Monday, December 11, 2017

December 11th, 2017 Not A Diet

December 11th, 2017 Not A Diet

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded today's water goal, and I stayed connected with good support.

I received a similar question today to one I answered a while back. Instead of rewriting it, I'm doing a republish on the question and reply.

How did you determine your non-negotiables and how do you stick to them when things get hard?

First of all, you determine what's reasonable. Once you define the most critical elements of your plan boundaries- and you've determined they're doable on a typical day- then you make what I call an iron-clad decision. It's a promise to you from you, to give this element a non-negotiable stance come what may. 

Think of it as a boulder in a stream. Life is the rushing water. No matter how fast that water rushes, the boulder isn't moving. The boulder isn't sacrificed or compromised. The water has no choice, but to make its way around it- and it does. And the boulder in the stream stands strong.

On a deeper level, this creates growth/development in other areas, like coping skills- it develops growth in learning what good accountability and support skills are about. The more consistency you gain, the more you'll prove to yourself that it is possible to maintain your plan in the toughest of times.

And that's the idea, a plan, not a diet.

You're developing a plan that takes care of what you need. In honoring your plan, you'll notice the side effect of consistent weight loss. This is what Dr. Lerner (Transformation Planet Podcast Episode 7) means when he speaks of the focus NOT being a diet, but rather, a food plan you can live with indefinitely. And it can still have the boundaries you need to feel satisfied. Especially when you reach maintenance mode and increase your calories.

But again, it's all about the daily plan--and not all about the numbers on the scale. If you take care of your daily plan-the weight loss will come.

How important are your non-negotiable elements? 

It is the consistent maintenance of what you're willing to define as non-negotiable that creates growth, and in that--a natural evolution of you unfolds.

Think once more about the boulder in the stream. The boulder stands strong against the current and because it does, the stream evolves--changes course, grows and with the gift of time, develops different paths and canyons. If the boulder simply moved out of the way every time the water came rushing--the stream would have an easier path--one of least resistance. In the path of least resistance, nothing changes. No growth, no canyons.

I've often written about the effects of maintaining non-negotiables. The only way our food plan develops/evolves over time is by maintaining the integrity of the plan. All growth, all of our positive progress--it all depends on our willingness to create, accept and embrace certain non-negotiable elements of our plan. Determining what's reasonable is VERY important. If your non-negotiable is extreme, doesn't fit what you naturally like--is overly restrictive and monumentally demanding, it'll be a horrible experience.

Make it doable for you.

If we sacrifice our plan for whatever reason, the boundaries are broken and growth is stunted. If we develop a habit of consistently sacrificing the integrity of the non-negotiable elements of our plan, we literally become stuck--and often this "stuck" place becomes the very definition of insanity.

Life keeps coming. And there's no such thing as a "perfect time." There's only here and now and with it, a forever fluctuating rhythm to life. Let life flow around the boulders of your non-negotiables... and with the passage of time, you'll experience growth--you'll see and feel the changes, mentally, spiritually, and physically.

Developing your plan for accountability and support is important.

When we decide to create non-negotiable elements of our plan, we lose a coping option. Excess food was always my number one coping tool, albeit not a good one. It lied to me every time--because it never fixed anything.

When I developed my non-negotiables, it strongly encouraged me to either seek positive ways to cope or find other destructive ways to do it. We gotta cope one way or another.

My skills haven't been and still aren't perfect, but it's a practice each and every day.

Staying connected with good support and seeking out those connections in whatever way you can is critically important. There are many options available!

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Sunday, December 10, 2017

December 10th, 2017 Really Good

December 10th, 2017 Really Good

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my water goal, and I stayed connected with exceptional support.

I rested very well this weekend. Today was a little off-tilt, food schedule-wise, but I maintained the boundaries of my plan.

I picked up mom for a store trip and dinner out this evening. We had a really good conversation.

I'm up way too late for a work night.

Today's Accountability Tweets:




Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Saturday, December 9, 2017

December 9th, 2017 Late

December 9th, 2017 Late

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, I had a short but good workout at the YMCA, and I stayed connected with good support.

