“Why are You so Damn Fat!?” ~ Martha Beck Tells It Like It Is!
Our diet is an important issue for all of us. Weight loss, particularly as we get older, becomes increasingly difficult. We need all the help we can get, not only to lose weight but to maintain it. I don’t know about you, but I’ve asked myself this question more than once! The first time I heard these words, however, were spoken to me by a “friend”, when I was nine years old — minus the expletive. Prior to that, the idea of being too fat, too thin, or anything other than just me, never crossed my mind. After that, it never left. And, I wasn’t even “fat”.
At the time I picked up Martha Beck’s book, The Four Day Win, End Your Diet War and Achieve Thinner Peace, I was unaware that my self-talk was a problem. I became a fan of Beck after reading Finding Your Own North Star. She’s straight forward, honest, intelligent, well-educated and very funny. Most importantly, she knows what she’s talking about, as much from her first hand experience as her vast education.
I downloaded the audio version of The Four Day Win, slipped on my walking shoes and headphones and headed out the door to walk the dog and find my way to thinner peace. The first words I heard after hitting “play” were, “Why are you so damn fat!?” What?? I swallowed hard and out of respect for the woman, I listened on.
Beck no doubt used this opening for shock value and she certainly got my attention. After all, who would say such a thing, beside mean girls and siblings? She went on to make her point and it was a good one. What we say to ourselves is far worse than anything anyone else says to us. We use words just like this over and over, day after day, year in and year out, not only about our appearance, but a vast array of things. We are not our own best friend. In fact, we’re our worst enemy! Why wouldn’t we want to soothe our wounds with a half gal of ice cream! (Incidentally, did you know ice cream doesn’t even come in half gallons anymore! That was not nice of the manufactures at all! ~ Yes, I am an addict. <— See? I just did it!)
Our daily stream of mental gibber jabber is far less helpful than it could be. After all, Beck writes, when it comes to diet, “who
doesn’t know the basics of weight loss? Eat less. Move more. That’s all there is to it!” So, it’s not about the “perfect diet”. It’s not about the “right exercise routine”. They can be helpful tools, but what really affects our ability to achieve our goals, no matter what they are, is the way we think and what we tell ourselves, both consciously and unconsciously.
If we want to lose weight, or overcome any obstacle we face, our first step must be to figure out what we are thinking. When we bringing our self-talk into conscious awareness, we can choose self-talk that supports our diet efforts, rather than sabotaging them.
The Four Day Win is not just a diet book. It’s far more and it’s worth the read before beginning any preplanned life change. If we’re going to succeed at anything we set out to do, it behooves us to become our own cheerleader.
First published June, 2010
© Dorothy Sander
NOTE: Before beginning any weight loss program be sure and consult with your physician. A BMI calculator will help you determine if you are carrying excess weight and how much.