Weighty Matters

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Pheeling All Pharrell

I’m experiencing an abundance of happiness.  I seriously could dance around the room like a Pharrell Williams video, singing his mega-hit song.

Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you know what happiness is to you
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do

I plan to revel in this lightness of being all weekend long and into next week.  Joy needs to be appreciated, shared, and, whenever possible, expanded.  If you’re into being a curmudgeon or grump, you might want to avoid my company for a few days.

Truthfully, I don’t have one solid reason for feeling this way today.  It’s more like a combination of things, or perhaps a culmination.  Remember a few posts back when I talked about the beautiful meme?  In case you didn’t read it, to summarize, the meme suggested that we start each morning with the thought that it’s going to be a beautiful day.  At some point, we should stop and say, “It is a beautiful day.”  Then, before going to sleep at night, we need to look back and claim, “It was a beautiful day.”  If we do that, and store up those beautiful days, down the road we’ll be able to look back and know that we had a beautiful life.

I’ve followed that meme’s suggestions every day.  This practice has imbued me with at least some moments of peace, serenity and gratitude, whenever I pause for the beautiful acknowledgements.  I’ve also taken time to appreciate the good things that occurred — big or small.  The knee treatment plan, good phone calls with family and friends, completing some important projects at work, a better-than-expected report at the dentist,  taking a long bike ride, preparing and enjoying delicious food, even the successful dyeing of a shirt and bra (fuschia!) for the upcoming 5 K Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk.  Another happy moment – exceeding my personal fundraising goal for the event!  I made plans today to spend time with friends that I haven’t seen in at least 15 years when I travel up to Jersey later this month.  Fun!

It’s like one good thing just led to another and then another until I had a cascade of happy pouring into my heart and out through my smile.

Yeah, that sounds sappy, but I don’t care.  I’m going to ride the wave and keep enjoying the feeling.

Honestly, I run into a fair number of people who thrive on complaining and appear to latch onto misery and upset.  I choose to not focus on the negatives.  I’d rather attract positive stuff.

So, picture me dancing around and acting like I’m a room without a roof.

Because I’m happy.

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Messed Up Mindset

For some reason, this blog is not fully cooperating with me. I’ve been unable to do posts or comments. Hopefully I have it straightened out.

In a comment to my “Funk” post from earlier in the week, Pink Pelican shared her experience which is similar to what I’m going through right now. Pink, thank you. Far from discouraging me, it gives me hope and validates what I’ve been thinking. I need to focus on my head, on my messed-up mindset right now.

To recap, what’s happened is that my stalled physical weight loss progress is drastically effecting my emotions and my mental process about my journey. This is a dangerous state for me. I’m an emotional eater. I have an eating disorder. When my emotions and head go off track, my compulsive eating behavior likely follows.

Right now, even though I am 180ish pounds lighter than I was a few years ago and living a life where I eat healthier foods and am physically active, I’ve lost the positive energy that I rode for so long on this amazing, joyful journey. I’m mired in the diseased mindset. I am nearly as down on myself about my body and lack of progress, the self-sabotage and everything else as I was when I was in the worst state of my eating disorder disease at 386 pounds. This is a dangerous, defeating, unhealthy place to be. I need to stop before I eat myself back into obesity.

Usually, I plan on how I’m going to control my eating. Oddly enough, that’s often easier than fixing the mindset. However, it’s the head that needs my focus right now. This doesn’t mean I’m flagrantly going out and eating whatever I want. Instead, it’s a call to myself for greater balance. In OA, we called recovery a three legged stool — physical, mental and emotional. If too much emphasis is put on one leg to the detriment of others, the seat isn’t balanced. It will tip and drop my ass on the ground.

The first two years of my post-surgery journey were alll physical progress. The speed of weight loss, the physical improvements in my overall body as well as my fitness level produced an incredible joy and euphoria. I worked on issues about my eating disorder here on the blog and have made a lot of progress in the area of understanding why and how I’ve used food as a drug and crutch in the past. That’s all good and I can build on it.

However, there are still aspects to the disease thinking that I haven’t resolved and now my stool is badly tilted. What’s coming up for me the most right now is the old B.I.N.G.E. thinking of Believing I’m Not Good Enough. More to the point, it’s believing that the amazing progress and revolutionary recovery I’ve already achieved isn’t good enough. I still in my heart of hearts find myself lacking. I get down on myself and concentrate too much on how far I still have to go.

No, I’m not satisfied. I don’t want to stop losing weight. However, somehow I also have to be okay with myself wherever I am in my progress. If I never did lose another pound, I would still be incredibly more healthy than I’ve ever been.

So, how do I accomplish this? I’m starting with cancelling stinking thinking. When I get down on myself for no progress or for messing up or even for eating a frigging half slice of bread, I need to be aware of the thought and then banish it or counteract it. It is unacceptable for me to be so self-critical and not accept myself.

At the same time, I need to get back to recognizing and appreciating all of the good that I have done and continue to do for myself. It isn’t enough for me to just go out and ride my bike six miles. I need to celebrate that activity in the moment and really make it rich. I will acknowledge and take joy in all that I am now able to do. Whether it’s riding the bike, walking with greater ease and less pain, the balance, strength and flexibility of Tai Chi, or the easy glide of snorkeling I will take note, immerse in the experience and feel the joy.

Negativity out – joy in. Easy formula. It’s almost like happiness is another muscle. I need to work on my reps and build the strength of my own heart and head to engender the recovery.

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