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Old 08-10-2012, 12:28 PM   #9
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kaplods's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Wausau, WI
Posts: 13,383

S/C/G: SW:394/310/180

Height: 5'6"


I've felt that way many times, but I really believe that whether helping ourselves or helping others, compassion wins out over anger every time.

It's extremely difficult, almost impossible to truly help (and even harder to want to help) someone we're angry with, whether we're trying to help ourselves or others.

There's plenty of "blame" to go around when it comes to obesity. As a society and as an individual, we didn't get into this mess alone, and we're not going to get out of it that way either. We're taught (by the examples we've been given) many of the habits that got us here, but we're also taught that it's ALL our fault, and that we SHOULD be able to fix the proble without any help from others (in fact, needing help is often still seen as shameful).

One of the messages we're also given by society is that we're SUPPOSED to be angry at ourselves in order to change (the drill seargeant mentality), but research bears out the fact that anger doesn't help (even the military has changed the way actual drill seargeants behave), but when it comes to weight loss we still believe that yelling hurtful things at people helps them.

For most people, it doesn't work that way, at least not in the long term. Which means that for many, perhaps even most of us we can have anger or we can have success. I choose success.

Most of my life, I tried to power weight loss with anger. Anger at myself for getting fat, anger at others for being cruel to me for my fat... but anger is a fuel that burns out quickly. And when the anger is gone, or even just weakened, so is the motivation. And often even if the anger doesn't weaken, the motivation still does, because of the fact that it's hard to sustain motivation when helping someone we're angry with. "Why should I bother?" we ask ourselves.

This time has been different. I've forgiven myself and others, and I've decided that I am worth the effort, and that being thinner and healthier isn't about punishing the fat me, it's about rewarding the current me. Doing the best I can for the person I am now. And "pampering myself thin," has been far more successful than trying to punish myself thin ever was.

If we don't let go of angers of the past, we end up living there.

That doesn't mean it's easy to give up the anger, but it is necessary. And compassion and anger can't take up the same space, so when you find yourself feeling that anger, you can choose compassionate self-talk to drown out the anger. Acknowledge the feeling, but substitute a compassionate and encouraging message. Drown out the anger with love and compassion for yourself.

And if you can't, then pretend your talking to someone you love and care about (because you should be). Don't let yourself become an internal bully. Otherwise you not only have wasted the past, you also end up wasting your present and your future.
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