Tag Archives: internal dialogue

Musings on Seeking (and Finding) More Peace and Happiness in The New Year


 

“You are only one thought away from a good feeling.”

Happiness! It’s something we all want but struggle to find.  We could be happy we tell ourselves, if only we had fewer thoughts to analyse, fewer reactions to tame and no bad habits to change. Basically we’d all like to be more in charge of our lives. Maybe then we could be truly happy.

But perhaps all of the above just kind of ‘goes with the territory’ of living? Maybe we’d better just get used to it, ‘cos perhaps it is an inevitable part of the whole ‘being human’ thing ?

A few years ago I had to ponder those questions myself and if I wanted to stay on track with my weight loss efforts, I had to get some answers. What I found was that staying healthy psychologically was a real boon to staying healthy physically. We are, after all, not one-dimensional, but multidimensional beings, with many parts to heal, restore and transform.

So today’s post is about a few of the ideas that I’ve discovered and found to be effective (for me) . I hope they are for you too.

You Can Be Happy

I’m talking here mainly about a few principles I have learnt and now practice myself and that basically all come from a little book called, YOU CAN BE HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT. Great title, huh?

The principles are simple, but once you start to practice them, they can be quite powerful. Okay so here they are briefly described.

1) Stop taking every thought seriously. I think the average human mind produces about 60,000 thoughts a day, so not every one of those thoughts is something you need to take notice of, particularly if the thoughts are negative. Instead you can simply acknowledge them, choice to regard them as temporary and move on. In other words, don’t get caught up in analysis paralysis.

2) Feelings are like thoughts. They will arise, sometimes out of nowhere it seems, but they will pass, if we allow them to, simply by giving them less of our attention. Giving  your mind’s full attention to your thoughts by ruminating over things, hanging on to regrets or ‘if only’s’, is only going to make you more frightened by your own thoughts and….lead to more bad feelings. Sometimes we just have to let things go.

The book also suggests that we view our feelings as our built-in warning system, a system that alerts you via your uneasy feelings that you are heading down the wrong track with your thinking and may need to make a slight mental adjustment or at least, to give your negative thoughts less of your attention and focus.

Stress Reduction

All sound a little hard? Then perhaps you need to become less tolerant of the stress you are under. By that I mean stop being so hard on yourself and take a break. Book a massage. A tank float. A pedicure. Whatever it is that will relax and revive you – and distract you from those continuous and annoying thoughts.

Another great tip suggested in the book is to remind yourself that your thoughts are harmless – they are just thoughts. Stop focussing on them, on each and every detail of them and you will be on the road to better psychological health and fewer destructive habits. The opposite behaviour – thinking about something all the time, which I used to do, only makes a problem grow in our minds and make it appear more formidable.

As we will all be wishing each other a Happy New Year soon, what exactly does that mean for you?

What will it take for you to be truly happy in the New Year?
I would love to hear about your own experiences with seeking happiness. Is feeling peaceful an intermittent thing for you – something that comes and goes? If so, what do you do to restore your inner calm?

We all deserve more happiness in our lives. Writing this blog makes me happy. So do my kids. So do my friends and family. And so does pursuing my goals.

What about you? What makes you happy?

 

Musings on Seeking (and Finding) More Happiness and Peace


  

“You are only one thought away from a good feeling.”

Happiness! It’s something we all want but  struggle to find.  We could be happy we tell ourselves, if only we had fewer thoughts to analyse, fewer reactions to tame and no bad habits to change. Basically we’d all like to be more in charge of our lives. Maybe then we could be truly happy.

But perhaps all of the above just kind of ‘goes with the territory’ of living? Maybe we’d better just get used to it, ‘cos perhaps it is an inevitable part of the whole ‘being human’ thing ?

A while ago in my life I had to ponder those questions myself and if I wanted to stay on track with my weight loss efforts, I had to get some answers. What I found was that staying healthy psychologically was a real boon to staying healthy physically. We are, after all, not one-dimensional, but multidimensional beings, with many parts to heal, restore and transform.

So today’s post is about a few of the ideas that I’ve discovered and found to be effective (for me) . I hope they are for you too.

You Can Be Happy

I’m talking here mainly about a few principles I have learnt and now practice myself and that basically all come from a little book called, YOU CAN BE HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT. Great title, huh?

