The habit of failure

Do you ever think to yourself, ‘gee, I’d sure like to exercise/read/write more, eat less, get up earlier, have a clean house (and not just when company is coming), watch less tv, be on facebook less, [insert your goal here]’?

*crickets chirping*

I will take your uncomfortable silence as aggreement. 

After a very difficult year, I have been wanting to make some changes. I am no longer waiting for the next big thing, I’m done having children, we are settled.  I should probably start acting like an adult.  (Do you think that will make me feel like one? That’s another post altogether.)

The two areas of my life that bother me the most are my weight and my house.  Both feel cluttered.  I think I had this idea that somehow I would just start moving more one day and the extra weight would just melt off.  Or I would just not worry about my weight (because, after all, we are all beautiful, right?) and it wouldn’t have any real effect on my life.  But while I was trying to love my body no matter what, I felt like crap.  My stomach hurt, all the time. I had no energy and was not wanting to do anything with the kids.  I couldn’t afford to buy new clothes and because I was constantly eating whether I was hungry or not (although I really did feel like I was constantly hungry) I was slowly but surely growing out of everything.  As much as I tried to convince myself that salads and fruit were the way to go, I was not making any healthy choices.  And for as much as I wanted to see myself as beautiful, I didn’t even recognize the person in the mirror.  Something had to give.  So I bit the bullet and went to my GP and got a referral to Weight Watchers.  I have been going for 13 weeks now and have lost 19 lbs.  Doesn’t sound like failure, does it?  I’m actually quite shocked, myself.  I fully expected to crash out or for it just not to work.  And I struggle with keeping positive as I feel like it was failure on my part to a) get to this place in the first place and b) need help from a program when I should be capable of dealing with this myself.  I still worry that as soon as I’m ‘allowed’ I’m going to go back to scarfing down the krispy kremes at every given opportunity, but we shall see.  What habits will I have at the end of this program?  Will they stick? Will I see food differently?  Will my appetite really change enough to keep me from putting it all back on again?  I don’t know.  I have to say, at this point, I don’t really have a lot of faith in myself.  I’ve disappointed myself too many times. (I know, I’m being a real Debbie Downer today, but I can’t just blog when I have something cute to say.)

That brings me to my house. I went back to the FlyLady website a couple of months back.  I’ve been there before, and tried a few things but never really stuck to it.  I just couldn’t get past the kitchen sink.  Well, all that changed when we finally got a dishwasher.  I love my dishwasher.  So this time, I got past the kitchen sink, I had a whole couple of weeks were I got dressed every day, made my bed, did a load of laundry, did weekly cleaning bits, scheduled my week, kept a proper diary.  I was working my way through the baby steps, building myself a control journal, feeling a little less cluttered, more in control.  Then, in the space of a week I got my period (which is somewhat debilitating at this time) and had to take some terrible medicine in preparation for a colonoscopy.  (Are you still with me, gentle reader?) Fun times. Needless to say I didn’t do much that week and by the time it was all said and done, I was back at square one; all my counters were cluttered, my sink was dirty, my laundry was backed up, and everything was dusty.  It was like all the good I’d done had never happened.  I still haven’t recovered. 

Everyone selling self-help/organizational books like to tell you that it takes at least 3 weeks to develop a good habit.  Apparently it only takes a couple of days to completely throw it out the window. And then where are you? Back at the beginning? Starting all over again?  How many times do I have to go through those three weeks before it becomes a habit that’s not quite so easily broken?

I am so tired of being deflated. Tired of feeling like it’s only a matter of time before something derails me and it all goes back to square one.  Tired of feeling like my life is cluttered with a bunch of crap that I don’t need or want but can’t seem to get rid of. 

I wish I had an inspirational ending to this post.  I would love to say, ‘this is how I conquered this problem’, but I got nothin’.  I’m open to suggestions. 

 

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5 responses »

  1. If it helps at all, I love you, and think that despite your cluttered kitchen counters, you are amazing and strong and inspirational.

  2. I love you. And this. And major congrats on the first 19 lbs!! That’s amazing!
    Sticking with anything new or outside of the “culture” you grew up with is SO hard.
    So my first suggestion is be gracious with yourself. Starting over isn’t failure, it’s just starting over.
    My second suggestion in regards to weight loss or maintenance is just don’t buy it. We don’t go down those aisles and we don’t bring it in the house. Because I have zero self control when it comes to junk food.

    PS I’m so proud of you for asking your gp for help. It’s a lot easier to live in denial or say it’s not that big of deal. So good on you!

    • I’ve got the ‘not buying it’ down pat. It’s the going out that’s the issue. Part of what I love about going out is getting food, whether it’s shopping or to a heritage site or the market, whatever, there’s no point if you’re not stopping for a snack/tea/meal somewhere. Hmmmm, yes, grace, I seem to use it all up on others and forget to save some for me. :p

  3. It’s such a cliche to say I’ve been there, done that and said that myself…but it’s true. I urge you to heed the advice of your friends and ignore the example of your mother! The grace you show yourself, will flow out to your family and friends. So let it flow like a river blessing all it touches. And your words in this blog is an instrument of grace and light and truth. Keep wiring.

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