I struggled with my weight throughout my childhood. I grew up with a twin sister, an older sister, and a single mom who raised us. We didn’t have a lot of money and ended up eating a lot of ramen noodles, mac n cheese, hot dogs, things off dollar menus at fast food places, and other unhealthy food. My mom would go on rants about our “sexist society” and how women were expected to look young, be thin, and do everything or they were left out of opportunities that men would get. She was constantly on fad diets and talking about her body and ours. I quickly learned the key to happiness was being thin.
As an unhappy, overweight, child and teen, I remember trying to figure out what it would mean to be happy and how I could achieve it. Could it be true that happiness was a number on a scale, a size in clothing, a concrete thing I could count on?! I began working on ways to lower my weight. Weight loss was the key! I tried multiple methods to get my weight down such as starving all day. That, however, would only lead to overeating at night and had an overall negative impact on the scale. Eventually, my weight loss methods and quest for happiness spiraled into a full blown eating disorder. I hit the numbers which I defined as happiness but the feeling never came with it or stayed with it for long. Nothing was ever good enough. I was never good enough. My weight loss was never good enough.
As I began healing from my eating disorder, I realized I had to change my definition of “happy” and stop measuring the quality of my day based on a number on the scale or the size of my clothes. I don’t want you to think changing the definition of this one word solved all my problems. It didn’t. I just realized I wasn’t happy doing what I was doing and the new definition gave me something to strive for and a way to leave the state I was in at the time. There were days I hated myself and convinced myself my old definition of “happy” was really the way to go and the problem was that I hadn’t picked the right numbers, but every day I made a conscious choice to continue moving forward toward my new definition and trying something new, even when it was uncomfortable.
Quick Fixes vs Sustainable Results:
Today I googled “quick weight loss methods” and over 2,500,000 results populated, most with ridiculous and ironic titles. We’ve become a culture of quick fixes rather than sustainable solutions. Our culture has become too focused on weight rather than the reasons which bring people to becoming unhealthy weights to begin with. People lose the same 5, 10, 60 lbs multiple times. Something is wrong and something needs to change. Think about how you define “happiness.” Do you look for quick fixes? Do you define “happiness” with a number? Do you believe achieving happiness requires sustained action or just a quick burst of energy and effort? Think about these questions and entertain the idea of your body changing in relationship to your mind changing.
Blog spot highlight of the week related to this topic.
Yum Yucky documents her weight loss journey and looks like she’s having a BLAST doing it! She teaches us how to lose weight, have fun, and get healthy inside and out. Go to her blog page by following this link: Yum Yucky
Andie Mitchell eloquently takes us through the highs and lows of life that we all feel on our weight loss journeys. When you read her blog, you know you’re not as alone as you thought. Go to her blog page by following this link: Andie Mitchell