This week my mind has been on food. Since beginning this journey over 1.5 years ago I haven't ever really had killer cravings that I just couldn't handle (lucky, right?) and although I know there will never be any craving that comes my way that I can't handle (1 Corinthians 10:13), I certainly have had my share of close calls this week. We all know that just because we made 1 decision one day that we'd like to lose weight and become healthy that doesn't mean that suddenly our tastebuds for all things salty, sweet, and creamy go away- the 1 decision to lose weight is really just 1 of a million and is probably the easiest one you'll ever get to make on this journey.
The hard part comes when everyone else in the office is eating pound cake, ordering Chinese take out, and chowing down on fried chicken (yes, all 3 have happened at my work in just the last 2 weeks!) or when you've been "doing SO good" and just feel like rewarding yourself with a candy bar or fat/sugar filled fancy coffee drink (can you tell I'm speaking from experience here???) and it is THOSE small decisions that really is where the victory is lost or won.
SO- how do I handle what sometimes feels like cravings that are just impossible to say no to? (BTW- by cravings I'm referring to something that is not something you've PLANNED to eat and will not help you get toward your goal and live in freedom):
1) The battle here really isn't stomach vs. mind...it's really just all in our minds so that's where all of the "work" that I have to do in these situations takes place. I first ask myself a few different questions:
- If you give into this craving, who will be in control? The food or you?
- Why are you trying to put the imprisoning handcuffs of being addicted to food back on when they did nothing but harm you before?
2) I'll remind myself of my goals (therefore it's obviously important to first have clearly defined goals!) and decide which I would rather have...that reese's peanut butter cup or the satisfaction of getting into ONEderland at the end of the year?
3) I play pretend! I know this one might seem a little strange or weird but I can't tell you how many times it's saved me from chowing down on some nachos: I pretend that I'm a contestant on the Biggest Loser and then ask msyelf what I would think of myself if I was sneaking nachos while I was on the show? I remember when Rulon was chowing down on tortilla chips last seaons and I remember thinking, "What is he doing? Doesn't he know that doing that is just going to get him right back where he started from? What is his problem?" and yet I don't think it's that big of a deal if I were to sneak some stuff I knew wasn't good for me. Just because I'm not on the biggest loser doesn't mean I'm not big enough to be or that my situation is any less serious than theirs- and even though America isn't watching me, my friends, family, and co-workers are and they need someone to inspire them and show them that they can do it to. I'm in the same boat and I need to act accordingly.
Hopefully some of my little tricks will be helpful to some of you the next time you feel like you are being hard pressed to make any form of healthy decision. However, when all else fails (even my questions, mantras, and playing pretend), I can rely on the word of God that NEVER FAILS : "No temptation has come to you that is not common to the human race; and God is faithful- He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you can bear- but when you are tempted He will also provide a way out, so that you can stand up under the temptation." 1 Cor 10:13. Sometimes it is just comforting for me to remember that even though something may seem inevitable or unbearable, it's not- I can have control.
Also, because as I mentioned in my last post I've been on a kick of comparing pics from this years events to last year's, I thought I'd share another set; the pics below are of me from an event we do every year called Hope 4 the 'Burgh where we provide back to school items and health screening services to needy families in our community:
I'm guessing you can tell the one of me in the red is from last August and the one of me in green is from just a week or two ago. I can look at pics like this and remind myself of why making the right choices in all of the tempting situations truly is worth it.
As I head out, I did want to share about a new adventure coming up in my life- in 3 months I will be traveling with a few friends from my church to the nation of Israel. I cannot even begin to explain how excited I am about this opportunity- if any of you would be interested in learning more about the trip, why I'm going, or be intersted in helping me raise the remaining $1500 I need by next week to get there you can do it at my Israel blog site. Any help or prayers would be greatly appreciated :)