Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

No Snacks, no sweets, no seconds. Except on Days that start with S. Too simple for you? Simple is why it works. Look here for questions, introductions, support, success stories.

Moderators: Soprano, automatedeating

Post Reply
User avatar
liveitup
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:17 am
Location: California

Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by liveitup » Sat Jun 20, 2020 6:15 am

For years I have continued to struggle with NoS. I might have a reasonable breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I don't even feel deprived, and I might even be stuffed after dinner. I think "nice, great job, you stopped, and that was easy even". You know, things are going as planned.

Now, there is a table full of dishes and a dirty kitchen, Despite being tired, the mess compels me to act. Then, I start thinking with a completely different value system and perspective on life, and I feel like a different person. This person is excitable, easily distracted, and maybe anxious, but certainly neurotic. Oh, I'll just have one scoop of ice cream before I really start cleaning up. It's vegan and probably less bad than real ice cream, (emphasis on probably). Oh, this isn't enough for lunch tomorrow, and won't go with any other leftovers anyway, so I'll just eat it. Oh, what a shame to compost this food, I'll just eat it, we paid for it right? Oh, the kids didn't finish their sandwich, and it's the last of the good bread, how can I throw that out? It's too good, I'll just eat it. Then, as soon as this came, I'm back to being myself, the only difference is that now I'm worse off than I was before. Had I been able to overcome this voice, I would have come out better.

It's as if I have these alternating ideals, at first coming from my own real need, something that I know will pay off for me in the long run, (eating less than I do now), and a whole bunch of random external ideals triggering after dinner that justify bad habits. They evidently are not doing me any favors and are actively harming me in the long term. These are "good foods vs bad foods", (a pint of vegan ice cream is far worse than none at all, so that was a total nonsense justification), something about foods needing to "go" together (who the heck made up that rule and why do I follow it?), or not "wasting money" (it's a sunk cost, Mr. Critical Thinker), or not wasting a well made food, (I know darn well that eating food when I'm not hungry regardless of how the heck it was made doesn't prevent it from being wasted). I'm justifying my bad habits, and poorly even, (but that's not stopping me, apparently).

I know when I feel best, because I've been there, recently in fact. It's no secret. It's simply 25 pounds less than what I weigh now. Two years ago, my heartburn was gone, my blood pressure dropped to normal, and I'll bet that my glucose level was in check (I didn't have it measured unfortunately, but I do check my BP at home at least). What changed? I got there by doing a program that required me to constantly check in with my own hunger levels. It had dozens of simply put, but very conscious-laden rules. It worked at first, but after burning out on it, and putting up with the expense of a highly conscious, overly mindful, highly regimented and frequently inflexible eating habit, I returned myself those minor health problems in exchange for some conscious freedom. I've rebelled too much against this side of me and I'm paying the price for it now.

I want to be back in my healthy zone, this time using on NoS principles, where I don't rely on constant conscious effort and tiresome self check-ins, and instead my health is reinforced by autopilot and certainty. I read the other recent threads in this forum about how long it takes to get to autopilot, and there are some incredibly insightful responses that I have taken to heart. I will read and re-read them time and time again. However, I suspect there are others like me that find it incredibly hard to start for any significant length of time, or even day-to-day, before I can just stick with it for 21 days in the first place.

What can I do to keep my personal needs prioritized over these powerful, external ideals I've learned over the years that I use to sabotage my own goals, justifying bad habits under a pretense? Or, to paraphrase the words of Oohlala in the other thread, how can "hating the bingeing become more powerful than the indulgence"?

Best,

liveitup

automatedeating
Posts: 4994
Joined: Sat Aug 31, 2013 2:16 pm

Re: Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by automatedeating » Sat Jun 20, 2020 3:26 pm

Thanks for sharing this!

I first want to address the issue that any of us have to worry about our weight and our eating. If we had lived even just 150 years ago, this was just NOT. A. THING. The rise of refrigeration, refined carbs, and refined vegetable oils in our food supply brought processed foods of all manner to our doors. Can you imagine 150 years ago people talking about which foods are best to eat? They just ate what was available. Whatever looked like real food. What they could grow and eat (and wasn't poisonous - they were good at that, right?), what they could raise and slaughter (hopefully with gratitude and humane techniques), and what they could buy/trade from their neighbors. There was not the glut of choice that we have today.

I say all of this not to get us off the hook, but to remind us that it is the food environment we live in that makes this an issue at all. Liveitup, if you were put into a pre-industrial society anywhere in the world for a year, you would lose that 25 pounds without one iota of willpower required.

