14 December 2009

The power in us all

I've been doing a fair bit of thinking recently, about my long (often uphill) journey through the last couple of years from the original 'fat lass' to where I am right now. That, by the way, is a pound up from last week, so the scales are dead on the ten stone mark again. I'm not sweating this though, as last week was quite heavy on the celebration meals and I expected a little rise. However hard I tried to be as sensible as possible I still ate things I would normally avoid and more than I would eat usually. Still, ten stone is much more comfortable a place than sixteen stone used to be! Anyway, enough of that.

I know I've said something similar in the past, but it's high time I mentioned again how very grateful I have been to read comments from other bloggers which support or comfort me. And it's also been so amazingly helpful to stumble across little bits 'n bobs in other people's posts - people who are trying (and usually succeeding) to lose weight, or those who have been there, done it, got the tee-shirt and now wear a new one a size or two (or more!) smaller.

I'd say that, ninety nine times out of a hundred, these useful snippets don't take the form of 'you must do x, y or z and you'll lose lbs' but are throw-away comments which reveal what the writer happens to be doing and why they find it helpful.

Of course, I haven't tried out every single suggestion I've seen, but I have incorporated quite a few little hints and tips along the way into my plan for a new 'me'. Things like relatively insignificant (but still invaluable) ways to increase the amount exercise I do or healthy substitute foods to try out, to help to kill off the desire to nibble (or worse). Generally, these take the shape of good common sense ideas, but ones I hadn't ever thought of for myself.

The most valuable snippets, in some ways, have included the things which made me realise that my struggles are not unique. Showing me that I wasn't a complete oddball for what I was feeling or experiencing... just pretty normal really. These posts may have related incidents that made me think 'oh yeah, that's right', or things which helped to motivate (or re-motivate) me, or they may just have explained the everyday struggles the writer was going through which mirrored my own.

So I offer a heartfelt 'thank you' to all you unsung heroes out there who have helped me without ever knowing you were doing it, as well as to those of you who have sent me support via the comments. Thank you! And I send the biggest 'thanks' to my darling lovely hubby for putting up with every up and down along the way, and helping me more than he'll ever realise.

But I'd like to highlight one other thing, and it's something I've read many, many times in other people's posts but am only now finally beginning to understand properly and truly believe in. It's worth repeating.

...it is that WE each hold the power to change our lives, to embark upon, and stay on, the journey to reach where (and who) we really want to be. It is in each and every one of us. We are the only people who can truly shape our own lives and we are the ones in control of our destiny, whether that means success or failure. Others can help along the way, either directly or by offering up the sort of snippets I've been talking about, but only we can accept or decline that assistance and take action to make the changes we want to see.

I may be a bit dumb at times, but it took me a looong, long time (and many failed diets) to come to this acceptance. For a long time, a little part of me still wanted to blame someone, anyone, for the physical and emotional mess I had got into and it took quite some time for me to see that the 'someone' was only ever me. I've still not quite figured out why I was so unable/unwilling to take it on board. As I say, it took me a long time.

But I eventually 'got it' and took charge of my life making some decisions that, along with the snippets and help, initiated the changes I had to make to get where I am now. I don't regret it.

I recently read a short passage in 'The Secret Life of Bees' which really brought this acceptance of 'it's down to me' home once again.

A supporting character, August Boatwright, talks to Lily, the central character, about the power she can find in herself (in the book, she relates this to the Mary in Chains figure). August says 'You don't have to put your hand on Mary's heart to get strength and consolation and rescue, and all the other things you need to get through life... you can place it right here on your own heart. Your own heart.'

She goes on to say 'When you're unsure of yourself,... when you start pulling back into doubt, she's the one saying "Get up from there and live like the glorious girl you are." She's the power inside you, understand?'

So why not join me and tap into the power that's there inside yourself and make the changes you want to see in 2010? Who knows, if you do, it could be your best year ever.


Diane Fit to the Finish said...

It's so helpful and motivating to really believe in yourself. At first I think my belief in myself was very limited. But as time went on I felt stronger and more capable.

Great post!

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