Weighty Matters

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Changing Lifestyle

on January 10, 2015

The process of changing a lifestyle is more important than reaching a goal or measuring a performance. – Theodore Isaac Rubin

This quote was part of my daily reading the other day.  It really summed up what I continue to struggle with  in my recovery.  I know that my recovery is all about changing my lifestyle from unhealthy and sedentary to healthy with physical fitness and activity.  Yet, all too often I still measure my success in whether I strictly adhered to a rigorous protocol of food choices and what the number says on the scale.

These issues battle for control in my head all of the time.  The one that is winning on any given day all too often determines how I feel about myself.  When I focus too much on my weight by number or whether, goodness sake, I actually treated myself to some pasta at dinner or a single cupcake for dessert, I send myself right back into the diseased thinking of “You failed.  You ruined today.”

When I focus on how much I’ve achieved with my overall lifestyle change; when I embrace that I am SO much healthier in the way that I eat, the food choices I make, the physical activities that I enjoy doing, the adventures that I explore; I feel so much better emotionally, mentally and spiritually too.

I need to cultivate positive reinforcement for my lifestyle change.  I need to notice when I have a good, balanced day.  I also need to be mindful about how I talk to myself or quiz myself.   Did I choose the things I ate with care, or did I eat mindlessly, driven by compulsion?  Was I in balance in the actual food choices – healthy, fresh, natural most of the time and not so much fatty, low-quality, over-processed foods?  If I ate anything compulsively, or over-indulged at some point in less healthier food choices, I shouldn’t go on to castigate myself.  Nothing is served by mentally berating myself.  I can look at the day objectively and treat myself with love, understanding, and a re-commitment.

Was I physically active?  I don’t need to march a 5K every day, but some part of my day needs to include some sort of activity — walks with the dogs, Tai Chi, a workout DVD, a bike ride.

Consistent commitment to the healthier choices strengthens the foundation of my improved lifestyle far more than obsessing on the scale numbers or the size on the tags of my clothes.  Do I feel good, strong, and energetic?  Am I peaceful and happy in my heart?  Those are the things that matter.

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