I also want to point out that those of us on this forum all all genetically unable to eat processed foods in our environment without gaining weight. Many people can do it and never gain weight (although they might suffer from other diseases of civilization that don't show up as overweight); the rest of us have become overweight in the past 100 years. More of us are overweight than not. And something like only 12% of Americans are metabolically healthy (this means many normal weight individuals still have health issues caused by these processed foods). This is not because humans have changed in 150 years; our food environment has changed.

It's strange and difficult for humans to not go along with their "tribe" - and swearing off processed foods forever would require living a very "swim upstream" lifestyle. It's still the approach I'm now aiming for, but I am eccentric, and I understand that for most people, it's just too alienating from social supports to live that way.
Month/Year-BMI
8/13-26.3
8/14-24.5
5/15-26.2
1/16-26.9; 9/16-25.6
8/17-25.8; 11/17-26.9
3/18-25.6; 8/18-24.5; 10/18-23.8;
3/19-22.1; 10/19-21.8
6/20-22.5; 7/20-23.0; 9/20-23.6

User avatar
liveitup
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:17 am
Location: California

Re: Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by liveitup » Sun Jun 21, 2020 2:33 am

Thank you for the thoughtful response, Auto.

Doesn't extremely fast environmental change around our extremely slowly changing species make you think about, well, literally anything that is rapidly changing around us and how it might affect us? On one hand, we've gotten much taller in the last several hundred years because of increased nutrition and healthier lifestyles. Maybe that's not so bad, but processed food certainly is wreaking havoc. We have existed as homo sapiens for 200,000 years, but the last couple centuries have seen unprecedented change.

Your post reminds me that NoS is naturally extremely good at addressing processed sugar, and it reminds me of why I need to continue to make a serious effort to dial it in.

oolala53
Posts: 9782
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:46 am
Location: San Diego, CA USA

Re: Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by oolala53 » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:19 am

If I may say, I detect a bit of a problem in how hard it sounds like it was to get to 25 lbs. down. Would you be willing to compromise on the amount of loss for more ease?

Before I offer to inundate you with a set of steps way more fussy (in terms of thinking) than No S, have you ever actually just implemented Habitcal? or something similar?
Count plates, not calories. 10 years "during"
Age 67
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
1/12-26.8
3/13-24.9 +/- 8-lb. 3 yrs
9/17 22.8 (but more fluctuation)
3/18 22.2
2 yrs flux
6/21 22

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.

User avatar
liveitup
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:17 am
Location: California

Re: Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by liveitup » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:42 pm

Thank you Oolala.
I detect a bit of a problem in how hard it sounds like it was to get to 25 lbs. down.
It wasn't hard to get there necessarily, but boy did it suddenly became taxing. It's like the light suddenly switched off. The method wasn't NoS. It was a highly conscious program that required minimum amounts of time to eat meals, strict eating rules to encourage mindful eating, mealtimes that were rarely in line with standard mealtimes, and copious amounts of very low sugar liquid to regulate blood sugar. It's a non-diet that created a diet mindset. It resulted in very fast weight loss. I lost 3-4lbs a week and ate two small meals a day. At first, it was almost a miracle. Then, I suddenly hated all the liquid and the conscious effort, and it turned from excitement into a punishment. It was classic burn out.
Would you be willing to compromise on the amount of loss for more ease?
I'm fully ready to compromise on how long it takes me to get there, and if my physical symptoms of being overweight are gone, the point you're making is that the weight doesn't matter. So, yes.
Have you ever actually just implemented Habitcal? or something similar?
Yes, and thank you for the reminder. I've started tracking progress again now. I also use the daily check-ins occasionally. I love the posts in our check-in forum from people who have found success and continue to post anyway. I would love to see more people do this!

jenji
Posts: 632
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2017 5:00 pm
Location: Cambridge

Re: Another perspective: Keeping yourself a priority

Post by jenji » Thu Jun 25, 2020 11:58 am

If after dinner is your danger time, is there any way to reframe that? I am picturing that clean-up is done with someone else, or clean-up involves dance music, or you brush your teeth and put your retainer in... something to make it no longer seem that eating the leftovers is the easiest thing to do. Even if you can get your family to do their own compost (this is still a work in progress in my house). If you can, ask someone else in the family to put the leftovers away, too.

One thing I started with No S that helped keep me honest is just boxing up/wrapping uneaten plates that my kid didn't touch. I might have it for breakfast the next day, and that solves my inner voice saying "that's good food". If something is really good, I sometimes even put half of a sandwich in the fridge, too.
I'm a 49-year-old mom and non-profit CEO
I am 5' 7.5"
Began No S at 184#, BMI 28.4 - 9/25/2017
Current weight 173#, BMI 26.7 - 09/05/2019

Post Reply