Please don’t envy me. People do sometimes. I can see it in their eyes. But envy is a distancing sort of thing that denies the envied her humanity and the envier her own possibilities. Instead, consider stepping into my shoes for a moment.
Yes, I did lose 100 pounds 20 years ago. Yes, I’ve kept it off all that time.
But to this day I don’t know why when the doctor told me I needed blood pressure medicine, that then and there I committed to a new level of self-care regarding weight and food. The only thing that explains it is grace, that nameless, faceless something that comes over a person and a life and says, “You are healing. You are safe. You are well, no matter what.”
While I don’t know for sure why I received this beautiful miracle, I do know what actions I took.
I found role models and teachers and did what they did, or what they otherwise taught me that I knew was smart and wholesome.
It was not easy. It still isn’t easy. Folks who choose the path of extreme healing may not be popular in circles where people like to laugh off personal responsibility and tell you it’s okay just this once to have that certain special food you know will bring you down. Life goes on the same as it always did. The world doesn’t shift to suit our new state when our food is under control.
But we can achieve remarkable health if we work for it.
There are five strategies that got me where I am and keep me here:
- Food plan. I avoid at all costs foods that cause bingeing. I also weigh and measure all my meals.
- Support system. I surround myself with kind people and talk to them all the time.
- Body movement. Gentle exercise very day keeps my metabolism up and decreases stress, anxiety and depression that can spark unhealthy eating.
- Self-nurture. Radical self-care cures upset emotions like no food ever can.
- Belief system. Daily time for prayer and meditation to a power greater than myself fills my soul. When my soul is full, I don’t even want to overeat.
So, please don’t envy me. Instead, consider doing some of what I do. Dare to experiment relentlessly, one day at a time, to find what works for you. We can never, ever give up on ourselves.
What say you? Isn’t there one little teeny tiny thing you can do today to take really, really, extremely, very, very good care of you?
Find more about what I did and do in my book The Hungry Ghost: How I Ditched 100 Pounds and Came Fully Alive. Find more inspirational suggestions in other blogs at gayedelman.com. You can also sign up to receive the blog as an email newsletter.