I really love my job!
And I love it even more when I get emails like this one from Roberta*
“Weekend was really good. Went to a movie Sat night and even though my husband was chomping away on his popcorn, I just stuck to my cut up apple and didn’t even have a kernel. I was going to have some, but I changed my mind. I sang myself the Spice Girls song: ‘Tell me what you want, what you really really want…’ and I changed my mind. I made myself a small salad later and I was fine.
Today I was down a pound on the scale, so I’m thrilled!”
Roberta has started her weight loss journey with a mindbodysoul cleanse,
so she’s only eating fruits and veggies this week.
She knows she can have popcorn any time,
but for now she’s choosing not to have it.
Because she knows what she really really wants.
She wants to be thin.
She wants to reset her connection to her body’s wisdom.
She wants to kickstart her weight loss.
The immediate desire for popcorn is no match for this deep desire.
It’s so powerful when we remind ourselves what we want.
What we really really want.
This morning, I talked to Lavinia*, who told me that she wants chili french fries. Every night.
She tries to resist this desire, but it becomes an urge, it starts to feel like a need, and she usually gives in and eats them.
I asked her what she really wants? The fries, she said, thinking I didn’t hear her.
But tell me what you really really want? I sang (I’ll spare you the audio).
I want to be thin.
I want peace.
I remember this conflict when I was struggling with my weight.
Desperately wanting to be thin.
Desperately wanting to feel in control of my eating.
Desperately wanting this battle to be over.
Fighting so hard, and losing almost every time.
Does this sound familiar?
Try this next time:
Stop fighting. You can’t win when you’re fighting yourself.
When you’re in the midst of an urge to eat food that won’t get you the result you really want, don’t try to reason with that urge, or talk yourself out of it. It will just get stronger, until you give in.
Think of a toddler who wants you to get her something while you’re on the phone – the more you try to push them away, the louder and more persistent you get, right? Our urges are like that.
That urge is your inner toddler.
Do this instead:
Take your mind elsewhere.
Ask yourself what you really really want (feel free to serenade yourself Spice girl style!).
Remind yourself what that is.
If you believe that this is possible for you, the fries or popcorn become irrelevant.
It’s like giving your toddler a hug – instant calm – your attention was what she really really wanted.
If you don’t believe you can have what you want, then I highly recommend you get some coaching, because that belief will trip you up every time. More on that next week.
*not their real names of course, I’m a vault when it comes to client details.