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My Visual Motivation and Rewards (Beads!)

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Old 10-20-2012, 12:06 PM   #1
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Lightbulb My Visual Motivation and Rewards (Beads!)

For a while now I've been thinking about putting together a bracelet or necklace with charms to represent my weight loss progress. I'd been looking at the charm bracelets at Target, but eventually decided I liked the idea of the Pandora-style bead charms like Kaplods has mentioned. I've found they have a good selection of inexpensive ones at Hobby Lobby, and I'll be checking out other craft stores as well as online.

I originally thought I'd do one for every five pounds, but have decided that one for every ten pounds makes a lot more sense in my case. I only wish I'd have thought of this idea ages ago because I've already technically earned twelve.

To ensure each of the initial twelve is special to me, I'm going to buy one at a time, take a photo of it, and write down what it represents to me and which set of ten pounds earned it. And any new ones I earn after the initial twelve will be super extra special and of course cannot be worn or even bought until I've earned them. If I gain the weight back, the corresponding bead comes back off the bracelet until I've earned it again. I might even splurge on the very last one and get something more expensive (like an official Pandora bead) when I reach my goal weight.

This is the very first bead I bought last night, which is for pounds 360 through 350:



It may be hard to see, but there's a star on the side (I love stars), and the fact that it says Wonder Woman is just empowering (I've loved her ever since I had WW Underoos). It's the perfect start for me!

Others I've got my eyes on for the initial twelve are paw prints (to represent my pups!), an owl (to remember my mother), a little black dress (to represent my progress), a lock and key (because I've found the so-called secret), a devil heart (to represent my husband), a winged heart (to represent how I met my husband), and so on. I'm still trying to figure out something to remember my dad by, maybe a word-working tool. I may head off to JoAnn Fabrics today to see what kind of selection they have.

I just know I am going to have so much fun earning and picking out beads for my bracelet, and that wearing it will be a great motivator and reminder. And I wanted to share it here in case it gives anyone else great ideas of visual motivations and rewards that will personally help them out too.
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Old 10-20-2012, 12:41 PM   #2
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What a wonderful idea ... And what better way to remember the progress you've made than to have a constant visual reminder of how strong you are and where you're at in your journey. Love it.
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Old 10-20-2012, 02:25 PM   #3
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This is such a good idea! I need some sort of visual motivation and this is truly a good reward! Congrats on your progress so far, I think you are amazing!
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Old 10-20-2012, 03:46 PM   #4
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Default Congrats

HI,
First of all what a great job at weight loss thus far. What do you do now that you have found the secret?

The idea of a bracelet is so clever. Could you give a bit more info.? What is the average price for the charms? Do you just put them on a chain bracelet or is a special type of chain needed? Will you post pics as you continue to succeed?

I am so excited to try this. I have never seen charms at our craft stores or JoAnnes either. I will check out target. Plwease advise on any tips for carrying this project through. Fabulous idea.

Good luck.

Sheridan
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Old 10-20-2012, 08:25 PM   #5
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You always have such great ideas! It's no wonder you've had such great success.
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Old 10-20-2012, 09:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan View Post
HI,
First of all what a great job at weight loss thus far. What do you do now that you have found the secret?

The idea of a bracelet is so clever. Could you give a bit more info.? What is the average price for the charms? Do you just put them on a chain bracelet or is a special type of chain needed? Will you post pics as you continue to succeed?

I am so excited to try this. I have never seen charms at our craft stores or JoAnnes either. I will check out target. Plwease advise on any tips for carrying this project through. Fabulous idea.

Good luck.

Sheridan

Had to jump in here, because I love my weight loss beads.

I've found large hole beads in many places and I rarely pay more than $1 per bead. I've found them at Michael's, JoAnn Fabrics, Hobby Lobby, Sunshine Discount Crafts (online), etsy (online) and Oriental Trading Company (online), Etsy (various sellers), and occasionally in resale and consignment shops.

I'll try to remember to photograph some of my beads (and remember where I got them and for how much), because I have two bracelets, and an assortment of beads 21 bead that I've earned (I lose so slowly that each bead represents 5 lbs lost). I also have some bead that I've bought that I haven't officially "earned" yet (so I can't wear them until I do, except for my single "inspirational bead," but the price was so good, and the colors so pretty, I couldn't pass them up).

At Hobby Lobby I found a ring that holds a single bead - I've been using that as my "inspirational bead." It's the next bead I'm trying to "earn," so I won't be able to put it on a bracelet until I reach 284 lbs. Then I can put it on the bracelet and can choose my next inspirational bead (either from my stash of unearned beads that I've purchased or a new one).

