I wrote this as a hopefully helpful post on another board, but it turned out to be really helpful writing it for ME, so it's a keeper!
"As you know, I've had a pretty bad year as regards my weight loss/fitness JOURNEE. I don't know whether it was a delayed reaction to all that went on last year, or I was just going through a phase, but gradually over a few months from basically March or so till just recently, the wheels have gradually been falling off to the point that lately all I've pretty much been doing besides work is going out of my way to eat really, really crappy food, not tracking calories, hardly ever going to the gym and basically sitting around the house feeling sorry for myself, watching TV with my butt stapled to my (admittedly lovely and comfy) new Ikea chaise couch. This saw me put on somewhere between 7 and 10kg (we'll see what the "somewhere" is on the 1st ). Now, I have no idea how long that could have gone on. To be honest, I was starting to really scare myself. I was starting to think I was going to go back up over 160kg and way, way beyond it this time, and there would be no going back at all, ever. (I'm such a positive person, aren't I? *rueful grin* )
Anyway, this is the important bit - there are two significant things I've done lately that's helped me start to really get things back on track. Firstly, I've been seeing a psychologist for a few months now, all paid for by Medicare. You can get up to 18 appointments in a year paid for if you have a demonstrable history of depression/anxiety (as I do). I honestly can't recommend it highly enough. Anyway, I was telling her the other day about how I'd been feeling dreadfully out of control and scared I was on the verge of giving it all up and getting so big I'll end up having to be removed from my house with a forklift, and how I needed some kind of visual reminder, when I'm right in the heat of the binge decision, of what I'm really choosing. Yes, on the surface you are just choosing to eat or not eat a food, but in reality you are choosing much more. If you choose to eat crap or too much, too often, basically you are choosing to make the things that you hate about being fat continue to affect you forever. You are choosing to risk your health and continued mobility. And that's just for starters. So the idea I had was to make something like those old school projects. You know when you used to get big pieces of cardboard and stick pictures and letters, etc, all over them? Well, that's what I've done (it was my idea, but the psychologist suggested it very strongly as homework). One piece of card is bright yellow and it has pics of healthy (not skinny) bodies, appetising healthy food, nice, white teeth (this is to help me break my Diet Coke habit...lol), and then it has pics of some of my future career aspirations that I'd like to explore and also a pic of a couple in lurve (yes, eventually I want that again too, once my poor heart has healed!). It also has bright flower stickers all over it. It's very pretty. The other card is black and has a picture of a table full of revolting junk food, a really scary teeth mouth, pics that represent sadness, isolation, etc, and other stuff meaningful to me. Now, when I feel like I want to binge, I have these cards right next to my desk. I am going to look at them and remind myself what I'm REALLY choosing. It should make it a no-brainer.
Wow, this is a novel and a half, and I'm not quite finished. To tie all this in, the other day I went out shopping and had one of those epiphany experiences we do every so often. It's really dumb what caused it, but I'm glad it happened. I was walking near Woolies and a bunch of three very stupid teenage tattooed girls were walking towards me, laughing at the top of their lungs at nothing. One veered away from the other two and headed towards me, butshe wasn't looking where she was going. Anyway, she almost ran into me before she saw me, and I swear to God, she SCREAMED with fright, like she'd just seen the Incredible Hulk or something. Now, in all likelihood she was just screaming because she got a shock, like you would if you nearly ran into a post or something. She may have been screaming because she's just an idiot. But on the day it happened, my confidence was so low and I was so down on myself that I got all paranoid about it and decided she'd done it because I'm so big and fat and frightening and I don't blend in any more like I was beginning to 10kg ago, etc, etc. I almost started to panic on the spot. I wanted to run out of the shops. I went and took a seat in front of Woolies and breathe, breathe, breathed until I got the feeling out of my head. Then a couple of hours later, when I was home again, I thought about what happened and it hit me like a tonne of bricks. A HUGE thing I'm risking by not eating healthily or exercising is my self-confidence and self-esteem. Now I'm not saying it's imposssible to have those when you weigh 160kg but, I've gotta tell you, I find it very hard to believe people who say they are totally happy at that weight are not somehow in denial. There are a lot more fat people around these days, it's true, but if you're really big you still stand out like a sore thumb and for all the wrong reasons. You have to be strong enough to stand up to a mountain of societal and social pressure if you're going to go down that road. And me? I'm not. I admit it. And the other day proves it. Now, I know that before this big stumble occurred, my confidence in myself was really starting to increase. I could go out and walk around shops and I was starting NOT to feel people staring at me and it felt good! And when I'm in control of my food and exercise, I can't explain it but it gives me confidence because I don't feel helpless, hopeless. I feel like I'm in the driver's seat and I have the power to make good choices. Without that extra confidence, I'll never find the courage to go make a new career for myself. I'll never be able to handle dating because you NEED to be confident enough to accept rejection. I'll never make any new friends because I'll always talk myself out of going out."
Oh, I do love a good epiphany! Ciao!