(Day 20) Unexpected Motivation

My small victories that I wrote about stirred a conversation with a friend about how do I celebrate these victories. I had no idea how to celebrate. My thoughts of a celebration revolve around food. When my friend asked me how I was going to celebrate my response was “well it won’t be with desserts because I am not eating sweets for 31 days”. The reality that my view of celebration was only about food really caused me to think. I don’t know how to celebrate with anything other than food. When someone gets a promotion or graduates, we go out to eat. It’s what I know. The only other thing I could think of was sending a card but I am not going to send myself a card. That would just be weird.

motivationI asked for feedback on how to celebrate in the group I am involved in on Facebook and got some great ideas that I had not considered. Buy a shirt, take a bubble bath, give yourself permission to take a nap were among the suggestions I received. As I think back to the times when I have been on this journey before I see where I did not really celebrate my victories. I mainly focused on my failures. I was a completely black or white thinker and I was either succeeding or failing, there was no in between, there was no room for the middle ground of learning opportunities. This revelation became an unexpected motivation for me.

When I think back to the time when I lost the most weight within one year I do remember getting my hair cut and colored which was a celebration of my success. However, when I veered off my path I hit a wall and would beat myself up for days on end before ever getting back up and moving forward. It was a major hindrance to my journey. When I got to the end of that year and only lost 86 pounds instead of 100 pounds I didn’t see the 86 pounds as a success but a failure. I know, it was stinking thinking. After that time of what I viewed as defeat I gave up for a long time. I had a few attempts at getting back on track but I could not give myself grace to move forward. I felt that I had let down God. I was on a journey with Jesus, that was and is my purpose for writing this blog.

I’m so thankful that my thinking is shifting and I am allowing myself grace to keep walking even when I don’t meet every goal. I re-evaluate, I change or modify my goals when I find that I am attempting to do too much at once. I listen to my accountability partner when she gives me feedback if I begin to go on a downward trail. I allow myself to learn along the way and I am not rushing into anything. It’s not about losing weight anymore. It’s about being healthy and honoring God with my body. It took years to get to the place I am today with my weight and it may take years to get to a healthy weight. In the meantime I need to truly learn how to celebrate the victories that I am seeing in my life.

Today I have a boost of motivation that I did not anticipate and it’s wonderful. It’s allowing me to grow. I have a new-found confidence that I haven’t experienced before. I am really making changes to my life and each step of the way I am inviting the Holy Spirit to teach me and guide me. I am excited for the things to come. I am motivated to continue this journey and learn to celebrate my small victories with more than just a blog post. What a blessing! Thank You Jesus!

Thank you for stopping by today.

Just another reminder before you leave, DaySpring.com is celebrating all of the amazing Write 31 Days readers who are supporting nearly 2,000 writers this October! To enter to win a $500 DaySpring shopping spree, just click on this link & follow the giveaway widget instructions. Good luck, and thanks again for reading!



Repost: Get Back Up Already!

I started reading my blogs today from the very beginning. This one from 6/22/11 hit me between the eyes. Funny how my own words have come to bite me in the butt. Well I suppose if they get me off my butt and back into action again then they have served their purpose. I’m going to repost those words here for myself and anyone else who might need a little motivation.

Get Back Up Already! written 6/22/11

For the past few weeks I had a big problem…INERTIA. What is INERTIA? A quick Google lookup will give you this definition ” A tendency to do nothing or to remain unchanged” and Dictionary.com gives this definition: “inertness, especially with regard to effort, motion, action, and the like; inactivity; sluggishness.” Okay now stay with me here, I have been pondering this word INERTIA for a little while now and how it relates to my lack of exercise over the past few weeks.

Did you see the definitions? I see a lot of insight in this word. First I see that having this problem is keeping me at a stand still and unchanged. Then looking further we see inactivity and sluggishness, um that sounds like lazy to me! So let’s see what the Bible says about being lazy?… Proverbs 26:15 – “A sluggard buries his hand in the dish; he is too lazy to bring it back to his mouth.” Ouch, I would say that is lazy! So if a sluggard is the one who is lazy then what does the Bible say about a sluggard?…Proverbs 6:9 – “How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep?” I’m thinking this is not a good thing! So then I looked up one more definition and this is what Merriam Webster says, “a property of matter by which it remains at rest or in uniform motion in the same straight line unless acted upon by some external force. ”

Hmm, so that got me to thinking a little more and this is what I decided about myself, I am remaining still at rest and not moving my body on a daily basis which will leave me unchanged and could turn me into a sluggard so I need an external force to get me moving. Well I certainly don’t want that because I’ve been there, done that before and that’s why I am not at a healthy weight today. So I went through a time of thinking about this situation and I kept telling myself that I needed to get back into my exercise routine. Every morning I would plan it in my head and then I would go to work and come home and realize I had done nothing. That went on for a while and in my head I had great intentions. I would plan it out well as to the time of my workout and what I would do and everything. But alas, nothing. Each day I would come home and be too tired to do anything after working all day. Well to add to my problem, my weight started creeping back up because in the midst of my non-activity I was also making some very unwise food decisions.

It finally occurred to me that when you get off of a routine it is hard to get back started the longer you are off that routine. They say it takes 21 days to form a habit and I’m convinced it only takes about 3 days to lose that habit. Well I needed to get back to my routine. I was reminded of what Proverbs 24:16 a says “for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again.” I needed to rise again, I needed to get back up, I needed to find my motivation! Interestingly when I looked at the definition for motivation in the Merriam Webster Dictionary, it says “the act or process of motivating”, then the second definition says “a motivating force, stimulus, or influence”

Well that made sense to me especially in relation to the Merriam Webster definition of inertia, let’s read that definition one more time “a property of matter by which it remains at rest or in uniform motion in the same straight line unless acted upon by some external force. ” I needed motivation to be my external force but for days I was looking in the wrong place. I was thinking I could do it on my own. I was thinking that I just needed to get back up already! Well of course, I failed. I was depending on myself, my own efforts, my own motivation that was basically non existent at that point. I had used all the “stress” excuses and all the “I’ll start tomorrow, today, in an hour, next week, Monday, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera” (in the voice of Yul Brynner of course).

I had to go back to find my original motivation and here it is right here…1 Corinthians 6: 19, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you,whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” That is my motivation, that gives me my “want to”! I think I had forgotten that simple verse in the midst of the inertia and excuses. Yes it’s hard to get back up when you fall down, but it doesn’t take long to get back into a routine. It just takes having motivation and “want to”. My motivation is to honor God with my body and that is exactly what I intend to do on a daily basis. I got back started just yesterday but now that I have confessed before God and man and made the decision to “GET BACK UP ALREADY” I think I will be okay. So is there anything hindering you today from getting back up and exercising and making healthy food choices? I encourage you to find your motivation in God’s Word and let Him be your external force to get you back up again.