Hobby Lobby sells the beads singularly and in groups of two or three. In Michale's and JoAnn's they usually come in bundles of five or so.


The beads really are very easy to find online and in crafting shops and the prices vary from $3.50 for 5 beads (which often goes on sale for half price) at Michael's and JoAnn's, to $15 per bead or more from Target and other Department stores, to $40 and up at jewelry stores.

The most I've ever paid for a single bead was a tad over $4 (and that included shipping and handling. I bought it from an etsy seller).

Some of the online sources:


Oriental Trading company (calls them large hole beads)
http://www.orientaltrading.com/api/s...rge+hole+beads



Sunshine Discount crafts sells them under the names A Bead at a Time, and Mix and Match Jewelry
A Bead at a Time
http://www.sunshinecrafts.com/dept_v...DABATKT&Page=1


Mix and Mingle Jewelry
http://www.sunshinecrafts.com/dept_v...JWMXMNG&Page=1


http://www.orientaltrading.com/api/s...rge+hole+beads
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Old 10-20-2012, 11:54 PM   #7
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Thank you everyone! Now that I've found the "secret" I just keep just keep plugging away. I basically watch my portion sizes and write down what I eat so I can make adjustments in my diet as necessary. Lots of whole foods, occasional treats, mostly avoiding simple carbs (especially added sugar). The main thing is not giving up! I've only had one major gain in my 7-year weight loss journey and I'm doing my best to make sure it doesn't happen again.

I bought a bracelet specifically made for the Pandora-style beads at Hobby Lobby; they have to be slim enough at the end so the beads can be threaded. They had several to choose from there (from $3 to $8 if I remember right), and I see now that they also have them at Walmart (go to their website and do a search for "beads" to get an idea of what they carry)!

The beads I've seen in the various stores (either craft stores or the craft section of the store) seem to vary in price from $1 to $5 each, and they often strand themed beads together so you can buy several at once for a few dollars. It's the official Pandora ones that get expensive, from what I can tell they're $25 and up each.

I hadn't seen the rings that hold beads yet, but I have been looking at the twist key pendants. I have my eye on one that has wings. I just bought a set of metal beads with little hoops on them so you can add your own charms (a set of 5 for $3 at Walmart).

I haven't picked my next one up yet but I'm going to try to keep adding pics to this thread as my bead collection grows.
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Old 10-21-2012, 09:18 PM   #8
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I'm really looking forward to seeing all the beads you buy for this. I think it's a wonderful idea and am thinking of doing it myself - a bead for each 10 pounds lost and maybe a bead for each X period of time I keep it off. If I do that, maybe I'd do the inexpensive ones for the 90 pounds lost but splurge on a good one for each year I maintain. I'm going to think about this a bit. A bead for each month I maintain seems too much. A year seems too long to go. Maybe I'll pick special dates in the upcoming years. My birthday, major holidays associated with food, vacations, etc. If I maintain over those periods of time, I get another bead - maybe 3 or 4 a year.

Keep posting the pictures so we can follow along.

Lin

And same to Kaplods - I think it would be nice to hear about your beads, too.
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Life style change started on Jan 13, 2011. I was going to lose 100 pounds by Christmas.
I lost 93 pounds by Oct 1, 2011 and am holding there for now. We'll see what happens.
New goal: To maintain at about 160 Final Goal: To decide if I need to lose more
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Old 10-21-2012, 11:46 PM   #9
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Kaplods, would definitely love to see photos of your beads.

And Lin, I think beads to celebrate maintaining for periods of time would be a great idea! If you're afraid of it being too many, you could always do another bracelet or even a necklace separate from the one that celebrates the losses themselves. Maybe I'll even do maintenance beads myself once I get down to a healthy BMI. It's so much fun to browse the beads for ideas!

Here's my second bead, for pounds 350-340:



So technically it's a charm, but I added it to a hooped silver bead. You can also see the Pandora-compatible bangle-style bracelet that I picked up in a specialty shop today. Even though I'd already bought a chain, this was cheap ($2) and I like the weight and feel of it. I'll still hang on to the chain as it's pretty by itself.

Anyway, about the choice of the bead: I've always loved art, as I grew up in a talented family that encouraged drawing/painting/sculpting/etc. My mom often bragged that all of her kids were born with pencils in their hands. However, I lost most interest when she passed away, and really didn't get back into it again until about 7 years ago.

