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Archive for July, 2008

For those of us who are very large, it’s often more important to find clothes that cover us rather than look good. For a long time I bought almost anything that fit even reasonably well, because there were simply so few clothes available to me in my size.

Now, I’m a bit smaller, and my bust is 2-3 sizes smaller than my hips. For tops, I fall into the plus size category, and for bottoms, I’m comfortably into the supersize or high plus sizes. That means I can often find comfortable pants, and can always find tops to fit.

Yikes! If tops are now easy to find, I’ll go broke if I stick to my former policy of “if it fits, buy it.” Example: I wanted a hippie-style tunic top. When I found a tolerable pink one, I bought it. Later I found a couple of tops that fit better that the tunic. The last few days, I’ve been photographed in all three. The pink top simply doesn’t fit right. I even had to roll up the sleeves, and the end result is, I think I should get rid of the pink one.

Take a look at the pictures. What do you think? Keep or toss?

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FInally someone noticed my weight loss and said something about it.

My husband’s aunt lost a lot of weight a few years ago, then promptly gained it all back. Now she’s getting weaker, and few people expect her to live much longer.

Yesterday we visited her, and she came over to me to specifically mention she had noticed my weight loss. She went further to say that the last time we’d visited she noticed as well. We talked a little more about the fact that I’m doing it slowly so that I am making permanent changes, and will never have to do this again.

Knowing that someone else has noticed and was kind enough to say something has certainly helped me feel more content. It’s not my main motivation, but it certainly helps.

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One thing that surprises me is that I can finally see change has occurred. I really do think differently.  I had what must be a limiting belief in that I thought you had to set a detailed plan, then work the plan perfectly. Holding myself to that standard is painful and impossible to achieve.

The idea of overeating = deprivation is new and is growing on me. I haven’t yet made a direct link between saying, “If I eat this, I will feel bad and delay my goals” and actually not eating that thing. But I think it’s possible and will eventually happen.

Turning that into positives might work better, and I’m trying to remember to do that. That’s what we are doing when we ask the question, “How do I want to feel in x hours?” and make a decision on what and how much to eat.

 

  • The nice thing about not succeeding is that you know many things to do differently.
  • Review the questions frequently to reassure yourself that you are on the right path. Adjust your plan as needed. Set many sub-goals to help you along the path to permanent improvement.
  • Affirm frequently the fact that you deserve the improvements you’re making.
  • Overweight is deprivation. When you are overweight, you deprive yourself of
    • Feeling physically good
    • Healthy emotional thinking
    • Doing the things you can’t enjoy when you’re too overweight
    • Enjoying life
  • Extra energy packs itself onto your body in the form of fat. Think about it squeezing in-between your organs, taxing each of them more whenever you eat too much.
  • Visualize your body using the stored energy, constantly improving your physical state and ability to live happier. That’s a wonderful treat.
  • Every movement you make, every food choice you make, speaks to your body. Speak to it with love and caring, giving yourself the comfort you need.
  • It is easy and natural to lose weight, actually easier than gaining too much weight.
  • If you run away into food, find new place to run to, and gradually learn to balance running away with facing issues.
  • Making these changes require practice. Constantly try on the new beliefs until they settle in and you don’t think about them any more.
  • You have graduated when gratitude for the struggle can be felt. When you are grateful for the path you’ve taken, you’ve graduated through that area.

Naturally slender is a behavior, not a number.

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The shortcut to belief change is to visualize yourself in the future state, then start behaving that way.

Today I can imagine that I can eat less and later and still be satisfied and happy. Lunch has been pushed out a little later, and I was hungrier a little earlier, so this is a good chance to experience a longer period of hunger before eating. Not all hunger has to be fed immediately – I will enjoy my food more if I’m a little hungrier. I will enjoy my financial state more if I’m hungry enough to finish my meal, rather than throw some away.  I’ll enjoy my snack more if I eat the right amount of lunch that enables me to be properly hungry at snack time.

