When you are looking at losing weight, I believe the hardest thing about it is staying motivated. We usually start really well. We have the best of intentions. That upcoming wedding, that little black dress that is still hanging in the closet, those jeans that you love but still gives you a muffin top, way too much jiggling, and the list goes on.
How do we stay motivated?
That is the million dollar question. Motivation is the undefined thing that seems to haunt us all and is different for every one of us. In our house, Doug and I chose, coming up 6 years ago, to make healthy eating and living our priority. We changed our eating habits and now make exercise part of our weekly routines. But, our motivations are totally different, other than to live a healthy life. We both started out wanting to get healthy and to lose weight, but that is where the similarities end. What motivates me doesn’t motivate him and what motivates him doesn’t motivate me.
How, then do we come up with a common ground to work with?
That is the never-ending question. Recently, I heard a really profound question, that for me has answered this question. “ Is the food/ drink I am about to consume going to bring me closer or further from my goal?”
This hit me between the eyes. WOW! This will now be my question that I will ask every time I want to eat something. Because once I can answer that question, it will lead right back to why I want to eat that thing, or not eat that thing.
The reason we eat essentially is for survival. Without food, we will ultimately die. If you don’t water a plant for a long time, it will die. True, but most of us just throw some water at that plant and it does the rest. However, we are not plants. We don’t and can’t survive on water alone. It is essential, but not enough. It is not enough for that plant, but it gets the rest on its own through the sun and it’s soil. Oh if only I were a plant and things could be just that simple.
We, however, are so much more complicated than that. Even in the animal kingdom, they eat for survival and nothing more. Predators only kill to feed themselves and their family. Scavengers only eat until they are done, and then the next level of scavengers get the rest. Grazers, eat all day, but never to the point that they are too full. We are not included in this because we are humans and we were given feelings and emotions.
No other animal attaches food to feelings but us. Therefore we need to get past the excuses and get back to the basics. Take the out emotions as much as we can and get back to – “ Is the food/ drink I am about to consume going to bring me closer or further from my goal?”
If we were to stick this saying on the fridge, pantry, freezer, snack cupboard, we may find that we don’t really need to eat as often or as much as we have been.
Having said all that, we were given taste buds for a reason. We are supposed to enjoy what we eat. We are supposed to come together in celebration and consolation with food. It is how we are made. We just need to remember that in between those celebrations and those meal gatherings, we should not gorge ourselves. We are to be mindful of our bodies and the fuel we are putting into it. We need to go back to remembering why we eat.
So, my advice for you is going to be just what I have done. Put a post-it note on the fridge, pantry door, snack cupboard, to remind me of the commitment that I have made to myself.
Is this food going to bring me closer or further from my goal?
Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. – Hippocrates