The Yin and Yang of It All
Have you seen the new TV show “My 600 lb life” being aired on the FYI network?
I watched it yesterday for the first time and was really moved by both the lifestyle with which the individuals suffer, as well as the courage it takes for their transformation.
We can all look back at our “before & after” photos with equal amazement, remembering what our lives were like then, and at our current experience of being alive
I was especially interested in a critical moment of decision for the “star” of the show. She had her gastric bypass surgery, weighing in at 538 lbs. There was an incredible amount of struggle for her to even get into the truck to go to the hospital for the surgery. Her attempts at getting out of the hospital bed, balancing herself on her walker, and even taking two steps to the waiting wheelchair were exhausting..
A short time later she went off liquids and tried out solids. Being Hispanic, the household was full of food selections specific to that culture … refried beans, tortillas, cheese, hamburger meat … and the family’s weight reflected those high-fat choices.
She sat there and stared at the food selections available in the household. What do I want? What do I feel like? Or will I choose what is important to me?
What she “wanted” was not the criteria by which she was now living her life, but in that moment, the old habit of “what I want” or “what makes me feel good,” was automatically there, in front of her eyes, confronting her. Given what she was committed to, however, her “wants” and “feelings” just didn’t add up any more.
We can all paint ourselves into her picture. Every day we still find ourselves considering “what do I want?” and/or “what do I feel like?” “What do I have a taste for?”
What we have come to realize, however, is that there is an IMPACT to our decisions. There are skid-marks to having what we want. We can have anything we want, but do we also choose the impact of satisfying that want?
This is the pivotal moment in our personal transformation. When we “upgrade’ our decisions, based on what we are committed to, rather than on what we “feel like” or “want.”
Yes, the surgery will take care of our compulsion to eat in terms of the quantity we are able to stuff down. But what about learning to “cheat”?
I learned that if I had gravy or sauce with my meat, it would go down easier. I also learned that dark chocolate ice cream slides down. I got satisfied with high-fat cheeses accompanied by gourmet jellies. I learned that chips with dip and crackers went down where bread would not. I learned how to eat around the band. My focus was on what would “go down”. NOT on what would nourish my body.
I once again fell into the trap of considering my food choices based upon my wants and my feelings. And I got what I wanted.
But I also got what I didn’t want … plateau, weight re-gain, and the repeated trap of low self-esteem that is accompanied by failure.
I got to be RIGHT that I was a failure.
I got to be RIGHT that, once again, “the diet” didn’t work.
I decided to be totally straight with myself, and acknowledge that I was the common denominator in all of the evidence of my repeated failures. In a blinding moment of truth, I was able to see that there really was no one, no circumstance, and no situation to blame for my repeated failure, outside of myself. I saw that there were only my actions to be accountable for, based on my short-term commitment to what I “felt like” or “wanted.”
In that moment, I grew up. I upgraded a very immature relationship to myself from gratification to responsibility.
Did I want those cheese and crackers? Yes. But at the expense of my own health and wellness? NO. Was I willing to sacrifice my dream for a piece of cheese or a swallow? NO.
And that, my friends, was my own pivot point. That is where the ‘yin and yang” of life came to a crossroads. That is where I chose myself, and the future I was committed to, over the emotion, justification or desire of the moment. That was my inside out thinking.
We all have that power … to claim our future. It requires us to be totally straight with ourselves.
There is nobody in the driver’s seat but you. The surgery won’t do it for you. The protein shakes will not do it for you. There is no pill that will do it for you. You, and you alone, are in charge of your future, and of your dreams.
This is your moment, your future, and your opportunity to upgrade your life and create the life you want to have.
Thank you for being that big.