The Flip Side

A couple of years ago, I did an online program called Shrink Yourself that was very helpful to me. It basically helps with the why’s of emotional eating, such as why do we binge, why do we sabotage ourselves, why do we not exercise, etc, and how to overcome the answers to these questions.In this program, you answer a lot of questions and do some workbook exercises, and one of the exercises has you list all of the reasons you want to lose weight and what you would have to do to attain your goal. On the other side of the same coin, it also has you list examples of what will happen if you don’t do the things necessary to attain your goal. For example, if you eat crap all the time and never work out then you will keep buying bigger pants every year. Make sense?

My niece told me that last month she worked out on all of her planned work out days and she lost 10 pounds. She had a goal, she worked toward it, and was rewarded with a smaller tush. I was thinking about my goals list and how, if I do all the things on it, I’ll get to my goal (which also happens to be a smaller tush). Then I started to think about what would happen if I don’t do all those things – what’s the flip side of that? I thought about if for awhile and came up with a list I like to call The Flip Side:

• If I continue to eat a lot of high fat, sugary foods, I’ll continue to gain weight and will feel terrible about myself and not feel my best.
• If I don’t work out at least 4 days a week, I’ll continue to feel tired and sluggish. I won’t have the energy necessary to keep up with my active family.
• If I don’t keep up with my C25K schedule, I won’t be able to run a 5k with my friend and then I’ll feel like a failure.
• If I continue to give in to the laziness, I won’t be able to wear my skinny jeans.
• If I don’t change my habits, I’ll be stuck in this same rut that I have been in for several months now. I won’t grow as a person and I’ll become stagnant.
• If melt into the couch and watch TV every night (or sleep late in the mornings) instead of taking care of myself, my self esteem will plummet which in turn will affect how I relate to my husband and kids. My sex life will diminish because I won’t feel desirable. My kids will learn about life from TV, instead of experiencing it with me. I’ll feel ashamed when I get together with friends or go to church, so I’ll end up avoiding those activities which bring me a lot of satisfaction.

I’m not scrapping my Goals List in favor of this, but I am going to use the two together. This feels more motivating to me because I know right now how I feel, and I don’t want to keep feeling this way. It’s easy to forget how you felt several weeks ago, but it’s not so easy to forget how you feel right this second – and that’s the motivating factor. It reminds me that if I want to feel like I’m feeling right now, I need to keep doing the things that make me feel this way.

Having a goal is kind of pie-in-the-sky to me – I have a hard time visualizing it, but this, this is concrete and real. This is something I can look at and say: this is where I will be in one year if I don’t make changes. If I do make changes, I’m not sure what will happen, but if don’t, I know EXACTLY what will happen, and that scares the sh*t out of me.

9 thoughts on “The Flip Side

  1. try it again..

    great advice and great way to write it down and visualize our goals and accomplishments and our thoughts on why this or that is or isn’t working. thanks for the Shrink Yourself link too. great tools and tips and wonderful articles and blogs!

  2. Yep, that works for me, too. I am reclaiming my health after a long time of living the “flip side,” and I never want to go back there.

  3. Great post, Jill. It’s funny. I signed up for the Shink Yourself website ages ago, on your recommendation, and I get emails from them regularly. Today’s email I actually read & went to the website. I need to do that program. I age grape nuts at 1:30 a.m. last night. What the hell is wrong with me? Seriously, I’ve got issues. I need to figure it out before things get ugly.

    I once read that when you make of list like The Flip Side, your true reasons for why you want what you want shows up in the last point. So, if you list 20 things, #20 is THE reason. Look at your list. The last one is THE reason. It’s truly what it all boils down to.

    You are working through maintenance issues, Jill. It’s important stuff. You’ll get these extra pounds off. You will. Keep exploring your feelings here. Free therapy, girlfriend, pays off in spades.

    TXT me anytime. We need to start that up again. I should have texted you last night at 1:30 instead of pouring that bowl of cereal.


    1. That is so cool about the THE reason and you are right – that is the whole deal right there.

      YES! Please text me anytime!! It’s why I’m here girlfriend!! I had another friend who was a midnight eater – she would wake up in the middle of the night and eat cookies and milk. Every night. Instead of trying to break the habit, she just replaced the cookies with something less damaging, like fruit.

      I loves me some blogging therapy!

  4. I find that my goals list overwhelmed me, so I’d fail, get upset, eat, write more goals…you see the cycle. Now I’m trying to be gentler with myself and make small but permanent changes, celebrating those changes as I go. So far, I feel better. And when I feel better, I eat less.

    Good post!

  5. That list makes a lot of sense. I’m reading a book on emo eating right now that probably covers a lot of the same material. Keep up the good work!

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