The liklihood of gaining back at least half of the weight lost during a "boot camp" or intense physical fitness/diet program is 90%! This is because real life doesn't operate within the confines of a bubble. There is no coach whispering in our ears as we return to life post-bootcamp. THIS is the time to really take a look at the 80/20 lifestyle as you make the transition back to your reality. It is very very easy to set unrealistic expectations on ourselves. It is very very easy to convince ourselves that forces outside of ourselves are IN control.
Good questions to be asking yourself include: how am I going to set myself up for a self-care lifestyle? Who will need to be involved? What obstacles are expected? What are my triggers? How will I intercept negative thinking and negative feeling before it becomes negative behavior? What are my resources?
I think self-compassion means realistic expectations and an acceptance of imperfection. We do this very silly thing here in America, where we convince ourselves and one another that perfection is attainable and not only is it expected but it's the ONLY way to "happiness". Whoa! No wonder we spend so much time and money and energy trying to "improve" ourselves and so little time trying to accept and care for and live in the present with ourselves and our families! I'm going to say something totally revolutionary now: HAPPINESS IS A TRAP!
"Happy" is one of the maaaaany emotions we have as human beings. It is a fleeting emotion just like all the rest and yet we treat it as though it is the ONLY emotion that matters, that we should be feeling. And then we set about on this journey to secure "happiness" and we look at ourselves and others as less than, missing something, void, if we are anything less than "happy". Guess what? Life, and all of the other extraordinary parts of you which include disgust, anger, hurt, bittersweetness, peaceful, humbled, alarmed, frustrated, confused are happening and existing while you pursue your "happiness". Chances are if you are dismissing these parts of yourself, you are dismissing them in others around you, including your spouse and children. Pretty soon we feel beaten down, like failures, because we spent so much of our lives trying to attain something that was never attainable to begin with! We feel resentful, hopeless and regretful and often don't understand why or where those feelings come from.
START NOW. Look at all of you. Allow acceptance in, little by little, day by day. When we stop pushing away as much, we find ourselves feeling "fuller" and more whole and there is less need for anything outside of ourselves, be it food, alcohol, clothes, money to do the filling for us. We begin to make choices about what we do, how we do it and with whom from a place of rationality, from a place of self-love and self-compassion and suddenly, for the first time, we find ourselves in a place where our relationship with exercise, diet is less about "fixing" what is wrong with us and more about giving to ourselves because we care about our own well being, about our relationship with ourselves, about our inner dialogue and how that transcends into how we see other people, how we treat them and whether or not we make short sighted, impulsive judgments.
Thoughts and emotions and relationships matter. How you see yourself matters. These are not separate from how you feel and look physically. Mind and body are one. It's time we treat them as such.
Be curious. Be brave. Be you.~ Julia