The Fitness Herald

Unfinished Business 

I ended the last post by saying if our actions got us where we are, then by our actions we can get out of where we are in terms of our personal fitness.

So how do we do that and where do we begin?

First, since most of what we are doing from a mechanical standpoint isn’t working we should ask ourselves why?

 Why did my last diet fail? Why did my last fitness program fail? Or was it me that failed? Or both?

So what really happened?

What happens many times is that we attempt to apply the topical ointment of behavior modification to a situation that goes far beyond the surface.

The answer to our failures may not be in the next or latest diet or program. It may not even be our fault!

The answer isn’t always obvious or visible. Events that took place in our lives sometimes long ago that have never been resolved can be the real culprits. These are The Unresolved Issues.

Very often hidden within these events is an unbearable pain that we would all rather not face.

The pain comes from the event and the conclusions that we made at the time of the event, and hardly ever are these conclusions accurate. As a result within that memory resides more anguish than we can handle.

So what do we do with that pain and anguish? We do the thing that comes most natural to us- we create solutions. And that’s when something bad gets worse.

How did I come to know these things?

I have, for over 10 years been a member of an international effort that has been extremely successful in helping others resolve Unresolved Issues and the destructive pain contained within those memories. This model allows the individual to break these destructive or unwanted cycles without behavior modification efforts or discipline. Essentially it is called “maintenance free.” Once the cycle is broken, extra effort is not required. Once the source of pain is resolved, there is then no longer any reason to apply the “solution.”

We have come to know that the real problems are hardly ever on the surface nor are they the person who is standing in front of us who just “pushed all the wrong buttons”.

(Chances are what really happened was they may have been a “Triggering” mechanism that connected you with a painful event of your past because it looked, felt, smelled, like or enough similar to that event.)

 The casual observer might come to that conclusion, but we “Facilitators” have learned that the real answer is much further beneath the surface.

 So how do bad things become worse?

It’s how we treat wounds and pain. An emotional wound is what happens when we are hurt, it could be self-inflicted or it can be inflicted by others. Where the wound occurs is in the memory of an event, and in that memory there is usually some type of emotional or mental pain. These things happen in life, some are intentional while others are not.  And to a greater or lesser degree we all seem to have them.

But we usually don’t know what to do about them, so to treat our pain we devise “solutions”.

Since we don’t know what is at work, and because the pain is uncomfortable we self-medicate.

 What does that look like? Most of us don’t recognize what we are doing on a conscious level. We seek comfort from our mental and emotional pain by using things that will not give us a permanent cure.

We use work, sex, gambling, alcohol, drugs, and porn, anything that will offer some type of ease or pleasure. It is at this point that what was already an issue has now become compounded with another layer. Whether we realize it or not this means of ease or pleasure has now become our chosen solution to our sometimes-unbearable pain.

This is what our Unfinished Business looks like, an Unresolved Issue compounded by a habit or substance that “makes us feel better”.

Here’s a typical snap shot of what Unfinished Business looks like:

When Joe was 12 years old he had to spend several months with his uncle, who never had any children and his way of correction was to verbally embarrass him, thinking that this would cause him to change his behavior. “I don’t guess you will ever amount to anything, will you Joe- you just keep messing up don’t you?” would be the words that would echo in Joe’s mind throughout his childhood and far into his adult life. A traumatic event or abuse could also cause an emotional wound.

You can now easily see that if a historic (something in your past) wound of self worth was inflicted by a parent or authority figure was not resolved, not only would you potentially become an overachiever but you would also have to deal with your chosen solution to your pain which in this case for example, would be food.

 Why would you potentially become an over-achiever? You might spend a good part of your life trying to prove uncle wrong. Ask me how I know. The answer is hidden in the statement!

So you use food to medicate the pain. And you find that on some level it “works”, for a moment you do “feel better”. That becomes “confirmation” that it’s the right thing to do!

Is that true? No, one lie layers another and we believe them all because of the “evidence” of feeling better.

At some point your “solution” back fires and body fat begins to appear. And as time passes more and more body fat accumulates.

Diets don’t have a chance to work because food has become your solution to pain. You will always go back to your solution if the source of it is unresolved. As soon as some type of mental or emotional pain occurs. It becomes a subconscious inner drive or compulsion.

But by this time things have become somewhat convoluted in the mind because using food is an accepted part of your reality.

And this is what happens, when someone says you need to stop (drinking, eating so much etc) its hurting you.

