Episode 248: Allowing Healthy Behaviors to Emerge
Run time: 26:12
Filed under: Binge Eating
Learn how to stop trying so hard to change your behaviors. Instead, allow healthy behaviors to emerge organically, while you're busy enjoying the rest of your life.
On today's show learn how to stop trying so hard to change your behaviors, instead go organic. Learn how you could allow those healthy behaviors to emerge organically while you're busy enjoying yourself.
Welcome to Inside Out Weight Loss. I'm your host, Renee Stephens, and together we're accessing, and adjusting the control panel of your mind, body, spirit system bringing ease and joy to your weight loss journey, and fullness to the rest of your life. This journey isn't about food plans and calorie counts. It is about learning to love and care for you from the inside out so that it becomes natural and easy for you to be slim and healthy. Join me. As a former compulsive over-eater I've been where you've been, and I'm here to help you create exactly what you want. Now go ahead and allow yourself to become even more present with you because as you well know that's where all change occurs.
So you could simply notice your breath, follow your breath and allow it to take you down within you to the deepest level of experience of awareness, of presence that's available to you now. That's right, just taking a nice deep inhalation in your own time, and as you exhale letting it all go. Such a simple thing the breath and yet the inhalation following that down deep into your awareness, deep into your own presence and experience and on each exhalation simply having the intention to let go, to release, to relax, even more than before. It's such a simple process, always available to us, and honored through more traditions than I can count. It's a classic if ever there was one.
Now as you become more and more aware of your own experience I wonder what you find is going on in there. Now there may be at one level lots and lots of thoughts, and to do lists, and things on your mind, worries, and cares, and they're so terribly, terribly important. Oh my gosh. And I'm just asking you to notice all of that flurry of activity, all of that anxiety, all of that movement, rapid movement and just drop below that, just a little bit below, just beneath all of that stuff going on so you can take a gander at it. Have a look.
What's going on up there? Oh, yeah, lots and lots of stuff. All right. So I'm just sinking down just slightly below all of those thoughts, now there may be slower thoughts, or you might even notice as you turn your attention ever so gently to your inner experience what is that? What is your inner experience? Is it your own heartbeat? The feeling of your lungs expanding and relaxing, releasing with each breath? What is your own experience? There's what's going on in the body, and there's the presence the noticing of it.
I invite you to tune in to either level, the actual what's going on, or your own noticing of it, or both at the same time. And just settle down somewhere within all of that noticing that the deepest level of relaxation that's most likely considerably more relaxed than it was when you started. Feels so good to allow that natural process of letting go and relaxing to continue because, of course, the process of letting go because in some ways is what this podcast is all about releasing, letting go of what's no longer needed, what's no longer serving you, and if that happens to be some extra weight, some extra fat cells being stored, well, heck, we'll just let those go. Why not?
You know, live a little, just let it go. When it's no longer serving you, you will just let it go. In fact, we'll get to this a little bit more later in the podcast because that's what I wanted to talk to you about today. That letting go process when it's no longer serving you.
As you see, we do all of this stuff on what are you getting out of your extra weight, if you're new to this podcast it's a core concept. This notion that no your weight doesn't come out of nowhere, and it's not because you have a slow metabolism, or your mother's fat, and your father's fat, and your goldfish is fat, so you are, too. No, nothing to do with all of that stuff. The reason that your overweight is that in some way it's serving you. You're getting something out of it. There is a positive intention, a positive desire behind your overeating, and/or your holding on to extra weight. You're getting something good out of it, and that may be a surprise to you when you discover exactly what it is that you get out of it.
Maybe it's a feeling of safety, security, comfort, connection, hide some unpleasant feelings, some scary feelings, distraction from those feelings, so you take your mind off of it. Whatever it is you've been getting something out of the overeating, or and/or the overweight, and that's why you have it on your body if you do, if you haven't released it now because you realize that it is no longer necessary in fact.
Ah, yes, now we have been shifting our goal, our definition of success away from the number on the scale, the number of our clothing size, our belt loop, our jeans size, our whatever it is, we've been shifting our focus away from that because, in fact, when we focus single-mindedly on that goal of the number we can completely lose sight, in fact, we neglect to pay attention to what really matters and what really matters is the experience of feeling good in your body. Isn't that a funny thing to say? Who knew that it really is all about the experience of enjoying yourself as much as possible as soon as possible? In other words, now, today, you can live a naturally slender lifestyle, whatever your body looks like, you can live it right now, instantly, in this moment, maybe you already are.
I would argue that listening to this podcast means that you are in fact now, and it's just a matter of time before your body catches up. The longer and longer you spend maximizing how good you feel in your body for as long as possible, the more, the quicker, that you will, your body will look the part. You'll be living the life and soon you'll be looking the part. How cool is that? Eats, living life in misery because you feel deprived, and your so darned disciplined, and working your willpower every moment, that's the no fun route, especially because you get there, but you haven't changed the causes and so, of course, the weight comes back eventually, no fun.
