Each week on my 12 week body transformation challenge program, its coordinator (and our fearless leader) Michelle Bridges, records a message and hosts a live webcast thingy which focuses on mindset issues and during which Michelle answers questions fired (electronically, through the ether) at her. Typically I was a bit behind, so finally watched last week’s mindset lesson on the weekend.
During the session Michelle spoke about the attitude of many participants. She said she’d noticed that participants on the online program forums and social media had been talking about their expectations: I’ve been really good this week so I’d better have a good loss! Michelle commented on that sense of entitlement and wondered what was going to happen IF they didn’t have a good loss. Would they (like me) throw themselves onto the floor in a tantrum and binge eat chocolate and corn chips over a two day period? Or, would they KNOW they had been eating well (clean) and exercising and take solace in that fact and KNOW that the rest will come. “Trust in me, and the program,” Michelle says.
As well as speaking of our ridiculously high expectations she reminded us of what we used to eat which led to us being overweight and/or unfit. (I have indeed confessed to my past binge eating habits.) Michelle bluntly told us that THAT time was over. She reminded us we are adults (not impetuous teenagers or uncontrollable toddlers) and have to take responsibility for our own actions.
For some reason, though I’d heard her say similar things last round, this resonated with me.
You’d only have to read a few of my posts to know that I’m all about the entitlement: I deserve a treat. I deserve to skip exercise. Poor me. My life isn’t what I want it to be and so I need SOMETHING to make it better.
Obviously the irony isn’t lost on me: the thing I hate most about my life IS the fact that I’m overweight; a fact which I blame for MANY other disappointments.
It’s not rocket-science. It’s just (been) a never-ending loop. A vicious circle. The more ‘blah’ (technical term) I’ve felt, the more food I’ve shovelled in to make me feel better. Which – as we know alleviated my mood only briefly, until the guilt set in and the clothes tightened and I reminded myself I was a big fat pig. And naturally I coped with the increasing depression and guilt by eating more and more often… so the times between the binges diminished and – like a teenager – I lived my life from one binge to the next. I ‘lived in the now’. But not in a good way.
I recognise these behaviours in myself, but have been powerless to do anything about it. And I realise I’ve been waiting; for the thunderbolt that will strike some sense into me. Or make me ‘better’. But deep down (I must confess) I know Michelle is right.
I have to take responsibility for my behaviour. When I say I’m not in control of my eating it’s a cop-out. I am in control. I’m the one making the decision to act in an ‘out of control’ way. I mean, I’m a 43 year old adult for fuck’s sake. I can’t continue living a life of instant gratification, with little consideration for the consequences. In her lesson Michelle very bluntly said that, ‘We don’t binge eat or eat unhealthily any more. That’s not how we roll.’
I’m not sure why the message finally hit home. I’m not saying the lightbulb has gone on and I am ‘all better’, but it’s given me food for thought… the concept that I need to take some responsibility for my actions and my life… and stop bloody whingeing about it!