I was overweight/obese/morbidly obese for a decade. A decade is a long time. Four of my children haven’t even lived that long, and even my oldest child just turned 19 this past week. Ten years of weight struggles brought many, many fruitless attempts to lose weight.
As I was reading through blogs this week I realized that I occasionally see people making the same kinds of mistakes I did along my path. Sometimes those mistakes cause them much angst, and other times I see people putting their mistakes in perspective and moving on. I wish I could have been more like those people who take it all in stride. They have the confidence in themselves to believe that although they messed up, they haven’t ruined their chances at improving their health and getting to a healthy weight.
I was thinking about some of the mistakes I made and as I was thinking about them, I kept coming back to the one mistake that I made every single time I tried to lose weight.
I didn’t believe I could really do it.
Many times I had joined Weight Watchers, started following the “diet of the month,” or committed to just doing better, but underlying all those attempts was the complete lack of confidence in myself. I’d start out with the best of intentions, but by day 4, 5 or 25 I had quit trying to get the scale to move under 300 pounds.
Sure I made mistakes like eating too much candy for breakfast (true), or failing to incorporate exercise into my day, but I may have been able to overcome those very common mistakes if I had really believed in myself. I’d make a mistake and instead of being able to look at it as part of the process towards really changing my life, I felt like that one mistake was confirmation that I could not lose weight. I was incapable of staying committed to a program and was destined to be fat.
I was wrong. One mistake doesn’t ruin anything. But not believing in myself could have.
That last time I lost weight I realized that there were a lot of things in my life I did well. Weight control was just one thing I hadn’t learned yet, but that didn’t mean I couldn’t learn a new lesson. I started with that thought: Weight control was just a new lesson to learn. Little by little I made progress, made mistakes that didn’t cause me to quit, and learned the new lesson. Confidence came slowly at first but success bred more confidence, until at last I knew I couldn’t fail. I could not fail.
How do you feel when you see those words applied to yourself? I cannot fail. I cannot fail.
Where are you right this minute? Do you really believe in yourself? Diane