Lately I've been thinking a lot about priorities.
Right now....right now I have lots of competing priorities: Tuesday is my last day at my current job. I've been with the company 4 1/2 years, I've been at this particular location for 2. They won't have a replacement before I leave, so it's essential I use my last couple days to make it an easy transition, both for when I'm gone and for when the new librarian comes on board. Then, of course, there is my new job and wanting to start that on the right foot. My book comes out on July 20th and on the 27th I have a signing and book talk, which means carving out time to work on and practice the presentation. There's a week long trip to Florida in early August I need to plan and pack for and I've been so busy I've been a horrible friend I feel like so I need to set aside more time for the wonderful people in my life. Cultivating my relationship with BC is always a priority and in between all of that I'm needing to schedule interviews and edit episodes for my podcast.
Needless to say, there's a reason I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed lately.
That being said, notice what isn't currently listed as a priority?
Right, so, I'll just go ahead and say what I'm sure many are wondering: No, I did not attend FitBloggin '15 weighing what I weighed at FitBloggin '14. I'm currently up about 15 pounds from this time last year. In a spontaneous Friday evening chat session with other FitBloggin attendees, I had a complete cry fest over the fact that I am, once again, the Fat One in my family.
See, for awhile, back when I was at my lowest I was close to being the thinnest of my immediate family. But over the past few years as my weight has slowly started to climb, they have all lost weight and I am so, so proud of each and every one of them. But I was always the Fat One growing up and in high-school and in college and then somewhere along the line I just let it go and now I'm back to being the Fat One. And I recognize it's all my own choices versus all of their own choices but it's still a very bitter pill to swallow.
So, the other night, I was lying in bed trying to sleep and I was trying to figure out what was different now. Why was I having a much harder time focusing and losing the weight. What set me up for success 3, 4, years ago when I was really, really doing well and had lost 100 and then 135 lbs?
And then I realized: it was a matter of priorities.
It's not that I'm lazy: I mean, I still go to spinning at least once a week and, sure, maybe I'm not running as much but I still run and I have a race in two weeks. It's not that I'm binge eating. I mean, okay, admittedly I don't always make the best choices 100% of the time (who does?) but I always own and track my choices, whatever they are. My family, see, they made weight loss a priority in a way I haven't as of late.
The difference between Successful Me and Not Successful Me is that back in 2011 when I started, I literally had nothing else in my life competing for my attention. I was single and basically a hermit and had a job and very few, if any, extra curriculars. I was also super unhappy so, if nothing else, losing weight was a distraction and a welcome one at that, which is probably why I just focused in like a motherfucker. Losing weight turned into blogging about losing weight and being a "weight loss blogger" suddenly was a new priority, a new identity to adopt and man oh man did I thrive and love the external validation that came from all of that.
But, of course, I'm still successful, just in a very different way. I have a book coming out, people. I started writing when I was 10 so I don't know if I can completely emphasize the importance of this but in just a couple weeks I'll be able to go into bookstores all over Northeast Ohio and see a book with my name on the cover sitting on the shelf.
Of course, priorities change as life does and once life calms down a bit: once I leave my current job and settle into my new one, once I adapt to my new schedule, once I stop having so many things competing for my attention, I'll be able to stop and reevaluate and rewrite my priority list.
When that happens, there are two priorities I want to focus on for the rest of 2015. Even though I've had them in my head for awhile now, I had the hardest time putting them into words and then Dacia over at My Roots to Grow phrased it perfectly:
Eat well for my body and to support my active lifestyle
Find joy in movement
Once again, the number on the scale is still not a priority.
I don't want to eat certain foods or eat a certain way because of the overall effect it will have on the scale. I don't want to exercise because it will burn the calories I just consumed. Instead, I want to exercise because of how it makes me feel. I want to eat foods because they are good for me and support that exercise. If I lose weight as a byproduct of those choices, great! But, if not, that's okay, too, because my focus is on whole health and not just weight loss.
Love from the ashes,