Coincidentally, that's also when I was at my highest weight.

I was at a pretty low place around 2004 when my dad passed away, and after about a year of grieving I decided to pick up the pencil once again. As rusty as I was with drawing, that ended up being the very first step I needed to take in order to start healing emotionally and even physically. As it helped my confidence regrow, I decided that I cared enough about my life to start taking care of myself. I worked hard at getting healthier through eating better and exercise, sometimes going at great strides, sometimes just maintaining my progress (I've only had one major backslide, which happened last winter). I used to have trouble just getting from one room to another, could barely bend to pick up something off the floor, and standing in place for more than just a few minutes at a time? Forget about it! One flight of stairs would send me into an asthma attack worthy of an ER trip. The progress has been slow and difficult, but it's so much better than the alternative of losing more and more of my physical abilities. Even though I'm not yet at my ideal weight, I no longer have problems keeping up with others while shopping or on vacation. I'm flexible enough to bend and get up and down off the floor easily. And stairs are a breeze! Had I not started on this journey, with the direction I was going I honestly believe that I'd be in a wheelchair by now. I recently learned that I had undiagnosed diabetic issues for at least ten years, but my current bloodwork indicates that my blood sugar is under control thanks to my diet.

Crazy how drawing helped me gain confidence back in other areas of my life. Digital painting and drawing has since become an amazing outlet, and is actually the reason my husband and I met; he and I first started chatting online when he liked one of the drawings I'd posted. So I felt a little painter's palette would be a great reminder of how all this ties together for me.
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Old 10-21-2012, 11:49 PM   #10
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It's beautiful! I think it is a brilliant idea and though I've never been a charm bracelet fan, I'm quite drawn to the idea, too

Keep documenting the beads so we can see what you pick!
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Old 10-22-2012, 05:12 PM   #11
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I adore this idea! Im starting one right NOW!!! lol
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Old 10-22-2012, 10:50 PM   #12
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Have fun with it TPA sun! And thank you, Taryl. Here's more . . .

Here's my third bead, for 340 thought 330:



I found the skull-shaped bail at a bead specialty shop and added a red beaded charm I found at Hobby Lobby. It feels very Día de los Muertos.

This addition is an acknowledgment of mortality: death is as natural as birth and simply a part of the life cycle; I've lost a lot of loved ones but they live on through my memories. It is also a reminder that life is short and precious, so now is the time to live and enjoy everything to its fullest.
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Last edited by Elladorine : 10-23-2012 at 12:42 AM.
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Old 10-22-2012, 11:03 PM   #13
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My fourth bead, for pounds 330 though 320:



The color's a little hard to see here, but this one is an amethyst. It not only happens to be my favorite color (purple!), but it's also my birthstone.

People used to believe shards of amethyst protected their owners from drunkenness. I very rarely drink these days, but once upon a time I was getting drunk off hard liquor on a nightly basis. This a gentle reminder that I'm stronger for having made it through those hard times and that I no longer rely on alcohol as an escape.
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Old 10-22-2012, 11:15 PM   #14
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My fifth bead, for pounds 320 through 310:



My mom loved owls. We used to have owl bookends, she'd painted some owl figurines, and I still have her vintage owl pendant that would be considered very trendy right now. It's been neat to see them make a comeback, and I think of her every time I see them popping up in new jewelry, and on shirts and purses and the like.

I added this owl charm I bought at Hobby Lobby to a hooped bead I picked up at Walmart. We lost her to cancer back in 1996; I still miss her very much and this feels like the best way to give her memory a place of honor in the bracelet.
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Old 10-22-2012, 11:34 PM   #15
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And my sixth bead, for pounds 310 through 300; I've still earned another six but those will have to wait for more shopping trips.



The winged heart symbolizes the user name I met my husband under. He's totally been my support system as well as my biggest fan. The charm is from Hobby Lobby and once again, the bead itself is from Walmart.

I'm most likely going to add some "meaningless" spacer beads to spread out pieces on the bracelet (you can also buy specific ones that will lock in place) while I work on earning the special ones. This is how it's coming together so far:



I'm anxious to get all twelve bought and in place! The spacer beads will be a help too since these things are free to slide all over the bangle. And I can't wait to earn my 13th bead; I've only got about three more pounds to go.
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★ Goal for 2013: Healthy Pregnancy, Healthy Baby REACHED 12-11-13
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Last edited by Elladorine : 10-22-2012 at 11:36 PM.
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