 

  • If you don’t enjoy where you are on your journey, you won’t have the stamina to continue.
  • It’s important to accept where you currently are, even if you are actively changing it.
  • Creating a process goal instead of a weight goal is better.
  • It’s fun to analyze limiting beliefs when you know you are changing them.
  • For those who have a large amount of weight to lose, enjoying the process is even more critical, because you are going to be constantly discovering new things.
  • This process is a series of loops, in which each loop contains discovery, experimentation, new process and stabilization. That’s how you go from compulsive overeating to normal eating.
  • This is a highly winnable contest. An eating disorder is not like alcoholism is perceived, it can be healed permanently. For most of us, an ED is a set of strongly-developed habits with an emotional base. Building a new emotional base and new habits is not impossible, but it is non-trivial and requires that you pay attention to many different things.
  • Remember life is continuous change, incremental, evolutionary, and only rarely revolutionary. Change you create is more permanent when you do it incrementally.
  • Healing is separate from building habits.
  • The shortcut to belief change is imagining yourself in your future state. Build a strong emotional tie to the new state, and it will be easier to go there. It’s basically building a virtual role model.
  • Describe this person’s behaviors in detail, including a sense of humor and resilience to meet with challenges. Then step into that role in your head, and live the future state again and again.

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The belief I’d currently like to eliminate is the “need” to eat foods that are relatively high in calories.

It’s a belief that says I have to eat certain foods or I can’t be satisfied.

Which foods do satisfy? Warm foods, fats and oils, protein. Which examples can I cite that show this is not true? Canned fruit satisfies me. Vegetable soup satisfies me. Cake satisfies me. Bread satisfies me. Having something to do that’s more fun than eating satisfies me.

This convinces me I am ignoring data that does not support the limiting belief. It’s convincing enough that I almost believe I can be satisfied even if I never eat those foods again. I certainly do believe that I can do it regularly and be satisfied. I will try this at lunch today. I want to pre-correct for a high calorie snack at the movies later today.

 

My notes:

  • We train ourselves to ignore data that conflicts with our beliefs
  • The belief that you cannot change is false and subjective.
  • The best way to remove a limiting belief is to replace it with an empowering belief. Just as subjective, but more useful.
  • One thing I know now is that the old beliefs I used to have, that fat is safe and food is the best comfort, are not true anymore. I have let those ideas go.
  • Questioning a belief sows the seeds of doubt that it might be true. Then your mind opens to new possibilities.
  • You can choose new beliefs that meet your needs.

Changing beliefs don’t happen instantaneously. You notice that your old belief might be false, and then you start practicing as if the new belief were true. All the time, you keep looking for data that shows that your new belief is right.

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One limiting belief I had is the idea that I will lose weight fast. After losing 60 pounds already, it’s not going to come off very fast without radical effort.

A better belief is that I build new habits every day, continually working toward the long term goal.

Increasing the DIFF (Duration, Intensity, Frequency and Fun) of my good eating habits is the way to achieve a long term change.

Very likely the most common reason that I am not losing fast enough are the peak times when I eat more than my body needs. Therefore, increasing the DIFF of good habits is going to increase my loss.

I think I still have a limiting belief that I can’t eat less than I currently do.

Hmm. I think I can meet my emotional needs if I eat around 1500-1800 calories a day. That ought to also create weight loss, since I’m still (barely) over 300 lbs.

My notes:

  • Building the habit, taking the action, then letting go of the outcome is the best way to build the permanent habits.
  • Your body might hold onto weight because of your limiting beliefs. (I don’t really believe this.)
  • A belief that you are helpless to change makes it hard to change.
  • It takes time to stop thinking that it’s hard.
  • To help remove my limiting belief that I can’t lose fast or consistently, I can focus on the good habits and the letting go of the outcome.
  • Do I believe I can consciously and deliberately change? Not really.
    • Think about the elephant on the chain. All it takes is a good hard tug on the chain to change the belief.
    • When have I deliberately changed in the past?
      • School
      • Managing money
  • Learned helpfulness is the antidote to learned heplessness
  • The good habits are
    • Veggies and fruit
    • Self-correcting my portion and calories intuitively
    • Walking
  • The letting go can be achieved by
    • Frequently practicing letting go on non-eating topics as well as eating
    • Increasing the time between weigh-ins

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This was a pleasant surprise. DH and I went to this movie this evening, just to enjoy ourselves, and I discover that the plot included a very supportive perspective on large people.

 (SPOILER alert)

First Maxwell Smart had a weight issue himself that he conquered in a highly normal way, then he used his job as a platform to notice and connect with some people of size. Very positive, very empowering.

And the movie was laugh out loud fun too. The only thing keeping me from buying it when it arrives on DVD is a single barf scene which was too gross for my delicate sensibilities.

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