Have you ever found yourself repeating the same action over and over again only to find yourself continuously disappointed by the outcome? I mean, let’s be honest, we all do it albeit unconsciously. I recently found myself in this unproductive cycle until it hit me…Shellie, get to the why!!! Why are you so surprised by the outcome when you’ve done absolutely nothing to change your actions?
So, what sparked this not-so-new revelation that I’ve lost track of my why? Well, it all goes back to my weight story, which is and will continue to be a running theme in my life. Yes, I’ve written a book that addresses the mental and emotional roots of our behavior with food. And yes, those principles I continue to find the most effective in navigating my food journey.
But, the last two years have thrown a new wrench into my well fashioned and fully formed routine…hormones.
I’d heard about it, I’d read about it…but now It’s time for me to wrestle with the frustration of hormonal weight gain. It literally moved in about 6 months ago. I was chugging along fine; making occasional adjustments here and there as I’ve learned to do over the past seven years when I started to notice my weight creaping up.
It was insidiuous at first; probably because it starting taking hold in December when I typically expect to gain some weight. The problem is that the extra pounds didn’t disappear as easy as the holiday decorations. In fact, they decided to stick around. What’s worse, those pounds invited a few of their friends to come hang around like uninvited guests.
I know some of you are biting your lip about now because you know exactly what I’ve been feeling. The well-honed routine I’ve followed for years just isn’t getting the job done anymore.
Hmm…so, I hit Google hard researching all the words: hormonal weight gain, perimenopause, causes, symptoms…to get to the why behind my spiraling weight gain.
Unlike past years, creating a calorie deficit was just not going to cut it anymore. I needed to shift my focus from how much I was eating to the kinds of foods I was eating. I am a self-declared carb junkie and my post-50 body was saying, “Nope, not anymore!”
Ok body, I get it…I’ll change things up!
Well, that was about six weeks ago. I’ve lowered my carb intake, cut way back on sugar and I’ve stopped eating after dinner.
Here’s the point in the story that I come to my “get to the why” lesson for today.
Most of us have struggled with the scale at one point or another in our lives. I knew not to weigh-in too much in the first couple of weeks, but around week three I found myself walking over to the scale every morning. Initially, it awarded my A.M. pilgramiges with signs of downward movement.
But, then around two weeks ago my progress came to a screaching halt. I hadn’t changed my new habits, nor had I dipped in my resolve. Nope, I’m doing the right things; however, the scale refuses to award me for my efforts. In fact, it appears dead set on moving in the wrong direction.
Yet, every morning I find myself walking to the scale, hoping that my persistence will reveal something different. Then, when it doesn’t, it’s like a kick to my resolve.
Have I developed healthier habits? Yes. Does my research confirm that these habits will contribute to a healthier me and lessen my chances for developing secondary health issues? Yes. Are there any other reasonable adjustments I can make to my current eating habits without going overboard? NO.
Then, why do I insist on weighing myself everyday when the practice does absolutely nothing positive for my progress or my resolve?
Why do we insist on performing the same rote actions only to find ourselves dealing with the same negative outcomes?
For years, I’ve relied on the scale to provide an objective benchmark of my current weight. But now, my weight fluctuates widely depending on how the hormones decide to rage on a given day.
People change and circumstances change. If an action that used to positively reinforce your mood or outlook no longer produces the same results, then it’s time to ask yourself why you’re still performing it.
The auto-pilot syndrome is real. Often, we do what we’ve always done because we just don’t seem to have the time to explore why we feel bad. In fact, a lot of us just assume we’re tired and cranky because of our schedules, when in reality it’s because the way we go about our daily duties just isn’t working for the people we are today.
Finally, we get to the “C” word that so many of us resist. We are just plain-out scared of change. Our past successes can paralize us from changing actions that used to reap positive results.
I think you get the idea at this point. Take some time. Schedule it in if you need to. But find some time to think about your life and your routine. Do your daily actions fit who you are today? If not, it’s time to get to the why.
God always calls us to examine the whys in our lives because it’s the why that reveals what’s truly in our hearts.
Test me, Lord, and try me,
examine my heart and my mind;
So, I’ll be saying goodbye to my daily weigh-ins for a while, but I’ll keep pursuing all the positive changes I’ve made to my daily routine. Why?…because those are the things I can actually control, while the rest I ultimately have to leave in God’s hands.