I had a conversation with a friend this week about weight loss. She's overweight, doesn't like it, and has wanted to do something about it for years. She watched me lose 90 lbs and cheered me on, then as my marriage ended and the ugliness that followed, (follows) happened, she quietly watched me gain back 40. When I was slowly and steadily losing the weight before, she was supportive, interested, and curious. I kept her abreast of what I was doing, when she asked. But she wasn't "ready." She tried to lose some weight but it just didn't happen. Now again she has seen the weight I have lost since Jan 1st. She is curious, interested and genuinely happy for me. Talks about how she should lose weight, how she wants to, and how she hates the way she looks and feels, but the next statement is that she has tried and it just doesn't seem to work for her, or her life right now is too busy to really commit, or the family is a source of sabotage. There are other comments, we have all heard them, some of us have, maybe still, say them. I don't judge her. I try to support her. I offer her whatever encouragement I can without being "preachy." She has it in her head that she needs to lose weight a certain way. She has a plan and a best cast scenario, and unless everything falls into place for that, the whole thing is useless.
My Mom is the same way. She has thought she was overweight my whole life. I say thought because even when I was a kid and she was always on one diet or another, she wasn't overweight. I look back at pictures of her then and think what the hell? But anyway, she is always waiting for the conditions to be just right. "Can't start now, because summer is coming, and there are so many birthdays in summer, I don't want to miss the cake." Or, "I cant start now, it is almost Christmas and there are always so many goodies around it is just too hard." Plus when she does start, she wants big results fast and she restricts her food intake so much that it isn't long before she is feeling weak and deprived. This is the way she has 'lost weight' her whole life, and she is larger now than ever.
So what is the point of all this ranting you ask? Well I guess I kind of feel like we, as in a large part of society, seem to be of 2 minds when it comes to weight loss. It is either suppose to be easy, as in an operation, or a pill, or it is such hard work that it can't be done.
Well of course part of me does feel if it was easy, then everyone would do it, but there is no easy fix. But, on the other hand, I also feel like it is easy, or at least easier than most of us think it is. I know that there is a significant amount of truth to the fact that the conditions have to be right. By that I mean that we won't lose weight, or at least sustain the weight loss if we are doing it for the wrong reasons, or for someone else. I also acknowledge that realistically the right time to start to watch what you are eating may not be the week of that cruise that you have been dreaming of and saved for your whole life. Your head needs to be in the game, but maybe the actions, the right actions will get your head in the game. Fake it until you make it so to speak.
I guess what I think is that although it isn't easy, it isn't hard either.
I also acknowledge that what works for one person is not always the right approach for the next. But what I don't get is if your approach hasn't worked, or maybe it has worked, but not long term, then why do we insist on repeating it? Why are we so reluctant to at least try what has and is working for someone else? Especially if that someone else isn't trying to sell you something...
I swear I am NOT trying to be judgemental here, or impose my way of doing things on anyone, or in any way sound 'preachy', (although I am pretty sure this is how I am coming across.) I guess you all, (o.k. both of you...lol,) are the unfortunate recipients of my frustration with my Mom and friend. I just know that I feel so great that I am making progress every week, and every pound that comes off is a little bit of freedom for me, I want that so much for the people I care about.
I'm not saying that I am frustrated because they aren't doing it "my" way, but that they aren't willing to even consider that what I am doing could work for them, or for that matter that maybe something different from what they are doing could possibly work. I know there are so many opinions out there, too many, as many opinions as stars in the dark night sky. I know this can be overwhelming. But what is it about human nature and our minds, that believes that doing the same thing as we have always done will this time bring us different results?
This is some peoples definition of insanity....