Friday, July 18, 2014

July 18th, 2014 Off The Merry-Go-Round

July 18th, 2014 Off The Merry-Go-Round

I sat down for lunch right next to the box of donuts someone brought to work. They were left on the table for anyone to grab for a quick sugar fix. I didn't. Not only did I not, I sat there enjoying my lunch without the slightest compulsion in the direction of the donuts. After lunch, I contemplated a good question: What keeps me from indulging the most? Is it my abstinence from sugar, keeping the addictive pleasure sensors in check? Or is it the accountability and support system I have in place? Or is it a combination of both? 

All I know is, it was a short four or five months ago when a similar box of donuts was left on the table and I patiently waited for everyone to leave the studios before privately stuffing two of them into my face. But today, not even an inkling, not the slightest itch? It was as if the box didn't even exist. The donuts no longer possessed a power over me. I wasn't looking for the pleasure they provide, instead I was focused on the pleasure I get when I'm remaining true to myself and taking extraordinary care. There isn't any deprivation or feelings of deprivation in my food plan. I eat well. I also know the truth about the pleasure of donuts for me...

It's a very temporary pleasure to partake, requiring a temporary suspension of all things important to me in exchange for a few sugary moments. Then, when the temporary suspension is over, the pleasure is replaced by a flood of negative emotions and self-abusive thoughts about what just took place. At the same time the negative emotions are taking hold, the bio-chemical reactions created by the ingestion of sugar are screaming: "Must have more and more!!" And since this reaction is coming in the moments I'm feeling horrible about myself, my defenses are considerably weakened or non-existent. The quickest (and most temporary) way to feel better in this situation is to follow the brain's command and eat more donuts...and the cycle repeats itself over and over. 

I'm off the merry-go-round. I've jumped off the cycle. I've given up on insanity. I no longer expect a different result, because I know what happens next, without fail, if I make that choice. So what keeps me? I think it's a combination of both, my abstinence from sugar and my support/accountability system. These two things are critical elements of my recovery and they must be embraced forever with the highest importance level.

I left the studio shortly after 4pm and headed straight for the YMCA for a solid elliptical workout. I had just enough time to workout, race home, shower, change and pick up some friends for the big Boston concert tonight. I thought about preparing a dinner to go, but I didn't allow enough time. Instead, I decided to go to the concert "without a net," fully trusting my instincts in selecting a good dinner from the unknown offerings available at the venue. I decided that if I couldn't find anything acceptable, then I would just need to wait for dinner until I got home.

After a quick scan of the menu, I quickly concluded there was only one choice for me: The sirloin steak. I asked the server to skip the bread, potato and seasonal veggies (the veggies at this venue are not very appealing to me)--instead I wanted cottage cheese and fruit with my steak. I also requested the steak be grilled without brushes of butter or other fat, a technique many restaurants employ. The server assured me the steak was 10 ounces. I cut it in half, kept one and gave the other half away to the person sitting next to me. I don't keep cottage cheese at home because of my track record of routinely eating the entire container in one or two sittings, so this was an opportunity to enjoy a favorite food in a controlled portion.

My ex-wife Irene, her steady Alen, my daughter Amber and her boyfriend KL also made it to the Boston concert. I'm so glad they all came up together for the show. I'm telling you, it's wonderful to have such a good relationship post-divorce. There's a lot of mutual love, respect and genuine happiness for one another.

The concert was amazing. Free concert tickets is a wonderful perk of my broadcasting career! If you get a chance to see Boston on their "Heaven On Earth" tour, I highly recommend! I was also very happy that everyone riding with me agreed to leave shortly after, because that's exactly what I preferred. I dropped off my passengers and made my way to the store for a few items, then home for a late night #lastfoodofday snack and some alone-time reflection on another successful day.

My meal Tweets today:






Thank you for reading,
Strength,
Sean

10 comments:

  1. You are one of the only people I know who can over do it on cottage cheese! I think the stuff is disgusting! You've found a good way to enjoy it in control though - good for you. Doesn't it feel wonderful to be off the viscous cycle? I think only those who have been on it can understand how hopeless it feels to be on it. Let's stay off it this time around, eh? (that's the Canadian in me :)

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    1. I know many people who feel the way you do about cottage cheese. For some reason, especially with salt and freshly ground black pepper, I can't get enough! It's firmly on my list of foods requiring extra measures & boundaries. It does feel amazing to be off that loop, eh! :) (Love the Canadian usage of "eh!") I agree--for anyone who has a relatively normal relationship for food, even if they have weight to lose--if they're not a food/sugar addict, the language used to describe the dynamic likely seems foreign.

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  2. Thank you for sharing your insight on not only the psychology that drives us (with "sneaking" sweets) but the chemical reaction in the body that sugar has on us. Enlightenment, that's what you are helping all of us with Sean! Those things we have not discovered for ourselves!!! Thank you!

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    1. Oh, Nancy--you're very welcome. It comes from a place of pure curiosity, a natural desire to explore the dynamics of "my internal code." Thank you for your readership and amazing support!

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    1. Sorry anonymous, this isn't a place for promoting your business with various links. Nothing personal, we just have some standards around here. Take care.

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  4. What great choices!
    As you know I actually work at a coffee/donut shop and I think that staying away from sugar and total abstinence from donuts really does help me to stay strong :)

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    1. Suzi, yes--and I don't know how you do it!! Occasionally being "exposed" to it is one thing--I couldn't imagine be surrounded by fresh donuts and pastries everyday. You amaze and inspire me all the time. Thank you.

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  5. I mentioned you in today's post :) Thank you for your vulnerability, transparency, and honesty. www.founditatthemarathon.blogspot.com

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    1. Jae, thank you! I will check it out and add your blog to my list! Thank you for sharing the address! :)

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