I might not be sporting a new sparkling diamond today, or have an expensive dinner date, stacks of boxes of chocolates, bags of Victoria’s Secrets or dozens of lovely roses on my desk today at work, but I have something I did not have a year ago, I love myself and have a great pride in who I am and what I have accomplished!
Let me explain.
A friend of mine was celebrating her birthday last March 2013 and a photographer at the party captured me in a few pictures much to my dismay and absolute disdain. When I saw the pictures, I was horrified and I begged my friend to not post them on her Facebook page! She looked wonderful in her pictures but I just wanted to bury the ones I was in. It was her celebration and I had a marvelous time but—-when I saw those pictures after the party, I was extremely embarrassed and felt humiliated at how badly I looked in those photos. Asking her to not post those pictures, I now see I was trying my best to pretend they didn’t exist and I was trying hard to hide and become totally invisible! look back and see where that came from, I didn’t accept nor love myself. I was working on the outside but I still wasn’t even being nice to myself on the inside.
At the time the pictures were taken, March 2013, I had been doing Weight Watchers just a couple of months and I had lost 13.6 lbs. I remember thinking how totally horrible I looked and I didn’t want anyone to see me looking so bad. I told myself all kinds of negative things even though I knew I was working on things. The pictures did remind me how far I still had to go! I didn’t let those pictures discourage me; I kept pushing, pushing harder and harder to reach my goal! I am glad I looked beyond those pictures and kept moving forward!
My friend sent those pictures to me today, yes on Valentine’s Day, with a note telling me how awesome I look, how wonderful I have been doing (on Weight Watchers) and how proud she is of me and my accomplishments. I sent her a note back and thanked her for sending them to me! I feel these photos are excellent reminders of where I was a year ago! These photos are almost “before” pictures since I had lost the first 13.6 lbs of my journey and had managed to avoid the camera at most any cost!
I am happy and proud to share them with you today, because I now weigh 94 lbs less and feel physically so much better! I love the person in those pictures more today than I did this time last year. Her determination and focus has gotten me to where I am today and will continue to help move me on to my goal which is about 27 lbs away now! While I do not “love” the camera yet, I hope I become less stressed about being photographed in the near future! I am trying to be “kinder” to myself on the inside as well.
Don’t hide from your past; it was your path to the present and doorway to the future!
One of the hardest things in life we need to learn is honesty. This honesty transpires to every aspect of our lives. If we cannot be honest with ourselves, then who can we be honest with? If we lie to ourselves, who will tell us the truth when we need it the most? How can we ever know the truth if we lie to ourselves all the time? When we over-eat, we can either admit what we have done or deny it ever happened. When our pants get too tight we can chose either to believe that the washer shrunk them or we have to face we have not been eating properly. When we are fighting indigestion on a more frequent basis, we can either chose to make dietary changes or take increased amounts of medications to settle our stomachs. How were choose to look at things determines our “personal” honesty.
When we want to lose weight, we have to make some tough choices appropriate life changes to accomplish the goals we choose to set. Once we have chosen goals, we must make an action plan to reach those goals. An action plan might look like this:
My Ten-Step Action Plan for Success
- Plan out my meals and snacks each day.
- Research what proper portion sizes for all types of foods.
- Keep an accurate record of everything I eat and portion sizes.
- Weigh and measure my food to insure I am getting proper portions.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables each day.
- Increase the amount of movement I get each day.
- Incorporate healthy fats into my foods daily.
- Have at least two dairy servings a day.
- Take a multi-vitamin every day.
- Drink at least 8 glasses (8 ounces each) of water each day.
If these ten items sound familiar, they should if you are a Weight Watcher! One of the basics of Weight Watchers is to track/record everything you eat, the amount and the points plus value. Honesty about what and how much you are eating is essential to the program and your personal success. “Fudging” about what and how much you have eaten in your tracker, only hurts you. There is an expressing “your body keeps an accurate record of what you eat, no matter what you write down.” You can write down that you only had one doughnut but your body knows you ate six and the scale will reflect the six doughnuts not one.
Once you have set up your action plan, the next step is to follow it every day. Some days will be better than others. Some weeks will be better than others, but that is ok as long as you keep trying. You will not fail unless you choose to quit. Sometimes even quitting is not final, sometimes it is only temporary. Life can get in the way, there are things we can control and things we cannot. How we choose to react to the things we cannot control will help determine your success. Set your strategies.
My Success Strategies (planning for the unexpected)
- Always have healthy snack choices on hand in your desk drawer.
- Keep some quick meal choices in both the pantry and freezer.
- Keep your refrigerator stocked with great choices of fruits and vegetables.
- Keep a variety of lean meats in your freezer.
- Plan for the possibility of eating out; select 3 or 4 local places where you know the menu choices and their points plus value, so you can be successful when you choose or have to eat out.
- Make a grocery list and stick to it (this helps your budget as well!).
- Focus on whole foods.
- Eat fewer processed foods.
- Prepare my own foods when possible.
- Study foods and know the best choices in many categories.
No matter how much life gets in the way, do not give up. Keep moving forward toward your goals. You are worth it.