Monday, April 11, 2011

Me First

This topic really hit home....In 2002 I was taking care of two kids, working full time, in a new relationship, going to school full time and generally driving myself into the ground.

July of that year put a stop to all of that, I got a call from the Radiologist asking if I would come back in for a "routine" re-examination of my latest mammogram.  Imagine my surprise when a month later I heard those words from my doctor "Carol, you have breast cancer."

After six months of doing exactly what the doctors said, I finally was finished, I was bald, I was still working, I was still raising a family and I was still going to school.  But in May of 2003, Steve and I decided we were done.  We retired from the rat race in the bay area, the crazy 200 miles a day drive and we moved up to Pollock Pines, we were going to enjoy our lives.

Fast forward six years and I was still not really taking care of myself and I had 85 pounds of extra weight to show for it.  Finally I decided it was time to take care of myself and move forward and I started by walking through the doors at Weight Watchers.

I know that in addition to finding time to do things for ourselves, many of us fail to understand the importance of putting weight loss as a #1 "Me First" priority. In other words, we fail time and time again because we really have not made the decision, deep down inside, to change our lifestyles for the long term and do what it takes to become healthy.

In order to put "Me First" each of us has to commit to change and reordering of our daily lives. This is hard. Doing "things" for ourselves is not enough. We have to invest the time and emotional energy to understand what true change demands, mentally and physically, and have the courage to do it.

What are some ideas on how to do this?

Here are some of my favorites ways of remembering "Me First" if you have others, let me know:
  • Go for a walk.
  • Watch a favorite movie.
  • Watch a favorite TV show.
  • Call a friend.
  • Pre-pack your snacks.
  • Try a new recipe.
  • Have a 4 points (or less) snack.
  • Buy (or pick) yourself a bunch of flowers.
  • Try a new fruit or vegetable.
  • Email a friend.
  • Read a magazine.
  • Paint your nails.
  • Look at old pictures.
  • Spend some time at a hobby or interest.
  • Change your hair.
  • Read a book.
  • Have lunch, or breakfast, or tea, with a friend.
  • Try a new exercise move.
  • Have a cup of tea and just sit quietly.
  • Go to a movie or show.
  • Listen to some uplifting music.
  • Plan a vacation (even if you can’t really take it!)
  • Window shop.
  • Hug someone.
  • Say no when asked to do something you really don’t want to do!
  • Go to your WW meeting!!!
  • Track.
  • Plan your meals for the week and shop accordingly.
  • Try a new Power Food.
  • Use some of your weekly 49!
  • Breathe.
  • Tell somebody about a goal you have achieved.
  • Stretch.
  • Go for a ride with no destination. See where you wind up!
  • Spend some time on e-tools.
  • Take a bubble bath or an extra long shower.
  • Put on some jewelry you haven’t worn in a while.
  • Have a tall cold glass of water with lemon slices.
  • Measure out your portions.
  • Smile (even if you don’t feel like it!)
  • Keep a chart of your activity. Reward yourself when you exercise 6 days out of 7 (or whatever goal you’ve set yourself).
  •  Prioritize.
  •  Play with a kid.
  •  Tell a joke.
  •  Try a new herb or spice.
  •  Delegate.
  •  Tell someone you love them.
  •  Pack your lunch.
  •  Sign up for a 5K.

We live in a society where we cheerfully hear very young children holler “Me first pleaseeeee!”, when forming teams, lines at school or staring a project. Then as they grow older they soon realize the ones who get to “go first” are usually the compliant ones who followed instructions and didn’t yell out “Me first!”! Often as we get older we are taught to think it is impolite or selfish to think of yourself “going first” in anything! Because of this many of us learned to put our jobs, families, and the needs of others before ourselves. When we do that we have very little time to truly care for ourselves as we need to. 

What could you say no to? and Who could you delegate to?
  • The neighbor/relative who asks for you to watch their kids for a bit. 
  • The volunteer work 
  • Working though your lunch 

I love this line, you may not need to say it if you would just think it to yourself to ease the guilt. 

"Lack of planning on your part, does not constitute an emergency on my part."

Tell the person you will get back to them after you check your calendar. Then take time to carefully think through this commitment.

When you learn to take care of yourself first, you’re likely to be happier, healthier, and more in control of your weight-loss progress,

Plan to be at the meeting on Thursday night, we have a special guest speaker.  Ken Press from SacFit will be talking about walking, starting an exercise program and most important taking care of yourself.  

Until Thursday,


You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.
~ Buddha

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