Renewing my Focus

Yesterday I wrote a post ‘Admitting it to Myself

The premise of the post was sparked after a conversation with a colleague, and this is what I said to her:

‘I am not happy with my current weight. But I am scared to admit that, because what if I do and slide down again…down into the depths of hell…the black hole that I have so desperately tried to get out of!’ I say with a twinge of horror at realising what I am admitting to myself and the terror if having to do so.

She then asked me about the weight that I wanted to be at and then goes:

‘Lets talk about some ways in which you can help get yourself to that place’ she says as she walks over to the whiteboard to help me outline my approach.

So what did we talk about, the areas where I feel that I need to address? How can I renew my focus?

  1. Need more sleep–I need to shut off my computer and go to bed. Right now I find myself going to sleep between 11:30pm-1am. This TOTALLY impacts my ability to get up in the morning for working out and my productivity throughout the day. It also increases my ‘need’ for sugar, because I am needing a quick fix to overcome the tired.
  2. Stopping eating when I am hungry–This really goes back to some abandonment issues I have from growing up. Food is comfort for me. If it’s there..I feel that I need to eat it all. I feel emotionally much better–oddly enough–when I got to bed full. I have to work through this a bit more. Really focusing on the emotional aspects of food, journalling my eating, and re-focusing my thought patterns to non-food issues is what we discussed.
  3. If in social situations, I always gravitate towards food and away from social situations–we didn’t flush this out so much. However, it comes back to finding other ways to engage myself in a new social situation that doesn’t revolve around food.
  4. I think about negative thoughts/food/my body/how much I weight–40 to 50% of the day–This made me break down and cry. I mean look at all of the fantastic things going on in my life. This is what I think about the majority of the day? She looked at me and goes ‘when something comes into your mind, you need to find a way of putting it somewhere. Perhaps allocate a time to deal with it. For some people it’s putting into the ‘bottom drawer’ at work, placing it into a box that they open from 5-5:30pm.’ I sat there and decided that I am going to put it into a mixer and deal with it at night. Pull the ingredients out that don’t work for the thing I am going to bake…and then go to sleep with the knowledge that I can change certain things for a positive outcome.
  5. Exercise— I am exercising pretty consistently. Right now it’s more about keeping up physical activity. But she wants me to focus on the thought patterns and eating first. Then exercise later.

After going through this, I thought to myself: Michelle, you can do this. You don’t have to be perfect and right now you’re not totally ok with where you are. However, you are stronger than to let this little set-back hold you back from where you want to end up going.

I felt renewed. I felt totally in control. I felt focused on something that is obtainable, functional, and do-able. FINALLY, I feel free from having to pretend that it’s ok/perfect…when in my heart it’s not.

I hope that these little blurbs about my life find a place in your heart to be honest with what is going on in your life. It may or may not be about weight/body image issues–and I hope that you can be practical in solving/examining these things in your life.

I have been inspired so much by Angela @ OhSheGlows that I will be hosting a Renew Giveway….please keep your eyes peeled!

What is one thing that has helped you renew your focus?

~M

3 thoughts on “Renewing my Focus

  1. Reluctant Blogger says:

    Good for you, Michelle. I’m so sorry you had this kind of relapse. But perhaps it’s not really that, just another step on the way.

    I think the sleep thing is spot on – you need a routine I guess, boring though that is. I am like you and would stay up but I am fairly strict and go to bed at 11.45pm.
    For me, though exercise is the key to eating and thinking, if I run, I feel better instantly (and for a while afterwards) and it stops me getting glum or succumbing to comfort eating. I couldn’t do it the other way round I don’t think. But you are not me.

    That percentage figure is very scary. I remember when I wrote an entry in my diary about how I felt I was over T, and I asked myself how often she was in my head – and despite thinking I was over her, the result was scarily similar to the percentage you quote. It is so hard to stop thoughts.

    I wish I could help.

  2. Katherine says:

    Thanks for this – it’s so easy to get caught up in negative and harmful cyclical thinking and bad habits. Sometimes it takes some uncomfortable introspection to really make you think “what do I need to change in order to change myself?” It’s so hard to change habits, even if they’re really hurting you. I know I need to take more steps back and say “is this really going to get me where I need to be?”

    It’s hard to change your thinking, but it’s also hard to even address negative thinking…all too often, I don’t even realize I’m doing it, like I’m denial that what I’m doing is harmful. I need to start keeping tally of all the times I think negatively about myself OR catch myself in denial (i.e., eating a 2nd cookie when I don’t need it, skipping exercise because I “don’t feel like it”), because I’m not one of those people who can get away with eating a 2nd cookie or not exercising.

    That novel of a comment might make more sense to me than it does anyone else 😉

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