You know what we hear? This is what we hear at this point, “you need to abandon your solution for pain”. Are we ready to do that?  Hardly ever. On a conscious level we are in agreement. “I need to stay with my diet or discipline”. But on a subconscious level we will at some point sabotage our own efforts because the pattern is in place for a reason. Does any of this sound familiar?

So in this case is food the real problem?  Is weight the problem? Is being undisciplined the problem?

Oprah seems to think so.

 After all these years, Oprah says she can’t believe she’s still discussing this topic. “With all the other things that I know how to do and all the other things that I’m so great at and all the other accomplishments, I can’t believe I’m still talking about weight,” she says.  http://www.oprah.com/slideshow/oprahshow/20081030_tows_bobgreene/2

 Even Oprah has experienced this cycle. Apply a discipline to a “problem,” have “success” for a season, only to find the “problem” showing up again, then redoubling your efforts or trying something different, having another season of “success”, only to find the “problem” never really left! The hard to face truth is you yourself are actually sabotaging your own efforts! There is no book, no program that has seems to have long term success.

We are still talking about it many years down the road because we haven’t found the real cure! Discipline may work for a season, but it doesn’t keep working! It doesn’t bring a permanent solution. It works temporarily. But we look at the “failure” and conclude that “I’m just not disciplined enough” or “I just can’t resist temptation” or, “I need to try harder, or a different program.”

How can we abandon what we at a subconscious level have chosen as our “solution?”

Weight gain is only a symptom, and a symptom should point to the existence of a real problem or disease. But that’s not how most of us see it. For the most part we treat symptoms as though they are the problem. We learned that from the medical community

And food is innocent but in this case it’s been chosen as the solution to pain.

I think more often than not this is a case of Unfinished Business.

Is this always the case? No there are other reasons, some are chemical, some are metabolic, many are caused by medication, some are known and others are unknown.

I’m merely offering a valid perspective that should get as much airtime as those that are not working.

If we get rid of the cause- the symptoms disappear! There will be no further need to try harder!

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The Fitness Herald

Stay tuned.   I  will be continuing  with Hidden Truths. The next Post will focus on Unfinished Business. It could be the real reason we struggle with what we eat and drink (diet).   Some will find it informative, some will find it controversial, You won’t want to miss this one.

The Fitness Herald

Hidden Truths

 I think one of the most profound truths that we all need to ponder is what the truth is from a much higher perspective, when it comes to obesity and weight loss.

 

We have offered many different ways to approach obesity.

 

1. Research tells us that it is extremely dangerous, more dangerous than smoking and drinking combined! And it sets in motion an incredible number of other illnesses that are directly associated

with being overweight.

 

2. We all seem to know the inherent draw backs of being fat, how difficult it is to physically function, the “side effects” of obesity, shortness of breath, lack of flexibility and range of motion.

 

3. It doesn’t even look good,  it assaults our senses, it is extremely unattractive and repulsive, still we humans are not getting the message and overlook its glaring presence.

 

4. Non of these facts seem to get our attention enough to move this American society to where we have sufficient motivation to take the necessary action and no longer have this epidemic.

 

5. Oprah has put to rest the notion of “If Only”. If only I had more money, If only I were more  popular, if only people loved me. All of that has now been exposed as the lie it is and always was.

 

So where does this leave us? Modern Technology has helped us to kick away the “props”, dispel the lies, and if we care to look we are left with the truth. And the truth is that How ever we look

there is usually a lifestyle that supports that appearance. Hide it though we may.

 

That said,we are left with the reality that as a human race we have not mastered appetite, we have not mastered discipline, and we have not mastered our own flesh which houses the soul. Rather it has mastered us and the evidence is so visible it has reached epidemic proportions.

 

I believe this is the truth that we have hidden from ourselves. Hidden because it would be painful to

face this truth rather than continue to look elsewhere to determine what or whom is responsible.

The answer is not “out there” it never was.

 

It is painful to finally realize that I, as an obese person have made large contributions to my own dilemma. No one else. But the good news is that if I can get myself into this, I can get myself out of

this situation as well.

 

Oprah says money, fame and success don’t mean anything if you can’t control your own being. “It doesn’t mean anything if you can’t fit into your clothes,” she says. “It means the fat won. It means you didn’t win. … I am mad at myself. I am embarrassed.”

The truth is fat is not a foe, fat is the end result of a lifestyle. While it is true that Oprah does have a thyroid problem, her thinking that fat won is giving fat an identity. Fat does not win or lose, it shows up when we eat more calories than we burn.

Once we accept the responsibility of our actions, we can take the appropriate action to correct what has been set in motion.