Being able to rely on excerpts from the over 1500 archived postings on this blog, is a real benefit to me. Occasionally, quite often actually, I'll have a day where something I've written about applies perfectly--still, I'll spend time sorting out an updated version. Other times, the excerpt I find just nails it for me that day--and why write the same thing twice? The following excerpt from May 7th, 2015 fits very well tonight. I'll follow it up with some updated thoughts:
I've written about the "life stream" and the "fundamental elements stream" and how they must run parallel to one another and not cross.
If we allow life and all of the energy it takes to maneuver, to negatively affect our ability to maintain consistency in the daily elements of our extraordinary care, then it always will. The frustration of inconsistency will be a common theme if the life stream is allowed to dip down into the fundamental elements stream on a regular basis.
And if we get too carried away, making the fundamental elements all consuming, then we run the risk of it crossing up into our life stream. And that's when it isn't any fun and we dread what we're doing every day.
I've had several challenges of late where I really had to remember the power of this "parallel streams" philosophy. I've discovered, when life demands more attention, we don't have to let go of the elements giving us our success, but we can scale back the amount of energy it uses to operate. We don't sacrifice the integrity of the elements, we just do what we can do. For me--on super busy days, I have three requirements: 1. Stay within my calorie budget 2. Hold my abstinence from sugar sacred 3. Send the accountability tweets and write this blog--even if it's just the tweets of the day.
I shared with some support buddies that if I exercised tonight it would be a bonus. I made the bonus! I had a good workout. My calorie budget is solid, I abstained from sugar, I live-tweeted the accounts of my food and exercise and I've written this blog.
I'll hit the pillow realizing that my "life stream" required a little more attention today, but it didn't cross over and become road blocks for my "fundamental elements stream." This perspective helps me balance.
Keeping the "Life Stream" and "Fundamental Elements Stream" from getting entangled isn't always easy.
The first thought in getting to a place where it's clearer, in my opinion, is recognizing that food doesn't fix things. Excess food doesn't help change things needing attention in our lives--or make things we wish wasn't a part of our lives, or story, go away.
The best it ever was for me, was a distraction--a temporary escape into a world of great tastes, complete with illusions of comfort and peace. The binge episodes of my great escapes never once provided perspective, understanding, compassion or solutions for my issues. But it was my answer, every time. It was my go-to in times of stress, in times of high emotion--the low times and yes, even the good times. Because eventually, I allowed the excessive amounts of food to buffer everything, leaving me in a constant state of emotional vacancy and abundantly full, many times to the point of sickness. This constant avoidance of feelings, translated to a stunted emotional growth--and this lack of emotional maturity affected most everything in my life in a negative fashion.
The emotional growth I've experienced throughout the seven plus years of this transformation has been ten times, maybe more than what it was in the adult years leading up to its beginning. When I stopped stuffing my emotions down--suffocating them with excessive food, that's when I started feeling things in their purest form. And that's where the avenues of support become critically important--spiritually, through like minded people in support groups--and through our individual exploration via writing and expressing ourselves--maybe it's in a private diary, a journal--or even a blog like this. However it's done, it's important. Therapy--some sort of counseling, can be HUGE, too--it was for me.
And then, the more experience we amass in sorting out our emotions, the better equipped we become in handling things, come what may. And at that point, maintaining separation of these streams doesn't seem so impossible.
Did I reach a point where I retreated back to excessive food? Of course I did. If you're a regular reader, you're fully aware of my 164 pound relapse/regain. When I ran back the other way, it was after I threw down every tool I had collected along the way. The accountability and support measures--gone, tossed them aside. The writing out how I was feeling along the way? Yeah--didn't think I needed it anymore. I had convinced myself that I was solid as a rock and could easily do it on my own. I had it figured out, by golly. Oh dear--what a humbling 164 pounds of regain provided me...and I'm so grateful it did.
Upon starting my turnaround from regain, I added abstinence from refined sugar to my plan. Suddenly, the binge trigger bio-chemical reactions were no longer affecting the addiction center of my brain--and like an answer to a prayer, it made everything much clearer, more peaceful and relatively stable. This stable foundation continues to provide a platform for continued growth.
And I'm always evolving, growing, learning and living. I do not know it all. I cannot do this on my own. I'm holding the many hands of support every single mile along this road.
Today's Live-Tweet Stream:
Bottoms up! 2 cups water, 20 push-ups and 10 squats-DONE. Now, I get coffee. #morningdeal helps set a tone. pic.twitter.com/fJgxyTVKAh— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Gimme that cup! Colombian roast w/three tablespoons half & half. This & a to-go cup w/same. Good morning! 120 cal. pic.twitter.com/fjlzuoAuNr— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Breakfast in MFP... pic.twitter.com/pih7nVfbd9— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Omelet w/2 egg whts-2 whl, 93g avocado, red pepper, Ezekiel toast w/18g strwbry SF all-fruit & 5.4oz apple. 518 cal. pic.twitter.com/m7BskyCQYf— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Things starting changing for me when I stopped focusing on the reasons I couldn't do it, and… https://t.co/KcU5dslqPL— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Midmorning dark roast with three tablespoons half & half. 60 cal. pic.twitter.com/XAMJfFQaVy— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Holdover until lunch. 4.2oz banana w/16g creamy natural peanut butter. 167 cal. pic.twitter.com/vK5f2QtAln— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Lunch in MFP... pic.twitter.com/9trRG9Mk3u— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Fajita Salad w/8oz fajita beef, lettuce, salsa, jalapeños, 15g sr crm & 28g wht cheddar. 154g CaraCara orng. 565 cal pic.twitter.com/OtzP22n1YS— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
After lunch cup of dark roast with two tablespoons half & half. 40 cal. pic.twitter.com/nxfb9hlu1A— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Two tablespoons half & half in my post-short-nap coffee. 40 cal. pic.twitter.com/iweMYHuwNd— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 23, 2016
Dinner in MFP... pic.twitter.com/i2ENLn6CB2— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
Tonight's dinner features leftover food that needed cooked ASAP or tossed. I'm doing better at not wasting food! Too much of that, before.— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
Turf&Turf. Grlld chckn drumsticks, 2.7oz sirloin, 252g red potato w/15g sr crm & 2 tbsp half&half. Asparagus. 595cal pic.twitter.com/8BixhOS94s— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
Home body weight strength training, tonight. The plan: 30 push-ups 3/10, 20 squats 2/10, two planks- min 30 sec-goal-60sec., 1 min wall sit.— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
Workout complete. Tried to do video of my "plank face," but it was just too much breathing & grunting. Not pretty. Great core work, though!— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
5.3oz apple, 4.4oz regular orange & 119g Cara Cara orange. #lastfoodofday 194 cal. pic.twitter.com/s4LIzuVdR1— Sean Anderson (@SeanAAnderson) May 24, 2016
Thank you for reading and your continued support,