Gentle and Patient

Once again, God speaks to me through the public library.  🙂

 You think I’m joking…

The book is Fit From Within, by Victoria Moran.  I’m on the ninth of 101 chapters, so obviously I have a ways to go.  Actually, they are a page and a half or so each, so I don’t know if you’d call them “chapters.”  Anyway, the latest chapter is entitled “Eat Like a Healthy Human Being.”  Enough said.  That statement makes so much sense, I almost didn’t need to read the rest.

Eat like a healthy human being.  In other words, swear off dieting.  By whatever name you call it, dieting is both depressing and counterproductive.  Diets create overweight by tricking the body into believing there is a famine in the land and every calorie is precious.  Besides, deprived people overeat when the period of deprivation is up–even those who have never had a weight problem and have rarely overeaten before.

Alter the cycle by eating like a healthy human being inestead of a sanitarium patient on a prescribed and monitored diet.  This is the middle path.  It is not sexy and exciting, nor is it agonizing and dramatic.  Nonetheless, it works.

Although it is a gentle approach, it does take some mettle.  It’s easy to think, “If I weigh 160 with dieting, I’d probably be 260 without it.”  Draw on your courage to convince yourself that dieting is simply the backside of binge eating.  They travel together.  You can do without both in your life.

There’s a bit more, but this is the gist of it.  (Gist?  Jist?  I never write that word down.  But I type like I talk, for the most part.)  Does that sound deceptively simple to you?  I understand if it does, but it totally does NOT sound simple to me!  It’s hard for me not to want to keep count of things, as we learned from the insane morning scale ritual.  I want to count calories, or servings of food groups, or something!  God forbid we rely on our God-given mechanisms to tell us what we should eat, how much, and when!  But sometimes I do it, and it just feels so good.

Today, for example, I have eaten like a healthy human being.  Ish.  I wanted something fruit-like for snack when I got home, to tide me over while I cooked supper, but the closest thing I had was lemon cake.  I need to get groceries.  🙂  So I had my dessert first!  But then I had a very healthy, normal supper, and now this is one of those rare moments when I’m satisfied, and do not want any more.  Woohoo! 

One of the things about that passage that struck me was the phrase “gentle approach.”  I find that gentleness is actually difficult for me sometimes.  It goes hand in hand with patience, which I lack.  I don’t want to be gentle, I want to get results!  I don’t want to be gentle at work, I want to rush through the lesson plans to get everything done that I think the students need in the day, and it totally stresses the little kiddos out!  When I focus on gentleness and patience, we may or may not “get through everything,” but it’s actually more effective because everyone, myself included, has a happier day. 

I don’t want to be gentle with my workout routine, I want to be efficient, get into shape quickly, reach my goals ASAP.  So I overwork, get burned out, and don’t want to work out again for 6 months!  How is that helpful?  🙂

I don’t want to be gentle with housecleaning, I want to get things clean!  …  You know, I really can’t see a downside to that one!  🙂

Interestingly, I know deep down that gentle is the way to go.  I’ve thought for a long time that if I just eat like a normal person, and workout like a healthy person, I’ll settle at a healthy size for me.  I just get caught up in every “lose 67 pounds in 3 days” mentality that comes along.  🙂  And not just weight loss strategy, but everything else.  Pay off all your debt in two weeks.  The fastest way to bake a pie.  Clean your bathroom top to bottom in 4.5 seconds.  Whatever.

But you can’t rush life, and you can’t force your way through it.  You have to flow with it, take what comes, move forward but not skip ahead.  Live for this moment, right now, be here, not 20 pounds or 5 years into the future.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Becky
    Oct 31, 2007 @ 19:12:12

    Maybe you should always try eating a little dessert before your meals. This way you still get your dessert, and you won’t be tempted to binge on them later? Just a thought. It seems that whenever you DO eat dessert first, you’re satisfied and happy after your meals. 🙂


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