I spent the evening as a designated driver for some friends. They bought me a nice dinner! It was a good evening. I stopped by for a visit with mom a couple times today. We're planning on having an outing tomorrow.

It's late! Goodnight!

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Friday, December 8, 2017

December 8th, 2017 So--Uh...Coffee!

December 8th, 2017 So--Uh...Coffee!

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, and I stayed connected with good support.

I spent the night at my daughter's and son-in-law's place last night. I enjoyed having some quality time and conversation with Amber. Both of my daughters are pregnant with girls and back to back March-April due dates! This coming spring will be blessed!

I didn't expect today to be as long of a workday as it turned out, but it's the season in the broadcasting business. It didn't help that a very important quarterly responsibility of mine was in need of getting caught up ASAP--like, today. It couldn't wait. I'm glad it's done. Now I can implement a plan to keep me from getting behind. It's one of those paperwork requirements with little room for error or tardiness. Very important! I left work at 6:30pm and headed straight for Starbucks. I was tired but didn't want to go home and crash, so--uh...coffee! (too much coffee for me today--I admit!)

I enjoyed the coffee and relaxed for a few minutes before preparing a nice dinner--and as I often do, I turned on Netflix while eating. I was enjoying the comedy of Craig Ferguson well after finishing dinner--and next thing I know, I'm waking up to my phone ringing...it was my mom. I must have sounded intoxicated because mom asked, "are you okay?" Yes, yes--I'm fine... aside from not the best evening plan--I'm totally fine! :)

I have plenty of time this weekend to work on some personal projects (podcast is one of those!) and to get a structured workout plan together-- a schedule that's sustainable, maintainable, and consistent, even when my schedule isn't.

Goodnight!

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Thursday, December 7, 2017

December 7th, 2017 Super Short

December 7th, 2017 Super Short

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, and I stayed connected with good support.

Keeping it super short tonight with a Tweets Only post.

Goodnight!

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

December 6th, 2017 Be Kind

December 6th, 2017 Be Kind

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed connected with good support.











































When I make time for exploring my gratitude list, it refocuses my energy to a very positive place. I paused to do that this morning. It was needed in those moments.

I enjoyed a surprise visit from a good friend today. Dave was just passing through and decided to pop in for a short visit. It made my day. I look up to him for so many reasons, not to mention he's one of the few comedy writers that can make me literally laugh out loud. I'm in awe of his talent. We agreed to do another stand-up comedy show together, very soon.

I included "before" and "healthy weight" photos tonight because looking at some of my old pictures reminds me of things I must always remember. My continued maintenance requires a daily practice that goes far beyond the food plan. It is the non-food elements that bring structure and support to my day. The list is long: Staying connected in support exchanges, doing my short morning meditations, positive visualizations, prayers, examining my gratitude list, helping someone else when and where I can, and keeping an honest inventory of things going well and things I'm willing to improve, and also--and this is a biggie--remembering to be kind to me. Minding the inner dialogue and shifting it from negative to positive, loving, and kind is paramount to my continued maintenance--and is certainly something requiring a daily practice.

It's interesting to me how freely automatic we extend kindness, compassion, care, and genuine concern for others, yet it takes a daily practice and regular reminders to extend the same to ourselves? Anyway, that's my experience.

I had a nice visit with mom. She was in good spirits tonight and that's always wonderful to see.

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

December 5th, 2017 No Hands

December 5th, 2017 No Hands

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded today's water goal, and I stayed well connected with good support.

In my experience, it's critically important to take pause for not only deciding on your on-plan approach in particular circumstances but also pausing to remind yourself of the importance of you and how your plan boundaries are set to ultimately take extraordinary care of you. Clearly defining those boundaries has been paramount to the consistency of my plan. 

Maintaining the boundaries of our non-negotiable elements fosters growth in every other area of this process. When we disregard those boundaries, it stunts our growth and the result is often: We feel stuck and feel like we're doing the same thing over and over.

If consistently maintaining the boundaries of our plan is what brings growth and a natural evolution of the plan--and that consistency is what brings about positive progress, then we must first look at the plan--and make sure it's something we can maintain.

If it's too extreme, we're setting ourselves up for disappointment.

