“The journey of a thousand miles starts with one step” – Lao Tzu.
I think what he forgot to mention is that sometimes we have to take the same step over and over again.
I know I did.
Around this time last year I wrote about my experience with the Whole30 program. I was just starting the reintroduction phase and very optimistic. *Sigh*. I’m not saying it didn’t work. I know I felt better and I stuck with eating and drinking healthier for a while but since I’m just finishing another 30 days should tell you something.
Or maybe I should just come clean and tell you that I’ve done this a couple of other times before this and just went back to the same old habits. Well, maybe not the same. I did learn something each time, but not enough to make all of the good habits stick.
Especially when shit hit the fan.
I still wanted pizza over vegetables, beer over water, and cookies over fruit. I’m pretty sure I still do. So when things go sideways I still have a tendency to fall back on comfort food. And I’m sorry but an apple is just not going to make me feel the same way as a cupcake.
But how messed up is that? That I equate comfort with food anyway. I know I’m not alone, but wow that is really messed up. I know we’re not born that way. It’s definitely a learned behavior, but how does that happen?
I’m sure there are some really smart people who have researched it and found the answer, but just haven’t figured out how to translate it so all the rest of us can understand it.
Or the food manufacturers have paid them off to keep it to themselves…
I know, I know, paranoid much?
I keep coming back to something, though, that none of us like to hear, but remains the crux of this problem. We all have free will. We all are only responsible for ourselves and our actions. We all make decisions about our health and our bodies every day whether they’re conscious or not.
So blaming my being overweight on the sugar that every food manufacturer uses in everything isn’t the answer. I can read. I can think. I can decide what’s best for me.
I can decide what’s best for me…
Huh, I think I may have just taken another baby step toward good health.
I know this time around I’ve caught myself thinking about things differently. Before I couldn’t wait for the 30 days to be over so I could go right back to eating the same crap that had caused me to gain weight in the first place. This time, though, I thought about all of the time and hard work I had already invested and I don’t want to throw that away.
Deciding what’s best for me isn’t depriving myself of anything. It’s choosing to eat something that I won’t regret later. It’s not going to trigger a PTSD event because having rigid rules about food reminds me of my childhood. It’s realizing that eating a healthy, balanced diet is the only way I’m going to be able to accomplish everything I’ve dreamed of doing in my lifetime. It’s knowing that food only offers comfort for the second it crosses my taste buds.
And if I have to take the same step more than once then I need to make it count. I need to learn something from it so I don’t have to do it again, and again, and again. So I don’t have to keep going around the same mountain…
I think that’s the point of this craziness we call life. We learn, we grow, we become a better person, we share so that maybe somebody else can have it easier.
I’m actually looking forward to seeing where I’ll be a year from now…