Last week I received an invitation. The envelope was bright pink with pictures of palm trees and stuck out of my snow-covered mailbox like a glossy Easter Egg. Victoria's Secret's bikini catalogue! I couldn't wait to open it.
My children needed a more patient and focused mother. My husband needed a wife that was truly able to listen and connect. I needed to stop allowing endless distractions to keep me from my goals and what I so badly wanted to accomplish. But I just didn't know how to get there.
I'm trying to come to grips with certain truths about aging. Like maybe it's time to surrender and stop with all the euphemisms. Maybe it's time to stop living in denial and accept what is. And yet.
Before we begin, I know there are lots of tonics, miracle vitamins, hormone therapy, cleanses and diets that have claimed to be the Fountain of Youth for those of us past age 50. So before you suspend belief or stop reading, check out this recent photo of me.
Acceptance, not rejection, is they key that unlocks the possibility of making the changes necessary to address our nation's obesity epidemic. In my experience, it is those who accept their weight and deal with it powerfully who achieve the most profound and lasting weight loss results.
When I was first diagnosed my priorities were crystal clear and I did not sweat the small stuff. Bit by bit, however, the minutia has crept back and now I once again get fully agitated when other drivers don't signal or I'm on hold with the cable company. On one hand, this indicates a return to normalcy, and that's a good thing. On the other hand, I don't want to lose perspective on what's really important.
Long-term maintainers may continue with some behaviors that helped them lose weight, but not all. Maintaining needs to feel easy and not as hard as losing. In order to achieve this, you need to focus on something called "habit forming."
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"The trip begins with a kiss..." (Roam, lyrics by Kate Pierson, Fred Schneider, Keith Strickland) Taking a ride down a split tar, potholed, soft-to-n...
After swimming I'll spend a few minutes in the hot-tub, then have a little schvitz. In the sauna the steam hisses and envelops me. My body feels well-worked as my mind and muscles relax. While I may not be the strongest, the fastest or the "most fit" person at the gym, at this point I just don't sweat it.
Chronic illness takes many things, but it teaches many things too. I have learned that life should be lived urgently, acceptance is vital to spiritual connection, and that I am more than my body. Power was found in the most unexpected place. Sometimes it takes a thief to show us just how resilient we are.
Health care isn't that different from other consumer industries except that we not only need our consumers to return to our establishment, but we also need to be increasingly more integrated into their lives and we are increasingly more responsible for their health outcomes.
But when you get off the cushion or out of the chair, and begin taking mindful action on behalf of your future self, you begin moving from a lovely place of quiet confidence. You future self will be most grateful, I promise.
The fact that women must slim down to feel or appear beautiful is a testament to the negative impact the media has on personal health and appearance. Those who can escape media influence are yet still victimized because beauty crazes trickle down through close ones who are affected by them.