What we want to do is address the causes of your weight struggle, so that you're having a good time along the way, you get there, you're still having a good time. And you stay there because it's such a good time because when you define success as a number you have a binary outcome, either you've achieved it, or not. If you've achieved it, great, let the firecrackers go off, woo-hoo, how exciting. If you haven't, oh my god how awful, misery, more and more misery.
One outcome or the other, you got it, or you don't. And nobody likes not achieving their outcome, nobody likes not being at their goal, so they feel bad during that time. And you know as well as I do what we do when we feel bad, if you've got a weight problem most likely you eat, and so, therefore, feeling bad about not achieving your goal is going to make you eat, which is going to take you further away from your goal causing you to feel even worse. Not a good program.
Low and behold we're already at time for our break and when we comeback I have a new concept I want to introduce you to, to see what you think, a new way of thinking about how those new behaviors will be happening. It's kind of free. You're listening to Inside Out Weight Loss. This is your host, Renee Stephens, and we'll be right back.
If you're new to Inside Out Weight Loss, I suggest you begin at the beginning. You'll hear my story in the prologue and learn the key steps to the program in the early episodes. You'll find a link to the archive at Inside Out Weight Loss dot com. Scroll to the bottom of the page, and click "podcasts."
We're back now. So before the break we were talking about this new concept that I've never articulated in this way before. I was being interviewed by Alan Standish of the [inaudible 00:11:53] podcast, and he and I were talking about the redo and he said "So you need to have a plan, and stick to your plan" and I said "No, no it's not quite like that. Yes, you have a plan; you rehearse it in your mind, but it's not something you need to stick to because the minute you try to stick to it you introduce the possibility of not sticking to it, which brings all of this am I going to make it or not, am I good enough, all that kind of mind trick stuff that takes us nowhere nice and fast."
So, alas, what do we do instead? We don't plan, and then follow our plan in that way, what we do is we allow our new behaviors to emerge organically, think about that, we allow them to emerge organically. You do the footwork, you prepare, it's like planting a garden I might say, you prepare the soil, you plant the seeds. Then you do not pull the shoots out of the ground or you will mess everything up and you don't check on them every other day to see how they're doing by digging into the ground. You just let them be and allow them to emerge on their own, organically, as it were.
Same thing with your behavior and this is why it's so enjoyable to shift your behavior using this program and this kind of work because it does just emerge, and then you notice a week, a month later, oh I hadn't notice it like the women the other day she said to me "I used to be crazy about chocolate chip cookies, then I listened to your guided journey, and then I noticed awhile later that I just stopped buying them, and I hadn't noticed that I stopped buying them, but, alas, they're gone, it's gone from my life, the whole thing." How sweet that is in the right kind of way.
So how can you facilitate that? Allowing your behaviors to emerge organically? Before we go to the how, I'd like you to imagine the what for a minute, just take a moment, imagine that, imagine that you are busy feeling good in your body. You're busy taking great self-care of yourself, and getting on with your life, focused on your friends, and connections, and maybe you have some work goals or projects that you are dedicated to, maybe you're even enjoying them, oh my god, enjoying your work. Enjoying your family life, enjoying your personal time, maybe you have a hobby you really like, you're busy doing all of this kind of great fun stuff.
And then, alas, you notice that you are eating better, you're exercising more regularly, you're really just done and satisfied, and you push your plate away, and you just happen to notice that because these new behaviors are just happening because there's an urge for them. There's an urge for them and you have maybe used a little bit of those… That mental magic, that mental training that we talk about which is the mental rehearsal, the movies, and the redo, and the pre-do of the past, and of the future. The redo's of the past are most effective that's why I talk about them so much, counterintuitive as it is, they work really well when you do it in the past, retroactively you change your history in your mind. So those tools work really well, so you do a bit of that to change the habit stuff, the fact that you've been doing a long time one way, so you want to program in a new behavior in your mind.
Well, the best way to do that is to rehearse it because as we know the mind does not know the difference between something vividly imagined, and actually done. So when your sub-conscious mind goes to find the most recent behavior, the most handy behavior to do in a given situation, if you have a handy mentally rehearsed behavior that you like, it is more likely that your sub-conscious mind will grab that the next available situation.
So, for example, say you get the after dinner munchies, there's food there, there was somebody on the group call from the insideoutweightloss.com group today, and her husband would sit down with potato chips in the evening. And there they were, so she'd just start chipping away at the chips, so to speak. And this wasn't helping her waistline at all, wasn't helping her feel good in her body, and enjoy her evening, and so forth, so she wanted to change that. And we're talking about how simply changing that behavior retroactively could be so effective because she said "You know, these behaviors they happen automatically, I'm not conscious before they happen, or while they happen, so how the heck am I going to change them?"
The answer is my friend is blowing in the mental rehearsal, blowing in the wind, and that is you, after the fact, rehearse the new behavior. Yes, so you imagine yourself in her case, I think she was going to imagine having a cup of tea, and then as it happens there's always deeper work to be done. The cause, the driver of that behavior was some bad feelings, some loneliness et cetera that she was feeling in the evenings, and the handy dandy chip bag was the quickest thing to drown, to bury, to stuff those feelings away.