The principles are simple, but once you start to practice them, they can be quite powerful. Okay so here they are briefly described.

1) Stop taking every thought seriously. I think the average human mind produces about 60,000 thoughts a day, so not every one of those thoughts is something you need to take notice of, particularly if the thoughts are negative. Instead you can simply acknowledge them, choice to regard them as temporary and move on. In other words, don’t get caught up in analysis paralysis.

2) Feelings are like thoughts. They will arise, sometimes out of nowhere it seems, but they will pass, if we allow them to, simply  by giving them less of our attention. Giving  your mind’s full attention to your thoughts by ruminating over things, hanging on to regrets or ‘if only’s’, is only going to make you more frightened by your own thoughts and….lead to more bad feelings. Sometimes we just have to let things go.

The book also suggests that we view our feelings as our built-in warning system, a system that alerts you via your uneasy feelings that you are heading down the wrong track with your thinking and may need to make a slight mental adjustment or at least, to give your negative thoughts less of your attention and focus.

Stress Reduction

All sound a little hard? Then perhaps you need to become less tolerant of the stress you are under. By that I mean stop being so hard on yourself and take a break. Book a massage. A tank float. A pedicure. Whatever it is that will relax and revive you – and distract you from those continuous and annoying thoughts. Another great tip suggested in the book is to remind yourself that your thoughts are harmless – they are just thoughts. Stop focussing on them, on each and every detail of them and you will be on the road to better psychological health and fewer destructive habits. The opposite behaviour – thinking about something all the time, which I used to do, only makes a problem grow in our minds and  make it appear more formidable.

We all deserve more happiness in our lives. Do you have any techniques or practices that have helped you become a more relaxed or happier person ?

I would love to hear about your own experiences with seeking happiness. Is feeling peaceful an intermittent thing for you – something that comes and goes? If so, what do you do to restore your inner calm? Is it effective? Or perhaps there is another practice or technique that you would like to share?

 

 

 

Create Your Own Fun Run: A No Fan Fare Way To Increase Your Fitness Levels


 

 

The Challenge of A Fun Run

People who run Fun Runs are super fit, right? They have reached a certain level of endurance fitness that many people wish they could also achieve. ‘I’d love to be able to do that,’ many say upon hearing of a friend or colleague who has run a 5 km event on the weekend.

I used to say that too! A couple of years ago it was one of my fitness goals – to run a 5km event. I was training regularly as I still do now – both cardio and strength workouts – and a 5 km Fun Run was a definitely on my ‘to do’ list. However, it just so happens that two of the biggest Fun Run Events here in my city are held on Mother’s and then Father’s Day – two pretty important and significant days in our family.

Despite my desire and intent, I have not run in these events (as yet). When the time came, my choice was to spend a day with my family and some quality time away from their respective busy schedules. I was always happy with the choice I made on those days.

The Me Five K Event

The funny thing is I knew I could do it. My training had been consistent and I regular jogged several kilometres in good time. So, I thought to myself, how ’bout seeing if I could just run My Own Five K Event. I could do it any day I liked. No entry forms to fill in. No special time to get to the starting line. No special arrangements to make for child care. No people to disappoint on Father’s Day.

So I did.

Slowly and methodically I increased the distance I did on the treadmill. Sometimes I would increase the incline, sometimes the distance, sometimes the pace……making each workout slightly more difficult than the last. I also bought myself a pair of new comfortable runners like Lindsey.

Me and The Treadmill

Then came race day – an arbitrary day I had picked on the calendar. I told no-one about this small marathon I was to undertake, but kept the routine at home simple and the same.

It was just me and the road, as they say.  Or in my case, me and the treadmill.

Just Doing It

As race day came closer I was just as excited as anyone else planning a 5 km event. No big fan fare, no fellow competitors to meet and greet, but the excitement level was the same.

And the outcome? I did my first every 7 kms (without stopping) on  the treadmill. Not five as I had originally intended but seven. I couldn’t believe it.

A Runner’s High

After that day, I think I truly understood the term ‘Runners High’ – the feeling being a result of increased endorphins produced by the exercise itself and also my own psychological satisfaction from having completed (and exceeded) the distance of  Fun Run Event.

So how about you? Could you plan for, train for and complete your own Fun Run Event?

