Weighty Matters

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Acknowledging Success

on August 30, 2012

It strikes me that some of the things that I count as big successes in this journey might seem smaller, almost no-brainers to others.   I accept that even the closest friends or family members might not understand why some things are a big deal to me.  It’s okay.  I don’t expect someone who doesn’t have an eating dysfunction or some other disorder to understand.  It’s enough that they’re happy that I’m happy and that I’m making positive changes and being successful in the overall endeavor.

Whatever the case, it’s important for me, or anyone that’s fighting a good fight against a major life issue, to recognize and acknowledge success.  Sometimes it’s a little battle won; other struggles are big freaking obstacles that require a great deal of effort to break through.  Large or small, the successes still should be acknowledged.  I believe doing so positive rewards us and reinforces the effort.  It helps me each time I modify an old behavior or make a healthier choice instead of sliding back into an old way.  Marking the success further contributes to the behavior change.  It’s like adding mortar to bricks when building a wall.  I’m solidifying my defenses against my disease.

I’m not going to run out and buy myself an expensive gift every time I resist temptation and don’t overeat.  There are lots of different ways to reinforce my healthier, more appropriate choices and behaviors.  Sometimes it’s enough to smile and celebrate the moment.  You might be surprised how good it feels to do those simple things.  Take it from someone who’s really good at beating up on herself, a mental pat on the back and “Atta girl!” does wonders.

You might also be surprised to know that coming to this blog and openly writing about the successes, the NSVs, the improvements both major and minor, carries a lot of weight.   I’ve long known that bringing the painful secrets out into the open helps reduce their power.  There’s a saying I learned in OA that we’re only as sick as our secrets.  I’m happy to say that sharing the bright spots contributes to a healthier, happier life.

So, my thought for today is that we should make the time to celebrate successes big and small.   Acknowledging positive progress keeps us moving with more energy in our bright futures.

2 responses to “Acknowledging Success

  1. Mary says:

    I accept that even the closest friends or family members might not understand why some things are a big deal to me

    I think that personal successes have a lot of value. 10% or ____ pounds lost is exciting, but after the initial pleasure, it can be just another number. Success in an area you’ve been struggling with means something on an emotional level.

    I’m putting it badly, because I do realize sometimes the numbers are powerful. I recently read the post of a woman who had lost 40 pounds. She was over the moon happy, because for her that was “virgin fat” territory. She had never been able to lose that much before. That kind of happy enthusiasm is infectious. I think that’s why I like coming here, because your enthusiasm is infectious, too, Mary.

    You’ve had so many different kinds of successes, since you began this process. I’m always happy to hear you’ve lost more weight, but it’s the daily life changes that delight me. The daily life changes are the success.


  2. Skye says:

    Very wise. I like to take the wonderful stuff you share about your progress and how you make and mark that progress and try it out in my life, or at least think about doing so. (I forget a lot. i blame all the meds.) You inspire me greatly. Excellent idea on even small celebrations for successes having weight, so to speak. Thank you.

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