I have two amazing children. My daughter, Skylar, is fourteen and my son, Jayden, is thirteen. I had them close together intentionally, and it has seemed to work out very well. I do recall, however, one particular challenge that came from having children “back to back,” and that challenge has given me great insight on today’s topic, Don’t Give Up, Get Unstuck.
Prior to my first pregnancy, I had always had a pretty healthy weight. I was always active in dancing, sports, intentional workout habits and I ate pretty well. I gained a healthy thirty pounds with my first, and lost twenty of it right away. When Skylar was nine months old and I was still carrying that extra ten pounds, I was elated to find out Skylar would be having a baby sibling! With my second pregnancy I, again, gained a healthy thirty pounds and shortly after Jayden’s delivery lost twenty pounds, just like with Skylar, no problem.
As the months rolled out and I enjoyed being a mom to my two little angels, those net twenty pounds were not going away. Twenty additional pounds on a five-foot frame is significant. It is multiple pant sizes and at first I was okay with it because I expected the weight to fall off, but by the time Jayden was about nine months old, I began to wonder.
I became frustrated and discouraged with my additional weight. None of my clothes fit and “I just had a baby” was becoming less and less true. I did not feel good about this extra weight. In fact, I resented it. I complained about it. I moaned and groaned about it, and I didn’t know it at the time, but I was in stage one of getting stuck- resentment.
As the moaning and groaning went on, I got tired of hearing my complaints and I’m sure everyone around me did as well. I became more silent about my dissatisfaction and began to avoid the topic all together. I avoided the scale. I avoided looking in the mirror. I avoided the mall. I was not going to buy a bigger size. I just made the clothes that I had work, and I certainly avoided setting a goal to lose the weight or create a weight loss plan. I just kept squeezing my booty in my jeans and stayed busy with my angels, family, and work, while silently hoping for the weight to disappear. This is what you call stage two of getting stuck, avoidance.
On occasion I’d slip back to step one and resent the weight and complain, but seeing that it only made me feel worse, avoidance was the more appealing option, so I avoided.
As the weeks rolled on, my avoidance grew to tolerance. I began reasoning and rationalizing my current reality. I made it the new normal. I adapted to my larger body size and started buying clothes again. I embraced my new look and made it who I was with thoughts like:
- “I look good after having two kids.”
- “Who was I to think I would go back to pre-baby size. That’s probably not even possible.”
- “I just need to accept the fact that I am going to be bigger than I was before. That’s the way this works.”
- “This is just who I am now.”
- “I need to learn to love and accept myself like I am.”
I didn’t recognize it at the time, but I know now, tolerance is final stage of getting stuck. Tolerance is when we give up and give in.
Getting stuck doesn’t happen overnight. It happened slowly, then suddenly, and the stages we go through in Getting stuck is a predictable process. Recognizing these stages is one way to prevent getting stuck.
Below is our typical getting stuck process
- An event occurs and changes our status quo.
- We RESIST and resent that change.
- We AVOID dealing with it.
- We TOLERATE it.
- We repeat- resist, avoid, tolerate.
If you are anything like me, you may already be thinking about certain areas of your life, at home or at work, where you are experiencing stuck-ness. It may be in your finances, in may be in a relationship, in maybe something as simple as avoiding or tolerating some much needed improvements around the house.
Getting stuck is exhausting and getting stuck is damaging. It damages our confidence, it damages our energy, and it compromises our potential. It compromises our self image. It causes us to quit! I was twenty-four and ready to through the towel in on my health, on my fitness, and on my weight. I had begun to believe, “This is just the way I am now.”
Getting stuck is a process that happens in our mind. Where the mind goes, the body follows. I have learned to listen to my thoughts and assess them. Are they negative thoughts, keeping me stuck or are they positive thoughts moving me forward?
Getting stuck happens slowly, one thought at a time. Are you stuck in any area of your life? How will you know? Well, look at your results. What are your thoughts about your results? Are they thoughts that cause you to feel resentful, to avoid or to tolerate? If so, there’s a chance you are on the road to stuckness.
If you recognize you are stuck, have no fear! You are not alone and just like there is a predictable way of getting stuck; there is a predictable way of getting unstuck, which we will talk about next week.
So I shared with you about how I gave up and got stuck, but getting stuck isn’t the full story. It’s just chapter one, I didn’t stay there. I woke up, got unstuck and gave up giving up. I hope you will do that too! If you are stuck, don’t worry it about. Let’s just start by recognizing it.
Reflect on the process of getting stuck. What stage are you in? What thoughts are you believing? Take a moment now and write them down. Writing them down is the beginning of raising your awareness.
We’ll talk more next week, but for now, celebrate the fact that you can name where you are stuck and you can identify what stage you are in. You can’t get going on a destination, until you know where you are beginning. Owning your stuck-ness is just like getting on that scale and facing reality. You may not see what you want to see, but at least you are seeing the truth.
If you aren’t stuck, but know somebody who is, forward this to them and be sure they read next week’s message on getting unstuck. As for this week, don’t give up. Get unstuck! Step one for getting unstuck is simply recognizing and admitting it. I did it, and I know you can too!
With Love and Volition,