Show Up!

by Moira on July 27, 2014

(This is the third in a series of posts honoring Angeles Arrien, and the lessons I learned from her.  The second is here.)

The task of the warrior is to show up, to be visible and empower others through example and intention.

— Angeles Arrien

This blog post has been weeks, even months, in the making.  And still, after numerous coaching sessions with different coaches, it doesn’t come easy.  This Showing Up, being visible, is a challenge for me, perhaps because for over 50 years, I have used my weight to hide, to be invisible.  But here goes…

The past year or so has been a time of profound change for me in my personal journey of shifting my relationship with food, and to a lesser extent, my relationship with my body.  About a year ago, I wrote about my experiences of playing the DietBet game.  There was a lot that didn’t work for me in that experience.  What did work is that it reconnected me with a willingness to look again at some of the choices I was making.

One of the teachings learned from Angie was the rule of three:  if an idea comes up once, it can be safely ignored.  The second time it comes up, from a different source, you would do well to pay attention.  If it comes up three times from different sources, ignore it at your peril.

There is a lot of Type 2 Diabetes in my family.  Somewhat remarkably, I think, I don’t have it.  Yet. And I did have the idea that I was a ticking time bomb.  This was sort of niggling at me  (that’s 1).

About that time, my good friend and colleague, Susan Freeman over at QiCoach, invited me to do a nutritional assessment as a practice client for a nutritional training she was taking.  I listened to her recommendations (that’s 2) and began incorporating some of them.  And then,  from the daily TED talk list, this talk by Peter Attia got my attention.  He asks some very provocative questions, like “What if some of our fundamental ideas about obesity are just wrong?”  (that’s 3 – ok.  got it).

After years of practicing my conscious eating guidelines, I wasn’t about to go back to the land of forbidden foods, and a strict “eat this, don’t eat that” food identity.  I was willing to gradually shift my food choices and experiment with a different balance.  I emphasized willingness over willpower, and paid attention to how I felt.  And I was slowly dropping pounds.  This is not my primary goal; however, I don’t deny that I feel some satisfaction at this side effect.

In January, I felt willing to do a 30-day structured program.  I marveled that I experienced no struggle about it – only clarity, intention and commitment.  And at the end of the 30 days, I was done with the structured program.  How is this different than a diet?  Because I experienced no deprivation, there was no resulting binge.  Just a few different choices.  I  had lost more weight  and weighed less than I had in over 30 years.  But there was no “bounce back”.  Not a single pound.  That, to me, is indicator enough that this is different.  That this weight loss was just a result of my body healing and moving back into balance.

“How does it feel?” I am asked.  Honestly, not that different, physically.  Which has been part of my reluctance to talk or write about it.  I’ve lost forty pounds in a little over a year, and I’m down eighty from my all time high, and that’s an accomplishment to be celebrated.  But more than the numbers, I celebrate my willingness to take the journey, to be an experiment of one, and to learn what works for me on all four levels:  physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.

That is the warrior that I am, the example I want to set and  what I empower other people to do.


{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Pat Obuchowski July 29, 2014 at 11:42 am

Moira, Thanks for writing about your challenges and struggles. I love how you have opened the door to thinking about changing our old beliefs (not easy) and living in Attia’s question “What if some of our fundamental ideas about obesity are just wrong?”
You are a warrior and I want to congratulate you on where you are with your warriorness. Warrior on!

Susan July 29, 2014 at 1:21 pm

Thank you for sharing! I just read your post, and you are such a warrior! Thanks for the shout-out. Would love to talk soon. I love you, sweet woman

Melanie July 29, 2014 at 3:42 pm

Wonderfully Transparency is so appreciated. I know my own personal weight issues. I love what you gave me. You are a warrior

Moira July 29, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Thanks, Pat. I will be posting more about the Attia TED Talk. It deserves it’s own post!

Moira July 29, 2014 at 5:49 pm

Thanks, Susan! And thanks for all the modeling and support over the past year! Would love to talk soon!

Moira July 29, 2014 at 5:50 pm

Thanks, Melanie. This is the first of several planned posts about my journey. Stay tuned!

Maggie July 29, 2014 at 7:50 pm

Willingness over willpower. Love that! Thanks for your genuine self, your inspiration, and your adventures into some groundbreaking territory.

Moira July 30, 2014 at 7:16 pm

Thanks, Maggie! There’s a lot more to say about “willingness, no willpower” – another post soon!

Robbie August 9, 2014 at 7:17 pm

Awesome post, congrats!

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