to weight. Maybe something’s are, but not every single thing that goes wrong in my day.
I challenged myself to go back through all my “fat explanations” and get some new perspectives. Perhaps my body hurt when I rolled out of bed, because I only got a few hours of sleep and I’m not 19 years old anymore. Maybe I tripped because I’m clumsy, and have been my entire life, regardless of my weight. Maybe my cough is due to post nasal drip and my allergies, it was just one cough. I’m sure my knees hurt because I snuck and drank a couple sodas. Sodas make my knees hurt even if I’m in perfect 5K training condition, regardless of my weight. Maybe he doesn’t like me because I acted like a spoiled brat, not because of the way my stomach looks. I realize that being overweight can cause lots of issues, but it doesn’t cause every issue.
The next day I made a point to be kinder to myself. When I rolled out of bed and felt groggy, I said “I’m working on losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.” You don’t have to be extreme and say “I weigh 140 pounds” like the stupid BMI chart says I should. Later that day, I looked online about ways to overcome negative self talk, and rubber band therapy came up in my Google search. Maybe you’ve heard of it before. You place a rubber band around your wrist, and give yourself a little pop when you say something negative or do a particular behavior that you’re trying to stop. I figured why not try it? I got a rubber band out of the supply closet at work…shhh don’t tell the lawyers. Lol. Anyway I put it around my wrist, and it popped and broke. It probably broke, because my arm is so fat, I said. Dang it! I owed myself a pop before I even got started good. Maybe the real answer was that the rubber band was dried out and old, and that a newer one with more elasticity would be better. I got another, larger, more stretchy one that fit my wrist. The thought of that little pop help keep me in line. That is until that afternoon when I went in the bathroom and looked in the mirror. I said something crazy about how fat my stomach looked in that shirt…..POP! It’s just a little ouch guys. If you try it, don’t abuse yourself. It’s just a quick correction to literally snap you back into reality. After the pop, I replaced the negative thought with a positive one. “I’m making changes to be healthier, even doing crazy stuff like rubber band aversion therapy because it’s working” I said in the mirror. It only took about 2 or 3 more little snaps for me to get it together and stop the madness. After a couple days, I felt like working out and getting active again, since I finally stopped telling myself I’m too heavy to workout. I didn’t want to go to the gym, but I got a new fitness game for my Xbox Kinect. Last night I jumped rope and did yoga in my living room, as I watched the calories burn on the screen. I was stuck in rut, but I’m digging my way out…..One little snap at a time! Happy Election Day, I hope my fellow American got out and ROCKED the Vote today.