Even maybe just one kilometre, say in one month from now?

Start following a good plan like my fellow healthy living blogger Jess is and you can get there. Even if it’s one k at a time!

  • Incidently, I have nothing against organised Fun Run Events. At all. I think they are great. But competing in an event is not the only way to increase your fitness levels. You can also do it your own way, in your own time and produce the same desirable outcome (an increase in fitness levels) .

Ciao friends,

Mon

Body Image Solutions Or How To Embrace True Health and Wellbeing


Accepting Ourselves and An Apology

First up, on Friday I posted what was supposed to be a bit of fun. And some of it was. Unfortunately though technology let me down. The animations didn’t work like they were supposed to. And the result? A few of the animations/pictures I posted were er….not so funny.  Sorry about that. Everything worked fine here on the site, but apparently that perfection did not transpose to the email copies sent out  to you wonderful people who subscribe. 

Needless to say, I won’t be using them again.

My apologies again to those whose copies were affected and now, on with the show…..

How Do You Feel About Your Body?

Body Image is something we are all hear about in the media, is it not?  And because of this image awareness, we are all well aware (or at least I hope we are) that the images portrayed in women’s magazines etc…are often not real (but are air brushed and technologically altered) and in many cases, not healthy.

Yet do our brains intelligently and reliably inform us of this truth? Or we still challenged by them? Maybe even threatened and discomforted by them?

From my own observations and the feedback I get, we are.

Time To Heal

So today I’d like to do what I can to help heal those feelings and encourage you to throw out some of those perjorative body labels you may have been subconsciously accepting.

Yep, throw them out – toss them out the window, dump them in the rubbish, flush them down the loo or whatever it takes to be rid of them ! You don’t need them !

The Reality

Your body is a beautiful and amazing living breathing entity.  Right now, without any conscious effort on your part, your heart goes on pumping your blood, your food goes on being digested, your hair grows and your skin repairs and renews all it’s little cuts and grazes. You are, in fact, a perfect and wonderful creation

Why not appreciate your body’s unique characteristics? Be, in awe, of it. Celebrate it. Love it.

The Truth

The comparisons we humans can make between one body and another is endless if we let it be. One person will be taller/shorter than yourself. Another more hairy. Thinner. Fatter. Older. Younger. Another has red hair/you have blond hair.

And that’s all fine. What a boring world it would be if we were all the same.

So today, right now, I’d like to encourage you to look beyond such comparisons and decide to love and appreciate ourselves (just a little bit more than usual).

Let’s decide today to celebrate our own uniqueness and individuality and love ourselves instead of constantly making reference to all that we perceive to be lacking.

Now to be clear, I’m not saying to give up on the weight loss journey. At all. Not even close. What I am saying is maybe it’s time to be  gentle with yourself. Take it easy. Breathe. Accept. And know that no matter what stage of the weight loss journey you are on; just beginning, haven’t started, half way there, you are still a beautiful human being.

A True Definition of Good Health

Good health is about more than having a great looking body. It is about nuturing and caring for your whole self – body, mind and spirit. It is about incorporating balance, moderation, peace of mind and awareness into your life. This means giving up the perjorative labels and negative talk!

Are you ready to give yourself a litte more self love today?

Weight Loss and Society: Who Has A Vested Interest In Your Progress?


 

Life As A Tug of War

Do you sometimes find yourself in a ‘them or me’ situation and don’t know what to do? Many of us do from time to time. It can be difficult sticking to decisions when you feel yourself pulled in another direction.

For example, a friend of mine recently confided that each time she decides to start a new exercise program or join a class, something bad happens to her (her words). Things like, one of her kids getting sick or a friend calling at the last minute and needing her help.

My friend had a complete list of reasons and events that had conspired to stop her from trying something new. Something which deep down she really wanted to do. So she gave up trying.

I’ll never get there, she finally concluded at the end of our conversation about people, circumstances, reasons, excuses, events, bad luck and the general negativity that surrounded her.  ‘ It could have been fun, but too many people want me to do too many things, ‘ she noted finally. I’m not sure whether she was still talking to me at this point or had begun talking to herself, but it didn’t matter. Her mind was made up.

Conflicting Goals

Funnily enough, my friend was right. She will never get there. At least not while she was continually sabotaging her own efforts by continuing to blame everything and everyone around her for her lack of action. In her defence, these events did actually occur. A close relative was ill and she had been visiting them often.

