With the new year upon us I am trying very hard to avoid the same old cycle of resolution making with eventual breaking. I feel like setting myself up for the same failure year after year leaves me fatter and sadder every December and what good is that? It isn’t. Why is it that I ant set reasonable goals, work hard at them, and achieve them? In fact…why do I end up going in the opposite direction and somehow gaining more weight and becoming even further behind in my projects?

Well this year I decided to do differently. I decided to start early. I noticed I was feeling better this fall, so I decided to start looking at myself before the holiday season. My biggest issue is my weight, but the bigger more global issue is my health. In years past, despite my body size, my lab values during my physicals weren’t actually too bad. But last year my cholesterol and fasting blood sugar were both borderline high. With my parent’s history of health issues it has been weighing on me that I need to do something.

But, every year I tell myself this. And I’ve had success with weight loss and exercise and healthy eating, but then I always fall off the wagon. Like everyone else. I know this is not a new story and so many people relate to this issue, but I really just wanted to get down to the root of the issue. My husband actually recommended a podcast featuring Judson Brewer, and he discusses his book

So what did I learn? That even though Sabotage is my favorite Beastie Boys song, I didn’t have to live my life that way. I am the queen of self sabotage. Once one thing goes wrong I can easily send myself down a spiral of self destructive behaviors to bring myself even further down until I am so debilitated by my depression and anxiety I can’t get out for days or weeks at a time.

My favorite activities of self destruction used to be binge drinking with friends and over eating. I was making a lot of bad decisions that were mentally and physically unhealthy for a very long time. I realized that I have to stop the spiral before it begins. But…how do you stop it all?

It’s not easy, but I have to take deep breaths in the moment and talk to myself, and yes, some times it does feel funny, but it works for me. My inner dialogue goes as follows:

Did a bad thing happen? Yes. Does it feel bad and make me anxious and do I need to cry? Probably. What is the worst thing that is going to happen because of this bad thing? (repeat this question 4-5 times until I come up with the most realistic answer). Just because the bad happened doesn’t make me a bad person and doesn’t mean I am awful and doesn’t mean my life is going to end. Deep. Breaths.

This took many months to come up and it’s what has helped me in those moments that I can’t calm my brain. But I haven’t had any urges to binge on anything in a long time. I should say out of sadness…I still binge on cheese and sugar once in a while because deliciousness. I’m a forever work in progress, but I will get there some day. I’m not an optimist but I am feeling a shift in my self imagine and self worth.

Oh and for those goals? I want to improve my lab values, fit into my clothes better, I want to write more of my story, update my blog more often, try tai chi. I threw my scale under the bed when it ran out of batteries and I don’t miss it. I started eating healthy the day after Thanksgiving and am feeling great. And that’s all I can do! Cheers!

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