Goals are for Motivation, not Judgement
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
I joined SP on 8/17/13. I had been learning more about nutrition and ran across the website when looking for nutritional information on something I was considering eating. It was love at first sight and after entering my starting weight, ending weight and weekly weight loss goals, the goal setter calculated my "end" date as 11/13/13..today..my 45th birthday.
I can't tell you how perfect this was for my ever so structured brain. I love goals and am extremely compulsive about numbers. Logging my food and tracking points has been so soothing to my OCD monkey. As so many stories go, I followed along perfectly and lost a pound a week and then got distracted by other things in life. There I was three weeks ago resenting SP for showing I was failing and I found that I was being generally negative which is out of character for me.
Taking the time to slow down and address the issue, I realized that I was very disappointed in myself because I had fallen behind and was not going to reach my goal. The point of the reflection was to stop the negativity so I backed u[ and tried to look at the situation with fresh perspective. I had set the goal to give myself something positive to work toward. It worked for a while, but then it started to work against me. It was my goal. It was not an objective truth or natural law that I was working against. I could just let go.
This may seem like a no-brainer to most people, but I suck at letting things go especially when it comes to me and the whips I create for myself. I have read many many instructive things about this subject on SP over the last 3 months and I'm so happy that I was able to put them to use.
I started by giving myself a pat on the back for the great achievements that my hard work had already attained. Then I asked myself what my new objective was. Do I want to keep the target weight? Perhaps. At this point, it wasn't the target weight that was weighing down my efforts. Then I looked at the assumptions and asked myself about the weekly weight loss goal. The 1 pound a week initially selected was naïve. I can lose a pound a week. I know I can. I realized that I don't want to though. I don't want to make the extraordinary time and effort commitment to do that. It isn't worth it to me and it would not be nice for me to try to force myself to make the necessary sacrifices. Also, my thinking was messed up because I had an "end" in mind. There is no "end" to this. I have a target weight that will be with me for the rest of my life or until I decide to change it. I really don't care if it takes me years to get to the goal. This was a big revelation because I had not really embraced that I had already reached my very first goal without ever stopping to really appreciate it. I had initially set out to get to a healthy BMI and implement a toolbox of habits that would get rid of the very unhealthy weight in my waist. I did it! Great job and I'm sorry for not giving you the celebration you deserved!
So, what about a new goal? Do I even want a new goal considering how much the last one had me suffering? No, I did not want a goal like the first one. I will not give target weight goals that kind of power ever again. I will however have a goal that I have a healthy relationship with. It is only allowed to motivate me and if it starts to judge me, it is going to have to leave.
I set the calculator at 0.5 pound a week and the new target date is far out into the second quarter. I know that while it serves a purpose, it does not give me an effective tool for today, this week and this month. I set my new birthday goal so I would have just 10 pounds left for the final target weight. It was going to be a push, but just the kind of push that a goal is supposed to give you. Last week I realized I probably would not reach the goal but also realized I would still be at 145 and it is my 45th birthday. I can be motivated and happy with that! So now I'm going to head out for some exercise and then do a weighing which I typically reserve for Saturdays. This is my reward. This is me working with my goals so that we are in alignment and staying positive and realistic.
Thank you everyone for your support!