Life & The Pursuit of Happiness

Growing up parents tell you, “If you put your mind to it, you can achieve anything!” or “You can be anything you want to be!” This is true, and I honestly believe it. The problem is they don’t teach you how to do it.

How many young children are taught the lessons they need in life? To learn from our mistakes, we have to be allowed to make them. It seems in this day and age, that’s just not possible. We’ve gone from letting our children grow up on their own, to basically swaddling them until they’re late teens. We don’t give them the tools they need to succeed, and then we wonder why they fail at some of the most menial tasks.

Life for me as a kid was far from normal, but I always had supportive family members that backed me up no matter what choices I made. As a teen, I tried so hard to fit in to all the different molds in school and yet ended up in none of them.

After high school, I’ve managed to move from job to job with relative ease testing out the waters of various entry level positions in different industries. I’ve been in various relationships with varying degrees of success, but ultimately I’m approaching 40 years old with nothing in life really hampering me down.

I’ve come to realize that I’m entering into my own form of mid-life crisis. While the typical mid-life crisis involves shirking responsibility and pursuing whimsy, mine is more atypical. Call it an “Anti Mid-life Crisis”.

I’ve spent the better part of 20 years simply trying to remain content and surviving with what life, and those I surrounded myself with, gave me. Now? I’m a full-time student going to college. I am months away from my AA degree, with my target set on a Master’s.

Also for the better part of the last 20 years, I’ve lived in disregard as far as my body is concerned. I’ve accumulated not just weight problems, but others as well. While not all of these can be attributed to eating poorly, they can almost all be attributed to poor choices. Bad food choices coupled with poor exercise routine has most definitely left their mark.

My biggest problem is procrastination and motivation. I procrastinate and I find motivation waning. While procrastinating, I find other things to distract myself with, and then “Oops, too late to work out…” As I got bigger, I found myself having to fight through bouts of depression. Being depressed, I would of course turn to things that made me happy such as food and alcohol. The cycle continues, the hole deepens, and here we are.

Mentally at this point in my life, I feel outstanding. I have such an outlook on life that I’ve never had before. There is an air of positivity in my every day life that I lacked for so many years. When people ask, “How’s your day?” I often respond, “Just another day in paradise!” with a smile. While it may seem ingenuine, I really mean it. Every day I wake up, I’m thankful that I’m here and hope that I can make a lasting impression in people’s lives. It took a lot of time and perseverance to start that mental ball rolling, but now I feel like there is no stopping it. My positivity is like a snowball rolling down a steep mountain and getting bigger as it goes.

Sadly, however… so am I. Mentally I’m feeling outstanding, physically? Not so much. I know my problem is that I just have to break my current routine. I have to change it. I have to adjust my current routine to incorporate good decisions and create a routine of that. Life for me always seems to be about timing and rhythm. Without it, I am in shambles. Unfortunately though, my rhythm is a bad one and I’ve made little progress physically.

I bought shorts the other day. Same size as the pants I have, from the same company, and they don’t fit. 🙁 What a wake-up call… I’m sure it’s because the pants I have are “relaxed fit”… They should call it what it is “You’re fat and don’t want to admit it, so here’s a pair of relaxed fit jeans that are really just a size larger than what the tag says.”

So, here I am approaching 40 with the best attitude I have ever had in my life, and apparently I am self-sabotaging that by making choices that will eventually drive me into the ground early.

Time to wake up, before I can’t anymore.

One Reply to “Life & The Pursuit of Happiness”

  1. You have an awesome way with words 🙂

    I know I’m not over weight, but that doesn’t mean I don’t struggle. I’ve had 3 kids and with the last 2 I had to work to lose that weight. 7mths after Loli was born, my ex told me I was fat, I knew this but I wasn’t too worried because I just had a 3rd kid. After she turned a year, and I was still 20+lbs over weight, I hated myself. I felt gross, weighed down, my joints hurt, and I was always craving junk. Wes told me something that changed my lack of motivation and helped me work to lose the weight.

    It’s so simple it sounds stupid, but he said, only take in as many calories as you burn. I was sitting around all day, so I wasn’t burning anything, yet I was taking in around 2,000 calories a day (I only need about 1,000.) So for 3 days I counted my calories when I ate, and discovered it was a lot. I decided to cut it down by 200 calories every couple of weeks. I started taking vitamins (lost 5lbs, others can lose more) they really curbed my fat food cravings after a couple of weeks so I lost quite a bit more weight. I froze juice in a cup and ate it with a spoon so I had that feeling and motion of eating, but it wasn’t food. I stopped eating past 9pm (that helped a lot too!) I ate mostly salads, veggies, and chicken instead of red meat. I’d do small easy workouts while watching a movie. Pasta was my chosen grain, so I stopped eating a lot of bread, rice, and breaded junk. I don’t eat the fat on meat (I’ve done that since childhood though.) Eating slower and really chewing every bite helped a TON! It takes your brain 15min to realize your stomach is full and gives the signal to stop eating, but by that time people have eaten too much. You have to listen to your brain, not your stomach.

    It took months, but I lost enough to drop a couple of pant sizes. When they say the last 10lbs is the hardest to lose, they’re not joking!

    I didn’t do this all at once, because doing all of that right off the bat is practically impossible! Another thing that helped, is when I wanted to eat more but knew I didn’t need it, I would tell myself, there’s always tomorrow and it will still be here. So I’d either work out so I could eat it, or I’d save it for the next day.

    It’s a pain in the ass, and really something you have to want in order to get because it’s definitely not easy! But it’s so worth it in the end, and its easier to keep it off because you automatically follow your routine. Anyway, that’s what helped me. I followed my own diet plan, and watching the weight come off felt amazing.

    Find your motivation and just know that you won’t starve, because food is always there when you need it!

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