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My Body Is My Home: I think I need to downsize

Kelley McElreath Anxiety Mental Health Over Weight Overweight PTSD sponsors suicidal Suicide suicidesurvivor Triggers Weight Gain Weight Loss Weight Loss Tips

“A scale can tell what a body weighs, but not its value.”

~Marty Rubin

I just turned 47 years old. I used to be a perfect weight for me until I was about 25. Then I was really overweight for about 5 years. THEN, I lost all of my weight with a lot of hard work and determination. That was about 15 years ago. 

I've gained about 10 - 15 pounds and then lost it many times during those years. Right now, I am having the hardest time trying to lose 10 lousy pounds. Now, it is closer to 12 pounds. When I gain past 10 pounds, I feel my self-confidence start to suffer. I've been thinking this week how my weight issues are similar to my mental health issues. So, I thought I would just ponder this here on my blog. 

With mental health, it is so frustrating for myself and so many others when we can do so well for so long and then completely out of nowhere...BAM!! What is funny as I sit here and think about it is that I have had this battle with this 10 pounds consistently over the past four months. Almost 5 months ago, I started working my business full time. I work from home so I have been sedentary to top it off. I think I put all my focus on helping others and forgot about myself. 

I really believe that most of what happens to us mentally can be lessened in intensity if we prepare. That is how it is with weight issues. So, if you deal with triggers, the key is to identify them, then prepare for how you will handle them BEFORE they happen. That is exactly how I lost my weight. I love food. I love cooking and buffets. I learned to drink water and eat healthy foods before going to eat somewhere I knew I would be very tempted. I do the same thing for my mental health. I have a very long list of tools that I have either learned or created for myself that I KNOW work for me. The moment I have an issue, I start doing things on that list. Works 90+% of the time.

So I am wondering why I cannot do this for my weight. I feel SO good when I am about 10 pounds smaller. Some people who know me would probably say I look just fine the way that I am and that I'm being ridiculous. In the grand scheme of things, I could think to myself that yes, it could be much worse and I could be like I was 15 years ago. However, even just a little weight left unchecked will lead to a much bigger problem. Pun intended!

THAT is how we get out of whack with our mental health! If I were to have an episode of depression let's say, and I let myself stay in bed for half a day or a whole day, that is fine. But when that second day comes and I choose to stay in bed and sink deeper, the next day and any subsequent day will be even harder to pull myself out of. 

The key to anything, I believe, is consistency and balance. The more you practice good habits, the easier they become. I rarely have a downward spiral and never contemplate suicide anymore. I know the reason is because I practice what I preach in that area. Thinking about this weight issue, I have not been consistent in the past few months and have gotten out of my habits of eating healthy and eating smaller portions. 

So, I will make an effort to prepare, be consistent and also be good to myself. I don't know about you, but I find that if my weight is out of balance, it throws me off mentally. If I don't feel good about my physical health, I don't feel good about my mental health. I know that is not how everyone sees it. Some people used to tell me when I was overweight that if I got the inside right, the outside would follow. I don't find that necessarily true for me. I think they go hand and hand. 

I am saying that losing the weight now will not be easy because I have let it get this far. It will be harder than it would have been if I wouldn't have gained more than five pounds. I notice that it is harming my own mental health and self-talk. So by getting some healthy habits in place for my physical health, I in turn help my OWN  mental health. 

What are your thoughts? Do you struggle with issues like this? I'd love to hear from you and get your feedback and comments on this!


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