Tuesday, November 3, 2015

November 3rd, 2015 A Better Day Is Coming

November 3rd, 2015 A Better Day Is Coming

My schedule the last two days has been rather challenging. I've fallen behind a little bit on email and blog comment replies. If you've asked a specific question, I appreciate your patience.

After taking 3/4 of day personal leave yesterday, I was vague in the specific cause/need for this and it prompted a great question (and very considerately worded by the way) from an anonymous reader:

Can you say more about needing to take a day off? Were you in a bad mood, or feeling depressed? Did something specific happen (not asking for personal details)? Did you take the time because you needed to give yourself just a little bit more extraordinary care? The reason I ask is that I think it's helpful (for me at least) to hear what a trigger/bad mood might be, and how you pulled yourself out of it (even if it's just that you asked your friends for a helping hand). I, myself, had a crummy day yesterday, and it was all I could do not to stay inside and hide. I eventually got up, showered and got myself to school-- but it wasn't pretty. Any advice you have on this (or just anything that works for you) would be appreciated.

When I'm vague it's usually because being more specific might violate someone else's privacy. It might be a colleague or a loved one or anyone close to me. I wasn't in a bad mood or depressed yesterday, I was simply exhausted and needed to stay in bed longer.

But the deeper issue/question here: How do we navigate the ups and downs and still take the kind of care in harmony with our goals?  

Bad days happen. If my consistency is dependent on things being as easy and stress free as possible, I'm destined for trouble. Bad moods, stress, emotional situations, disappointments--all of these can happen suddenly and sometimes without explanation. Other times, the source is perfectly clear. Either way, I must recognize some solid truths:

Food isn't a fixer. It doesn't make everything magically better. It offers a delicious distraction at best. Excess food during stressful/emotional or otherwise, "bad days," can seem like the way to turn--but its offer of comfort is an illusion, a 'bait and switch,' if you will. I can't count the number of times I've retreated into binge mode, looking for an escape, something to make it all better--and then realized, not only is the instigating issue still an issue, now I feel worse then before, having sacrificed the integrity of my plan, again.

Awareness is key. When I feel a tilt in my mood coming on or when I'm suddenly faced with high stress/high emotions, I'm keenly aware of my natural reactions. It's in those critical moments when I must pause before these deep seeded behaviors play out in a bad way. My defenses must go to a higher level. My consistency and the integrity of my plan is too important to sacrifice. For what?? A bad day?? For real? Some might say--easy there fella, it's one binge, big deal...but it becomes a big deal, quickly.

The greatest damage of a binge was never the actual binge food, it was always the after effects--the psychological damage far outweighed the actual physical damage created. The emotional/mental breakdowns created post-binge, led to the end of weight loss attempt after attempt.

If I keep my awareness level high and I couple it with 100% self-honesty, then the pause I need in order to react differently, is created. It might even encourage me to deal directly with an issue, exploring actual solutions instead of solution illusions. But in those initial moments of turbulence and greatest vulnerability...

I reach out for text support. A simple text: "I'm having a tough one today, feeling vulnerable," can do magical things. Suddenly we're not alone. Suddenly our emotional circumstance isn't exclusive to our head. 

I write. Writing it out is a powerful way to gain a clearer understanding of the situation and better, how we feel and how we react to the situation. You don't have to share it on a blog. The power of writing, the therapeutic benefits of written expression still happens, even when it's for your eyes only. This blog is like a doctoral study of me, by me.

I meditate, I say a prayer--I connect with my spiritual side.

And through it all, I must constantly remind myself--this too shall pass. A better day is coming.

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Today was a better day. I had a great show this morning, I accomplished quite a few things by noon, left work--took care of a couple of errands, grabbed lunch--and a short nap before returning to work this afternoon to finish the production day. Then, I started my evening with some fantastic support interactions even before our Tuesday night support group and a coffee...love my coffee...I prepared some awesome food today, too! We had an absolutely wonderful support group conference call followed by a seriously delicious dinner--followed by a great workout--followed by picking up eight pounds of honeycrisp apples at 99cents a pound before the sale ends at midnight...because tomorrow they'll likely be three bucks or more a pound, again.

