Monday, February 22, 2016

February 22nd, 2016 Am I Strong?

February 22nd, 2016 Am I Strong?

I recently wrote about installing rails of support to guide us along the way. In reading some of the archives, I found a similar post from January 2015.

From January 19th, 2015:

Every once in a while, I hear it: "Congratulations, you look great. You're so strong," or a similar quote. I accepted a version of this today from someone who I ran into at the grocery store, whom I hadn't seen in years. I don't think they're remotely aware of the relapse and regain period of this journey. I gracefully accepted the compliment with a "thank you, very much! I feel great too!"

Accepting a compliment and saying thank you instead of first listing off all of the reasons you believe their perception is inaccurate--is tough to do. It's important to embrace, though. I've found the urge to discount or immediately deny compliments has faded, but I still feel a little twinge in that direction. Old habits die hard.

Are we not worthy? It's not that, really. Yes, we are worthy. But I tend to examine things a little deeper, especially this notion that I'm super strong along this road.

Let me explain, please.

And keep in mind, I'm not discounting my success and where I am or what I'm doing. I'm simply offering perspective to this compliment I seem to attract every now and again.

If you took away this blog, the accountability Twitter feed, the calorie budget, added a dash of sugar or seven dashes (or, hey--just give me the bag of sugar, already), took away the social media support system I've built, took away the weekly support group I co-facilitate with Life Coach Gerri, and I was completely on my own...well, I assure you, I wouldn't be sitting here writing this blog post. I'd likely still be over 500 pounds, waking up every day hoping and praying it's not my last.

Am I strong? Or have I just learned and put into practice the power of structure? Without the support structure of my fundamental elements, I'm not strong at all. If you're a regular reader of this blog, you know exactly what happened when I abandoned most of the above mentioned elements: I gained back 164 pounds. I suppose I don't do anything small.

The message here is to build your system. Find what works for you. Lean on the elements you need to keep you motivated and focused toward what is good and right. Never underestimate the power of support from others. When we try to do this alone is precisely the moment it gets super hard. Perhaps I'm strong at building my support structure. But on my own, I'm not strong at all. I'm affected, I'm complicated and most of all, I'm human.

But if I see you out and about and you offer me a compliment like the one described above, I'll not disagree with you. I'll gracefully accept your compliment. And if you're searching for the same strength, I'll encourage you, too. Because it's in you, I know it is.
It truly isn't about building up enough strength to go it alone. It's about strengthening your rails of support. Build your support structure. Don't be afraid of accountability measures, just make sure they're designed to hold you accountable to something you can sustain long term. 

Today was a busy day. I came home to the smiling face of my grandson and that always helps. I took him back right before my Monday night support group conference call. That little guy is incredibly precious. He recently fell and hurt his shoulder. He's been to the doctor twice and they've determined it's a bruised collar bone and not broken. He favors it as if it were in a sling. I bought him a sling so he wouldn't need to think about it, but that lasted about 30 seconds. His new thing these days is saying "Thank you." He'll say "thank you...thank you....thank you... thank you..." until he gets a "you're welcome." It's extremely cute.

I loved my dinner this evening. Oh my-- baked cod and fresh cut and baked sweet potato was perfect for me. 

My Tweets Today:

Thank you for reading and your continued support,


  1. Hi Sean, How do you do your baked cod? Seasonings? What temp? Do you cover it?



    1. Janis, I've tried a a couple of different ways. The rule of thumb is 425 degrees and 10 minutes for every inch of thickness. I tend to cook it a little longer, just to make sure.
      I've tried it simply on a baking sheet with a light spritz of olive oil spray, salt and pepper. But that method seems to dry it out a little too much.
      Now, I bake it at 425 in a foil pouch for 15-20 minutes, regardless of thickness--then I take it out and bake an additional 5 minutes without the foil. This method retains the moistness I want while assuring it's perfectly done and flaky.
      As far as seasonings go, I keep it super simple--salt and pepper for me.


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