Kids also do need their mothers and friends do need a listening ear. However when we find ourselves keeping busy by being all things to all people, I think it’s time to stop, take a deep breath and reflect a little.

What We Believe

In contrast to what we are sometimes tempted to believe (that nobody really supports or helps us and everybody is conspiring against us) I actually choose to believe the opposite – that inherently other people are good and  that they really do want to see our lives work out for the best. Yes, they may have needs of their own but primarily, they also want the best for us and would love for nothing more than the chance to see us achieve what we set out to.

I guess what I am trying to say is that where my friend sees a contrast between what other people want from her (and is frightened of disappointing them) and what she wants (and is less worried about disappointing herself), I see no such contrast.

A Torch In The Dark

In my view, we  are all in this together.  Yes, we all need the support of friends, loved ones, family and sometimes from distant weight loss bloggers! As actress Whoopi Goldberg has said, “We’re here for a reason. I believe a bit of the reason is to throw little torches out to lead people through the dark.” 

My sentiments exactly, Whoopi.

However it doesn’t have to be a tug of war between ‘us’ and ‘them’.  Imagine how you would feel tomorrow if you stopped making the needs and wants of others an excuse for not doing things.  Picture yourself going to the things you want to – those workshops, those classes, a run/walk in the late afternoons or whatever it is you want to achieve and then imagine bringing all the fun and excitement back to those loved ones who you thought were stopping you.

It’s our choice: we can keep blaming others, society, our friends and family or we can understand that everyone has a vested interest in our progress, because we are all in this together.  It’s not you against the world, it’s you against you.

We care about your progress. Do you?

love,

Mon

PS  If the above post leaves you feeling a little bit uncomfortable or annoyed, that is a good sign!  I only ever made big changes to my lifestyle and habits when I got uncomfortable and also altered my beliefs, attitudes and habitual thoughts.

PPS  Hope you can join us in a couple of days, for Fun Friday. We will lighten the mood and get ready for a great weekend 🙂 See you then 🙂

Avoiding The Weight Loss Blowout: How To Control Your Diet Choices and Stay Sane!


The Weight Loss Blowout

Okay so we’ve sworn off pizza for life, we don’t eat this and we don’t eat that….because we are trying to lose weight. Everybody knows that – our friends, our spouse, our workmates and so everybody should be doing their best to support us with our new resolution to eat healthy. Only they don’t.

Contrary to our own expectations, other people don’t always make things easy for us. In addition, certain events also come along to conspire against us.  The get together, the dinner party, the going away for someone at work party…..the list goes on. And for the person that is trying to follow a new and sensible eating plan, these events can sometimes be quite challenging. Often the very foods we have been succesfully avoiding for weeks or months suddenly make a BIG comeback  poking their sticky, gooey, sweet and calorific face in ours, tempting and begging us to eat them.

Impulsive Eating

Once upon a time, I would have had a lot of trouble at such food laden events. I would have eaten way too much and then gone home feeling pretty annoyed and regretful. These days though I like to employ a few strategies to help me through these unavoidable occasions. 

A Few Strategies

There is no doubt that when you’re in your own home or your own enviroment, self control is well, easier to control.   At home, once you’ve made up your mind to, you can clean out the pantry and get rid of the danger foods (you know the ones) that tempt you the most. This idea works because basically you can’t eat what isn’t there. 

Not so however, when you venture out.  This is when a little forward planning and mental preparation can make all the difference. 

First, take time to visualise the event you will be attending. Picture the people, the meal and see yourself standing or sitting there amidst it all.  See the tempting food.   Then, take time to decide there and then what (and how much) you will eat. Picture it on your plate. Smaller portions, healthy choices. Nothing more.

If a picture of a huge dessert or extra serves of a favourite food come into play while your doing this little mental exercise, try the following. Whilst still visualising the food, make a mental image of yourself shaking your head and saying no thanks. Yes, it’s simple. But it’s powerful and it works.

Repeat the visulisation as many times as you feel the need and then, when the event happens, your subconscious will already be programmed for better choices.

What Else?

Another trick is to pack your own healthy snacks and take them with you to the party or get together. If it is not a sit down meal with a set menu, but rather a table full of random food items, then having a healthy and prepared snack as a substitute, can be a life saver.

