It’s the new year (and may joy and contentment abound in it) and time for many to make resolutions…Ahh, those resolutions, particularly those that are about losing weight. Or maybe I should say “Oy, those resolutions…”
My experience of years of making resolutions about food, weight and my body was somewhat disastrous. (See photo I’ve attached. This is me at my fattest. Forgive the lack of clarity in it, I wouldn’t let anyone take my picture and a friend snapped this without me knowing it) The resolutions worked for a week or two, maybe even a month, and then they stopped working. They felt too hard, too unrealistic.
Here's what I've learned: If a resolution or a goal is against something, if you’re trying to whip yourself into shape because you believe that you are hopeless or not trustworthy around food, then it’s likely to fail. Being against something in yourself is being at war with yourself. It’s saying to yourself: The only way to win is to vanquish my enemy tendencies, to force myself into a particular shape and/or way of being. Being against yourself precipitates the the part of you that rebels when you try to force yourself into anything. When you tell yourself you’re hopeless or fat or bad. No one wants to hear those kinds of things. They are not helpful or supportive of true change.
But being FOR yourself is a whole different story. Being FOR your vitality, your well-being, your energy allows you to move towards something rather than away from it.
The thing I didn’t write in the Carrie Fisher-Debbie Reynolds post from a few days ago, was that Carrie Fisher said, after George Lucas asked her to lose 35 pounds for the Star Wars movie was “They didn’t hire me. They hired me minus 35 pounds.” And of the diet that Carrie Fisher followed to lose that weight, her mother said, “She worked her body off for one year to not have a body.”
In the end, it always gets down to what you want most and how that is reflected in what you eat. If what you want is to be thin at any cost now—or in the year 2017—then chances are you will do what almost all of us have done many times before. Work against yourself. Try to deprive and force yourself into “not having a body.” You will have what you’ve already had (a thinner body from dieting) that will probably last ten minutes because fighting yourself doesn’t work. It never has. It never will.
Ask yourself what you want. How you want to live. How you want to spend TODAY. Not next week or three days from now. And extend that to what you eat because what you put in your body affects how you live. That’s the biggest reason to pay attention to what you eat: because you want to be here on earth as much as you can while you are here and food is part of that.
So: What foods depress you? What foods zap your energy? What foods give you a stomachache? You can’t live fully when your energy is being zapped daily. At the end of your life, you can’t take your thinner thighs with you but you can feel the satisfaction of not having missed your life because your energy was lethargic and you couldn’t really be there for your child’s laugh. Move towards what you sense is possible: allow your one-of-a-kind fabulousness to manifest, here in the only vehicle you’ve been given: your body.