Now we want to address the cause, there is the positive intent there, did you catch that what we started with at the beginning of the show today? The positive intention of the chip eating was to quell, to stuff, to move away from painful, hurtful feelings, so that's the positive intention. Well, thank you behavior for trying to make me feel better, and avoid some pain, thank you, thank you, thank you. That's awesome. Now we're going to help process that pain, release that pain, it's historical pain from way back when, and it's time to release it now. So we use our ERFT, we release that historical pain, then we program in the new behavior, and low and behold the new behaviors emerge organically. They just kind of start happening, and it feels so good because you're busy maximizing your enjoyment of the day.
My friend Jenna Laflom [SP] she's all about pleasurable weight loss, and we are so on the same page there because really you got to enjoy the experience of living in your body. You have to enjoy the experience of living in your body.
Another person on the call today from the Inside Out Weight Loss dot com group was saying she doesn't feel any hunger, she just doesn't. She doesn't know what hunger feels like, and it turns out that she made a conscious decision a while ago when her husband was ill to stop feeling her own body, to ignore her own needs because they weren't as important as his. So she didn't feel any hunger making it very difficult to figure out the appropriate amount to eat for your body according to your bodies signal and satiety.
So she's got to come back into her body. Once she does that she can start noticing hunger, eating when hungry which is ever so much more enjoyable than eating when stuffed, I mean not a lot of fun there, but when you eat when you have a good appetite that's why your mother, or your mother's mother or somebody's mother back in line, back In the olden days used to say, "Make sure you have a good appetite for dinner, work up a good appetite, save your appetite." That was all about being in tune with your body that folk wisdom and we comeback right there. It's actually very, very simple.
So I want you to imagine that you're busy enjoying feeling good in your body, just imagine that for a moment, you wake up in the morning, and you think "What does my body, what does my beautiful body need today?" As if it were a beloved child, I know you don't, beautiful is a bit of a stretch, I know, I know, I know, so maybe put that aside for now, we'll invite it in later. How about what about my beautiful spirit living in a body need to feel really great today? How about that, you can try that one, if it works better, or if not okay you can put the beautiful aside, just for now. But I'm telling you I want it back soon because it's the truth.
No matter what it looks like there is beauty in you, in your body, and in your spirit. So don't cross me on this one, or I'll get very grumpy, beautiful. Okay, now that we've established that, you can ask that question your body says, "Maybe some oatmeal this morning, with a bit of fresh fruit, and or maybe some eggs, or maybe a smoothie, I don't know, whatever it is," and you go, "Okay," and you have, and it's just right, you enjoy it just the right amount, you focus on the task at hand, your job, your life, whatever it might be that day, workday, weekend, and then your body starts to say "Yeah, a little hunger coming up," and you choose what's going to be, of what's available.
This doesn't mean you have to be you know, Ms. or Mr. organic gourmet chef of what's available and it may just be the best thing at the food court or whatever, right of what's available, or what will make me feel the best? The quantity that will make me feel the best, you make that choice, feel so good, maybe you overdo it, or under do it, no worries you can always re-balance later, self-correct, and so on, and then your body says, "Yeah, I'd really love to move" and so you start.
You plan when can you get some movement, well today it's a busy day, maybe I'll just take the stairs instead of the elevator, maybe you'll go for an extra walk around the block, you'll park your car that much further away, or maybe you can make it to yoga, maybe you can go for a little jog, maybe you can really do a full on workout. Whatever it is, if it's 10 minutes, if it's an hour, if it's the stairs instead of the elevator, whatever it is, it's better than nothing, so go for it.
And then you think what I really need is some sleep, sleep would feel so good, and so you imagine yourself tucking yourself into bed extra early tonight to catch up on those Zs. Feels so good to be well rested. And, of course, all the research shows frontwards, backwards, and sideways that being well rested makes you slimmer. In other words, you can literally snooze off the pounds. How cool is that?
So, alas, there you go, that's it that's the kind of experience we're talking about. Feeling good in your body, maximizing feeling good in your body, doing what's the best thing for you that's available to you in that day because we have crazy run around days, I know, but just maximizing for the day. In the short term, you do what you can today, maybe in the medium term to longer term you make some structural changes, so that you can include more exercise in your life, or more sleep in your life.
Maybe you start cycling to work, a personal favorite I must say. Maybe you make a commitment with a friend to the morning high low kick box class; I don't know, whatever it is right? You start going to the farmer's market. You start cooking up a big pot of healthy something on the weekend so you can eat it throughout the week. You know, this is what you're doing, and you know what? I'm chatting all about this, taking you on this journey, and we're way over time. So that brings us to the end of our show today. Thank you for being present.
Inside Out Weight Loss is produced by Andrew Frame of bafsoundworks.com.
This is your host, Renee Stephens, and I am on a mission to end the weight struggle, enabling you to develop and share your abundant soul's gifts. Join me as we evolve the world by evolving ourselves. Take good care.
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