Over the past few years of working in a office, with “pasty vans” and nearby greasy spoons, I have put on a bit of weight. I used to be 10.5 stone at my peak, but it slowly crept up to almost 13, which is very bad. After several minor attempts at losing weight (looking back, I don’t see why I thought they would work), I got angry at myself. Well…not angry, but “assertive”. Same energy, different use. It’s a mental process I have used on myself to try and control my emotions (I think it comes from NLP). Diagram below:
All negative energy/thoughts start in the middle and how the person chooses to use that energy dictates where it goes. Now in most people, it will flow downwards towards “D”, which is for depressive thoughts (“Why me?”, “Never ever changes” etc). In some people, they use a bit more force with their feelings and push it upwards. Since there is a barrier (the blue bit, more on that later), the energy has to go to “Ag” or aggressive thoughts (“You suck!”, “I hate this”, etc). Both of these destinations are harmful, as they hurt either the person feeling it, or directed towards another person.
But there is a different way.
The barrier is there as most people do not know how to channel their negative thoughts into positive thoughts. Believe me, it has taken me many years to get this ingrained into my personality, so don’t be dismayed if you don’t get there for a while. The positive version of these thoughts/energy is “As” or assertion (“This situation is not to my liking, I must change it”, “That was unexpected, I will adapt”, etc). This leads people to not only deal with the situation without harming them self/others, but to turn it to their advantage.
Good leaders use this all the time (knowingly or not). They assess the situation and see how they can turn it around to their benefit, rather than cry or shout at someone.
But I digress. The other week I had a moment where this above diagram popped up into my head when I was having a negative thought. I was looking in the mirror, after a heavy night of drinking, thinking to myself “I have a horrible figure, I can see why no woman would be attracted to me.” Yeah, harsh I know, but that that is what the inner voice can do. Would you ever say that to someone else? No, so don’t say it to yourself. Thankfully, my inner voice changed (makes me sound like a mentalist, but you know what I mean). This time is was “Right, I have had enough of this image of me. I am an attractive man with a lot to offer. I need to get in shape, stop drinking so much and eating bad foods, and work on being more interesting and fun to be around.”
Since that moment, I have not had any alcohol or fizzy drinks. No shop bought pizzas (I had a pizza in a restaurant at a work’s do, but that was booked in advance, didn’t drink at the meal though). No crisps. No meals bought at lunchtime (sticking to my 18p instant noodles
I have traded it in for fruit (banana and tangerines, at least 1 of each a day) muesli-like breakfast, strawberries at least once a week and plently of water (and coffee, but down to 3 cups now instead of 6). I have also joined the local gym.
I think the fruit is helping a lot, I feel smoother in myself (energy wise) and not overheating so much. My gym induction had them measure me and do my blood pressure (which is normally a bit high) and just after 1 week of the food changes and light exercise, it has already dropped a bit.
So far this week, I have been to the gym twice (on Monday I slept through my alarm…whoops) and I feel so much better in the mornings, much more awake. I didn’t want a coffee today until 10:30 (normally when I get in at 8:30, it’s the first thing I do). I also feel less bloated and pudgy than I did. The week I started I was 12.3 stone, and I am now 11.12 (less than 2 weeks of slow, healthy losing).
I decided to arrange my gym visits to be before work every day. That way it doesn’t mess up my routine after work and slowly becomes part of what I do every morning, meaning I am less likely to not go (Monday notwithstanding). I haven’t planned this weekend (that will be more flexible) but for now I think 5 times a week is more than enough.
I am not sure if I will keep with the gym in the long term (it is costing me £35 per month) but that is a small price to pay for my health. Any previous excuses I had for not going I have forgotten, as they were clearly “D” type thoughts.
I’m more of an “As” man