The voice

Do you have that voice in your head, too?

The one that says, “Why bother? You’ve never kept the weight off before? What makes you think you’re any stronger/smarter/harder working this time?” “No matter how much weight you lose, you’ll never be beautiful.” “You’re lazy. Admit it. You’re terrible at this. Just give up and get it over with.”

I certainly do, and it feels like that voice has been given a megaphone this week and it’s louder than ever. I feel adrift, alone and so discouraged. Yet, in a few brief moments when the voice decides to shut the heck up, I realize that I HAVE a plan and a support system, and my results should be all the encouragement I need.

I’ve been given all the tools I need to succeed. So why is it still so hard? The answer, according to the voice, is because I’m weak. I’m lazy, I’m unmotivated, I’m a disappointment.

I’m leaving for Florida for a week this Thursday and I’m so afraid that I’m going to screw it all up. But I’ve packed my gym shoes and workout clothes, I have plans to run with Jon’s sister, and we have not planned any of our vacation around food this time–a big feat for us. I know I can handle the wedding because I handled one during the Fittest Loser and I did great. Why won’t this voice let me be?

At least I know I’m not alone in hearing voices. Famed Women, Food and God author Geneen Roth recently wrote a column about it on Oprah.com, as well as another in Good Housekeeping. I identified with both completely.

Her advice?

The best thing I’ve discovered is to disengage from it and to be relentless about that. You need a firm, almost fierce commitment to doing this. Each time you find yourself paralyzed with judgment or shame, each time you hear that voice ranting at you, you need to stop. Stop. No matter what, you stop. Even if you feel compelled by what it is saying, even if you believe every single word, you hear the tone of voice, you notice what it does to you and you stop. You disengage, telling it that it is not your friend. You are firm with it and with your commitment to stop The Voice from taking over your life. And if you keep doing that, if you stop it every time it attacks you, you will begin feeling as if you are getting more and more of yourself back. And when you have yourself back, you can then ask what you want to do, how you want to live, what’s important to you.

It is my goal this week to remind myself every single day that I CAN do this, and I know I can, because Iย did it. I DID IT. I put in the time and the work and the 830 million meals of plain chicken, and I earned it. There’s no reason that has to stop just because the contest did. There is nothing and nobody that can stop me, except myself.

What the voice forgets is that I have one too–andย I refuse to be silenced.

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About Kristen K

My life has always been pretty darn fantastic--except for one thing: my weight. Not too long ago, I tipped the scale at 283 pounds. I'd gain some, lose some and gain some right back, and I was so frustrated. When I saw a notice for a Biggest Loser-style contest in my local paper, I applied on the spot and I felt like I won the lottery when I found out I was one of the five contestants chosen. We worked out four times a week with trainers and followed a clean eating diet, and my life completely transformed. I've lost more than 60 pounds and I'm feeling confidence for the first time in my life. I'm 29 years old with a great husband, a rewarding job, two adorable dogs and fantastic friends. Weight loss continues to be a struggle now that the contest has ended, but this time I know that I can do it and I'm fully committed. This blog has seved as an accountability tool as I journey from a happy, but fat, person to a happy and confident person. And for the first time in my life, I'm no longer putting it off until tomorrow. This time, I'm starting this minute.
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4 Responses to The voice

  1. Melissa says:

    I have her book at home – still need to read it. ๐Ÿ™‚ I hear The Voice, too – and it tends to tell me those things for everything, not just weight. I’m a bad mother because I’m weak. I’m a bad wife because I’m lazy. I’m a bad person and don’t deserve to live. I’m not quite sure how this Voice took up residence in my head, but I would sure like it gone. Like those Mucinex commercials… GET OUT!

    Thanks for being there. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Kristen K says:

    Regarding the bad person and don’t deserve to live bit: tell your voice to STHU and read Desiderata (one of my favorite poems): “You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.”

  3. Nota says:

    I’ve learned to shut my voice down pretty often with a variation on Maya Angelou’s ‘when you know better, you do better’. I think to myself all the time now about my past struggles with weight – and where did this weight issue begin – and I know it started a LONG time ago because I didn’t know ANYTHING about nutrition. Now that I know food is a lot more than ‘Yum – Good – Give me more’ and view it as fuel, I do better with it. Cheetos will NOT fuel the run I want later today, and I WANT that run.

    I also fight it by asking questions. When you start punching holes in the logic behind those statements, that voice cowers & runs. Voice: “You’ll never be beautiful, so why bother?”. Me: Define beautiful. What do you think beautiful is? Voice: “110 lbs and 5’10”.” Me” You are right that I will never be 5’10”. But a bulimia problem is not beautiful – and that’s what it would take to make me 110 lbs. I am happy right now and my smile is what makes me beautiful. Take your warped definition and move along. OR

    Voice: “You’re lazy and you’re terrible about this.” Me: “Well, I WAS lazy, but I’ve been to the gym today and I’ve done X, Y, Z this week. That’s not lazy. Stop giving me outdated information. You’re right that I’m terrible at squats – but that’s just b/c I haven’t practiced them enough. I practiced more today and I’ll be great at them before long. I don’t have to be great at it, I just have to be willing to practice – and I am, so go away.”

  4. Melissa says:

    Thanks for sending me back here! I don’t know if I ever saw your response! ๐Ÿ™‚

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