Yes, indeed, it was a much better day, today.

My Tweets Today:




































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

11 comments:

  1. You can always stew and freeze your apples and then if they look like they are going off but I reckon you'll get thru them before they rot 😃

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, TR! Great suggestions. I think you're right, though--I'll likely get through 'em!

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  2. Self care is key. I was tired and hungry when a plate of frosted cupcakes was placed into my car on Halloween. The frosting triggers me. I recognized the tired and hungry, so I went home, ate on food template, turned the lights out and napped. I did not participate in Halloween at my house.

    I could have really opened the door to the food addiction. Instead, I recognized I was tired, hungry, and getting anxious and I had been exposed to a binge food. Rather than acting out, I took care of myself.

    Next time, window down and good ventilation in the car. I had no idea or control that one of the teens I was driving would bring that plate.

    Non-food problems require non-food fixes. Glad you are blogging about them and using them. Karen P

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    Replies
    1. Wow, Karen--you handled that so wonderfully. Love this: "Non-food problems require non-food fixes." OMGoodness, yes.
      Karen, your continued long term maintenance and self care is inspiring to me. Thank you.

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  3. Halloween is a horrible time for me to get through. Didn't make it this year. I am living in new quarters and didn't know how many kids would be coming to the door. Next year - no candy in the house for Tricksters. Only had 3 kids come to the door so will have change (money) ready instead of candy. I'm OK with having fallen off the wagon and will be better prepared for ME next year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nancy, every situation and circumstance along this road provides an opportunity to learn more about how we work and react. With that perspective, it's R & D... and the D is your willingness to develop new techniques and strategies in dealing with similar circumstances in the future. Excellent idea to hand out change!!

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  4. I have called a few telephone OA meetings and tried to get a buddy. Many would like to call and talk for a long time, but I've had difficulty getting a text buddy. :( Cell phone minutes can be used up fast with telephone meetings and telephone support follow-up calls. :(
    I have unlimited texing on my cellphone account.
    ~~ Megan

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    Replies
    1. Don't give up, Megan. In the age of texting--you will find text support buddies. Have you clearly expressed your need and why long phone calls are not an option?

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    2. You are right. I should state texting only at the time I give my number and why. I'll give it another go! I bought honey crisp apples today; they ARE delicious. They were $2.47/lb at Walmart. Thanks for the recommendation! ~~ Megan

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  5. First Sean.. lets get things straight right now! "Red" apples need to stay right where they are! How awful of a poor apple. I actually feel bad for them because they do not have half the taste a Fuji or a Gala or a MacIntosh has... just sayin'.
    Nice day. glad you were able to reach out and contact your people. That is key.. I've learned that from you!!

    Hey.. have a great few days before the weekend! :)
    Rosie

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    1. LOL, Rosie-- I agree with you, 100%. I remember a time when there were very few varieties--remember... When I was a kid, there was red delicious, yellow and green ones...that was it...Now, the specialty apple growers have exploded. I recently listened to a fascinating podcast episode of Planet Money from NPR---all about apple growers. They might invest 5 years in a particular apple---and when they find the right combo...like the qualities of a honeycrisp, they get to charge a premium. Pink Lady apples is another example of wildly successful specialty apple. I go to the store now and constantly discover apples with names I've never heard of before...new orchards paying big profits and all in search of the perfect apple!
      In my opinion, all of the others should have closed down shop once the honeycrisp was perfected. It's hands down my favorite. Finding them at 99 cents a pound is unheard of, usually...they were back up to 2.99 a pound tonight.
      Making a point to find those people--develop those relationships---VERY important... It is critical for our continued success. We never need, nor should we try, to go it alone.

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