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Monday, July 7, 2008

Highest Ground

Stevie Wonder. Can't go wrong with da man. So, when you visit Til I Reach My Highest Ground blog, you get to groove to one of Little Stevie's (remember when they called him that?) best songs. Bop along. Burn a few calories.

Anyway, I dropped by and it's a cool blog--nifty artwork (the female illustration is how I've often envisioned myself in fantasies--the long heroine hair, the sleek physique, red dress, red lipstick (which I adore, and to heck with it's "aging" properties), the dusky skin, cause I was born with my natural tan!

I liked this quote from Oprah (talking about Marianne Williamson's counsel) from one of the recent posts:

In order to lose weight on a permanent basis, you want a shift in your belief about who and what you are. This is the miracle you seek.

I'm not on the same spiritual path as either of those famous ladies named above, but I am on one that also places a great deal of emphasis on faith, on believing, on the miraculous. And from what I've read (spiritually-based or psychologically-founded), believing in your ability to do better, be greater, achieve is essential. One must BELIEVE one can do great things in order to do them or one must believe in One who is The Greatest Of All working in us to do those great things.

Faith is a potent thing. Optimism is a powerful weapon. And self-understanding--learning why we want things, do things, don't do things--is invaluable. Necessary, even.

Why do we overeat? Is it just hedonism--all about the pleasure of food? Is it a chemical addiction to certain substances in what we eat? Is it bad habits developed from childhood? Is it the filling of an emotional void? Is it from boredom? Is it a way of expressing self-loathing? Is it a way to self-protect with maintaining fat? Is it laziness? Is it a physiology gone wacky keeping us from normal appetites?

What is it?

We need to learn the why, but then we also have to develop the "I can" that says no matter what the WHY is, we can overcome it, through force of will or through spiritual development, or through dependence on the God who is stronger than anything we can throw at ourselves or Him. Or through multiple tools, ideally.

I believe that a spiritual issue--sin--is part of my problem. I believe bad habits are part of my problem. I believe emotional eating is part of my problem. And a damaged body/physiology is also one of my burdens (autoimmune disorder, dead thyroid, etc).

It's a multi-prong attack I need: psychological, spiritual, behavioral.

I wouldn't be surprised if most of y'all need a multi-prong approach, too.

It's really exhausting, really intense to attack so many areas of weakness at once, and often I find that I'm shoring up this part while those other parts there and there and there are ganging up on me.

Maybe you, too, have multiple issues to address and it feels overwhelming.

Here's the thing: Believe you can do it. Believe you can learn what your purpose in life is, and that you can learn why you are damaging yourself with overeating and underexercising.

On days when you're sure you CAN'T, tell yourself over and over that you can. Others have done it. If another human being has done it, one with your similar situation, then you can. And I can assure you (and me) that others in our situation have done it. Just google up blogs and sites. Other folks with bad marriages, a history of abuse, chronic illnesses, financial struggles, a besetting set of sins, living in wartime, living with a dysfunctional family, dealing with bereavements, etc--these folks have overcome the odds and lost weight, started new careers, moved across continents, climbed mountains.

They didn't let obstacles keep them from the highest grounds.

Just think of someone like Lance Armstrong and what he did despite cancer taking its toll. Or Helen Keller. Or...your fave diet blogger. :)

Others have blazed dieting trails and told us the best tools for X and Y and Z issues.

You are never alone, really. Not as long as someone else showed the way.

I have to tell myself this every single day. That I can do it. That it's not impossible. That others have overcome and so can I.

It's still not ingrained. I have to consciously do it to keep myself from losing all the ground I've gained, which would only make it that much longer to get to my highest ground.

I believe that with my own surrender to God, first and foremost, in sync my own development of good habits (absolutely essential) and my own self-examination and self-understanding (can't skip this bit), I can make progress.

I believe with using tools, I can achieve the goal of greater health and less weight.

I believe with support from others, I can get through each day.

But I'm still a lazy butt too often (ie, just slip back into the self-pleasuring, easy way of eating too much). And I tend to isolate when I'm blue (depression plays its part). Those are really huge parts of the problem, too.

And our nation is set up to tempt us to eat. Just drive around and notice. Food, food, everywhere. Sights, smells, words drawing us in. It's like gluttony demons are running the food industry, I swear!

As a previous post said, change is hard. But staying obese is harder in the long run.

I believe I can change. I believe in a God who wants to help all His children achieve their purpose and overcome their temptations and set loose their self-destructive burdens. I believe in the power of our community to help us not give up, even when that's the only thing we really want to do.

Believe you won't give up. No matter what.

Every person out there has a purpose. We don't all know it for sure, what it is. Is it small, but important, or huge and important. It's always important. Is your purpose to help others achieve their weight goals? It might be. You never know! I've seen people with blogs that I find such a blessing, that I know one of their purposes is to offer that sort of exhortation and encouragement to me and others. Absolutely.

Fat gets in the way of so many purposes because it saps energy and causes loss of self-worth in too many of us.

Believe we are stronger than food, stronger than fat, stronger than laziness, stronger than our own insecurities, stronger than each one and all of our opponents and enemies.

Believe the highest ground is attainable.

Im so glad that I know more than I knew then
Gonna keep on tryin
Till I reach my highest ground
No ones gonna bring me down
Oh no
Till I reach my highest ground
Dont you let nobody bring you down (theyll sho nuff try)
God is gonna show you higher ground
Hes the only friend you have around

While I disagree with Stevie that God is our only friend, I do believe God is the most faithful friend and one available 24/7 for a lifetime. Which, well, is a very good and encouraging thing.

I also believe we can be friends to one another, with our words available for those who need it 24/7. That's not bad, huh?

So, if you're a praying sort, pray for us fatfighters today, would you?


Chubby Chick said...

Great post! And I BELIEVE that we can... and WILL... lose the weight!

The Better Idiot said...

Sorry, series is the word we use for season in the UK, didn't mean to panic you! Although there will be no new season in 2009 because Tennant is playing Hamlet in the RSC, so there are just 4 specials, and then a new season in 2010. The last episode you saw was the library? Dude, you've got an amzing three part finale to go yet, go watch it!

K. said...

Wow, what a great post! Thank you so much for acknowledging my blog and writing such an inspiring post. You are a great writer! I for one believe that you can indeed do it! Anything you set your mind to---and I am here to cheer you along the way.
Take care,