So, I have about thirty minutes till my chili is done simmering, and I want to use that time to make some public reflection on some of the psychological stuff that is going through my brainz.
It took me a lot of thinking and a lot of…effort, to decide to lose this weight. As I mentioned before, this has been spurred at least in part by a conversation with my Taekwondo coach. But I had been thinking about it before that.
A lot of my thinking about it was a desire to do it, and then making up some sort of excuse, and I began to wonder if I was afraid of losing weight.
Why would someone be afraid of losing weight? You are healthier, you generally look better, and life becomes a whole lot easier. But in reality, losing weight is a big change, and it comes with a lot of pressure, both internal and external. I wasn’t quite sure what I was afraid of, but I had a feeling that it was a fear that was keeping me back.
I decided to look it up on the interwebs, to see if I could find something that could at least point me in the right direction.
It turns out that a fear of losing weight isn’t really all that uncommon. I found a host of common fears, and I think a lot of them apply to me in one way or another.
- I’ve never succeeded before, why should I try now? (afraid of failure).
- If I don’t eat like I always do, what will I do with my friends when we meet for lunch? (afraid to be different, of possibly losing friends, or of suggesting something new and meeting for an activity that doesn’t involve eating).
- Unwanted sexual attention (getting hit on is awkward).
- Not looking like “me” anymore (cause, believe it or not, I do like the way I look).
- Fear of people expecting more/different things out of me.
Those sorts of things. I think I also have a fear of failure. That I will either lose the weight and not be able to keep it off, or even if I do lose weight I will still look/feel “fat,” that sort of thing.
I think I also have a fear of this transition. I generally have really good self-esteem (as most people who know and/or dislike me can tell you). I even have a really good body image. However, usually when I try to lose weight, I become uber-conscious of how much weight I have/have to lose. That generally makes me feel upset/self-conscious, which drives me to eat.
But I decided to lose the weight. And I am trying to “beat” myself mentally in two ways.
1) Do, or Do Not, there is no “Try”
One of the things that Coach Hill and I talked about was how people always give themselves an out. We have a tendency to talk about “trying” to do something or “trying our best.” If we use this language, and we don’t succeed, we always have an out, because then we haven’t failed in our goal. The trouble is that trying our best isn’t something that’s quantifiable something that you can prove or disprove. You just tell yourself that you tried your best when you’re shoving down that entire pizza, and then everything’s okay.
So I have shifted my language. It has been really difficult to not say “I’m attempting to lose 50 pounds before my cousin’s wedding.” But I have done so, especially here on the blog and when I am typing to people. Even when I am speaking I catch myself and I say that I am going to lose fifty pounds before Christina’s wedding. There is not an option for failure.
Hence, the title of this blog. I am not going to starve myself, but I am going to lose fifty pounds and be a healthier person. And rather than dying, I will be living more than I was or could before.
2) Positive Affirmation
This goes along with the “do or do not” above, but it is of a different vein. When I did my research on fears of losing weight, I found this article to be very helpful. Instead of dismissing or not acknowledging my fears, instead to replace the with something positive. It’s sorta like reprogramming your head so that instead of pushing yourself evermore towards failure, you subconsciously trick yourself into success. Or, at least that is the theory.
I am going to lose the weight I promised myself. And that is a fact.