Lastly, never leave the house ravevously hungry!!  Always ensure you have had a filling (but calorie controlled) snack before going out.  Oh and don’t forget your water habit which I talked about a few posts ago. If you missed it and would like to have a read then, check it out here https://monsbiz.wordpress.com/2010/05/25/can-you-burn-fat-with-food/ 

The Last Bit

So dear friends….we all need to think ahead with our food choices when we are on a weight loss journey, especially when the amount and type of food presented is (seemingly) out of our control.  Don’t let the circumstance dictate your behaviour, but rather decide on your behaviour before the circumstance arrives.  It is possible to achieve. Why not try it next time such a time arrives for you? You may actually surprise yourself with just how well you can control your choices.

Hope these ideas are of help to you.  They certainly have worked for me! 

I would love to hear about any issues you may have encountered in trying to control your food choices. Do you find other people supportive or do you sometimes feel that others may be trying to sabotage your efforts? You’re not alone on your journey, you know.  Many of us have been through the same things, so feel free to talk or if you’re not comfortable with that, why not just say hi! 

Thanks for reading and thanks for being part of the Reframe Weightloss team.

Ciao everyone…..

Mon ( )

Weight Loss and Positive Change – Losing Weight By Losing The Negative Mindset


Avoiding Weight Loss

Most of us avoid change.  It’s kind of part of the whole “being human” thing.  Instead of doing things differently, we seek familarity. Instead of discovering new ways, we fall back on old ways. Instead of a little bit of pain and discomfort, we seek the comfort and safety of sameness. 

If we are in a good place and life is just as we want it to be then that is great.  No need to change what is already working.  If that is YOU, then there’s possibly no need to read any further !  I’m glad you dropped by, though !

If however, you are like the multitudes of people that do desire real change but are a little afraid or unsure if you should ‘go for it’, then perhaps the rest of this post may help.

First of all let’s take a look at the things we all often do instead of taking the steps to improve/change our situation, that is some of the common ways of wasting our emotional energy.

Despite it’s futility we all sometimes blame things or people (our jobs, our past, our parents, our friends and even our families) for the things that we want to change, but never get around to.  I used to do it all the time. Had a Masters Degree in Blaming Others and often put it to use. Eventually though I saw the futility of using my emotional energy this way.  Slowly I began to take personal responsibility for the things I wanted to change.

Where To Start

Althought medical authorities, dieticians and nutritionists will all emphasize dietary and lifestyle change as the place to start, I always find it more effective to first take a look at the state of  our minds and hearts, as this is the place where real change originates from. 

Creating negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself can slowly diminish that very important part of all of human beings, our self worth.  At this point, changing diets or lifestyle becomes extremely difficult to implement.

Many well known weight loss programs do not address this crucial part of achieving weight loss. 

So to get yourself started on the road to greater physical and emotional health, why not take some time to review the following ideas for implementing positve change to your world.

Powerful and Positive Messages

Affirmations are a great way to change a negative mindset. Some methods posited include standing in front of a mirror and addressing your subconscious with powerful, positive messages.  It may seem strange at first and it is really not neccessary to do it in front of a mirror, if that makes you uncomfortable.

Repeated affirmations like “I feel good today” or instead of “I ate a whole block of chocolate today, what a hope have I got for change”, try “I may have overeaten today, but I am still a worthy, lovable and creative person” or “I am working toward change and I congratulate myself for my new awareness.  I am on the path to positive change.”

Why not try this new practice for yourself ?

Taking Control of Your Thoughts – A New Approach

This type of thinking is sometimes rejected by people who have come to believe that taking control of your internal voice is all mumbo jumbo. Many of us (most) were never taught “how to think” in our formal eduction and schooling (where many beliefs are formed) but, society is changing.

Many schools and mainstream educators are now starting to realise the value of learning to think more positively and are extending that awareness in formal education programs. I know a lot of us missed out on having these valuable insights passed down to us, but it’s not too late to try it now!

Why not have an open mind and give it a go? Let me know what happens!

I will leave you with these few further thoughts for your reflection. I think they are kind of relevant to what we are exploring here.

What you think, you create.

What you feel you attract.

What you imagine, you become.

Ciao friends.  Have an awesome day!

Mon