But if we start small and with simplicity, and it's something we can work with inside the boundaries of the plan--that's when something magical starts happening. The challenge becomes the action of releasing judgment for what we might perceive to be an imperfect or incomplete plan--when all we're trying to do is get started from a place where consistency is the focus--and trusting that this approach will allow for a natural evolution of our plan. On the opposite side: If we decide we can't move forward unless everything is perfect within some elaborate "ideal" plan, we're setting ourselves up for a serious struggle with starts and stops.

One of the biggest threats to my consistency is emotion/stress levels.

One thing that's really helped me in this area is to examine not only my current state of mind and emotion but also my expectations for food at any particular moment.

Do I expect it to take me away from and improve emotional/stressful circumstances?

Or do I expect it to simply provide energy and nourish me physically?

Looking at my own expectations pushes me in the direction I need to make more progress toward handling things in ways that truly work, instead of me constantly relying on and believing that escaping into the food will help.

The food does provide a temporary reprieve from the circumstances at hand, but it's never improved the things I avoid, ever. In fact, when I turn to food for these things, it compounds my issues. I try to remember that often.

My continued recovery depends on a daily practice of my plan. I must always stay connected with support. The act of seeking and giving support is paramount. I can't do it alone. I don't know anyone who has done it alone in any kind of long-term sustainable way.

I often refer to the different elements of my plan as my "rails of support." I hold onto those rails every day. If ever I wake and say, "look, no hands," get ready to witness a hard fall.

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Monday, December 4, 2017

December 4th, 2017 It's About You

December 4th, 2017 It's About You

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my water goal today, and I stayed connected with good support.

What's this all about? 

It's about progress, not perfection. 
It's about how you feel, not a number. 
It's about you and for you, not about or for anyone else. 
It's about living, not dying. 
It's about dreaming, not dreading. 
It's about freedom, not imprisonment. 
It's about opening your mind to the possibilities, not closing it to the changes. 
It's about acceptance, not rejection. 
It's about nourishing, not depriving. 
It's about a broadly consistent importance level, not short bursts of narrow focus. 
It's about wanting, not forcing. 
It's about doing your best, not trying to do another's best. 
It's about today, not tomorrow, or next week or the first of the month or January 1st. 
It's about committing to consistency with all your heart and holding on tight, not a halfhearted commitment easily released with the slightest breeze. 
It's about you deserving better because you do. It's about you being important...
because you are important.

Today was a good one. I enjoyed my food plan and engaged in some fantastic support connections. The week 1 Monday night conference call support group was tonight, and wow--we've got a great team of people! If you're interested in joining our Tuesday night early or late groups, we have room for you! Simply email me with questions and I'll answer right away! transformation.road@gmail.com It's not too late to join us!

Today's Accountability Tweets:
Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Sunday, December 3, 2017

December 3rd, 2017 Time, Time, Time

December 3rd, 2017 Time, Time, Time

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed connected with good support.

During past weight loss attempts, I was always worried about time. How long will this take? At my heaviest, the answer was often enough to discourage and ultimately derail my efforts. When I decided to stop worrying about time, I shifted the focus to me and the choices I knew were right and good. Time does its thing and I do mine, and occasionally we recognize each other. And soon I'm reminded of Simon's lyric: “Time, time, time, see what's become of me, while I looked around for my possibilities..."




Today's Accountability Tweets:




Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Saturday, December 2, 2017

December 2nd, 2017 Produce Run

December 2nd, 2017 Produce Run

Today: I maintained the integrity of my maintenance calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded today's water goal, and I stayed connected with support.

After yesterday's long schedule, I did some much needed relaxing today before making a trip to the store for a fresh produce run. Avocados 2 for $1 and 98cents per pound Honeycrisp and Ambrosia apples get my attention!

Tonight's visit with my oldest daughter was a good one. We were long over-due for a good conversation. I must do the same with my youngest very soon! Both of my daughters are expecting daughters of their own in the spring. By the time April rolls around, I'll be a Po-Po X's four!!

I'm turning in a little earlier tonight. I need more rest!

Maintenance mode is going well. Many blessings! I'm grateful; immensely grateful. 

Today's Accountability Tweets:


Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean





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