See Video Versionhttps://youtu.be/nhUCXgzLRjs
Make Weight Loss Painless Part 5: MANAGE WORD CHOICES
I’ve been good!!!! Ever say that when you’ve made good choices on your nutrition or exercise plan?
Was it helpful?
Not likely. We don’t need more shaming or blaming or making yourself OR food choices wrong. It’s not being good or bad, being “allowed” a food, or any words that bring to mind deprivation, restriction, or blame. It doesn’t help us to label ourselves or foods in that way.
Would you use such words if talking about a food allergy? Of course not – doesn’t make it a bad food, we just know how our body will react – and no, thank you.
We don’t say a food is “bad” if we don’t like it or have no desire for it in the moment. It’s our preference. If it’s high in whatever you’re trying to avoid, it’s not bad. It’s just not for you.
What we eat is entirely our choice. Yet when we’re talking about reaching a goal, we seem to decide they’re either good or bad when the truth is that it simply may not help us reach our goal.
We don’t talk about a highway being bad because it’s not the one that will take us where we want to go. I live near Interstate 20 in Texas, and it runs east and west. Is it a bad highway because it won’t get me to North Dakota? No, that’s not its role. Just as I-20 won’t work for north, some foods won’t help me reach my goal destination.
Labeling often clouds an issue, and the more we speak of it in that way, the cloudier it gets – along with our moods.
Weight loss is not about punishing ourselves, but so much of our language around weight loss is.
My grandparents raised cattle and turkeys year-round, and they roamed freely most of the time. In “laying” season, we moved the turkeys into a large chunk of acreage nearer to the house. They roamed free in the day and had free access to nesting places as needed. At night, however, we put them in a more protected pen because, well – coyotes and such. It took at least two of us, and we coordinated our movements to gently “herd” them. It was patient work, and my grandfather would say, “Hold what you’ve got” while the flock negotiated ruffled feathers and then settled so we could move forward. In the end, they were all safe, accounted for, and tucked in for the night. It was like a dance – coordinated steps, choices, pauses, and the occasional sprint after an escapee to reach the goal.
Lasting weight loss is a coordinated effort with just as many steps, choices, pauses, and sprints focused on a goal. There are times when you have to “hold what you’ve got” until feathers are smoothed again and we get settled back into the forward movement toward the goal.
It’s not punishment, shame, good, bad or ugly. It’s a process.
Make it painless: Speak more kindly to yourself about weight loss. Hold what you’ve got rather than beating up on yourself.