As of this morning, I am on a diet.
Well, no, not really. It’s more like I’m resetting my eating. But I’m using the South Beach model to get me going, because good food decisions just feel so overwhelming these days. It’s probably appropriate that I’m starting this of all weeks, as it was a year ago this week that I went completely off the rails in a combination of stress and anxiety eating. But it has to stop. None of my clothes fit, and I’m back to not liking how I look in pictures. This weekend I did all my shopping, this morning I got on the scales for my starting weight, and off we go.
As I was looking over all the lists and plans and menus for this system, though, I started to realize something. Really, the SB diet is just the diet they gave me once I was released back to real food after my surgery. Lean protein, lots of veggies, low carbs and sugar. It wasn’t anything I didn’t know, I just couldn’t see the forest for the trees. By stepping out of my head, all the mental clutter that was getting in my way, I was able to see that I knew what I needed to do and put away all that extra stuff.
Which of course made me think of astrology.
No, don’t leave. I’m not one of those people who reads their horoscope every morning (mostly because those are too general to be of any use whatsoever). But I did study astrology, and tarot, and in the end, I realized the value of both those tools isn’t that they tell us truth, but they take use out of the clutter of our minds to look in different ways at whatever the issue is we are trying to address. A reader will give you all their thoughts on the symbols and patterns they see in the cards, and then you try to make sense of them given your own knowledge of the situation. And maybe you realize soemthing that you hadn’t been allowing yourself to consider before. Or maybe it brings you around to an entirely new angle on your problem to give you an a-ha moment. That didn’t come from the cards. That came from you narrowing your focus, blocking out the extraneous for those few moments it takes to think “How does that piece of symbolism actually reflect in this situation?” It comes from you. You were just in your own way.
I think diets are the same way. “Diets” don’t work. Everyone knows that (or I hope they do). Fad diets especially don’t work. I get into this with my mother occassionally. BUT. The change in thinking that starting a diet brings, the analysis of “what am I doing now and what do I need to change” that comes with a new diet, THAT insight does work. It resets your brain, as long as you understand that the diet, like the stars or the cards, are not telling you truth, they are changing your perception.
So here I go. Starting Phase 1 today with some modifications and exceptions. I have to eat protein first and not the high volume of veggies that this plan requires, and I have one meal coming up that is totally out of my control (plus Thanksgiving. Oof.), so I’m going to do Phase 1 the whole month of November with those exceptions and see where I’m at from there.