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    The Low Carb Luxury Online Magazine   Low Carb Connoisseur
    March 3, 2004    PAGE 1       > About LCL Magazine      > Cover Page      > Inside Cover      Feature Pages:   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11  12     

Featured Articles
 Combining Sense and Soul
 St. Patty's Day Feast
 Leprechaun Treats
 The Story of St. Patrick's Day
 Low Carb Kitchen Hints & Tips
 Change: The Essence of Life
 Interview: Jonny Bowden
 Quashing the Weather Excuse
 St. Paddy's Day Chuckles!
 Getting Back to Basics
 Make It Low Carb!
 Snapshot: O'Charley's



   Low Carb Energy magazine



                Combining Sense and Soul by Debbie Judd, RN
      Understanding what it takes to make a lasting change...

Debbie Judd is a nurse for Drs. Michael and Mary Dan Eades authors of Protein Power. Debbie writes for Body Trends, as well as with the Eades answering literally hundreds of emails, phone calls and letters regarding the Protein Power plan.

                                          "Those who look only to the past or present
                                                        are certain to miss the future."
                                                                                John F. Kennedy

It's easy to make a decision to change "who we are or how I want to be" but implementing your decision and making it last requires having the tools to stay on target.

The process of "change" can be frustrating and futile, if you don't understand how it works. Even though we "know" the piece of pie isn't in our best dietary interest, why is it that our heart "tells us" we need it? We would feel so much better if we could just have a small piece or a few bites... Then, once we indulge, the guilt sets in so we decide we've "blown it," so might as well eat the whole thing!

Increase your Awareness
Does this scenario sound familiar? How many times have you started a diet over again and again just to find yourself back at the starting gate? Making the "unconscious" conscious, or "consciousness-raising," was first described by Sigmund Freud. Raising your level of awareness and increasing the amount of information available to you will improve the likelihood of making intelligent decisions about the problem or behavior you want to change.

Be Your Own Best Advocate
Alter your external and social environment to support your decision. Social liberation will lend support to personally empower your behavior to change. Only eat at restaurants that support your dietary needs; only socialize in "non-smoking" clubs if trying to stop smoking; don't socialize with negative people if trying to incorporate a more positive outlook on life. The increase in self-esteem will further empower you to believe in your ability to change.

Become Aware of Your Defenses against Change
We often make excuses to continue an unfavorable habit until one day, someone close to us experiences the very disease or problem we are inevitably avoiding. Your obese brother is diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and will likely suffer from long-term side effects if he doesn't loose weight. Your mother has been diagnosed with lung cancer and asks that you finally quit smoking. Emotional arousal parallels consciousness-raising, but works on a deeper, feeling level. The goal of both is to increase awareness and depth of feeling to move you towards action.

Evaluate Your Values
Give some thought to how your problem behavior conflicts with your personal values. You hopefully will come to a place where you truly believe and feel that life would be so much better without the problem. If trying to loose weight, perceive yourself as an active, thin and energetic person. Evaluate the cost of the change in time, energy, pleasure, stress and image. What are the pros and cons of trying to overcome your problem? These are important questions to ask your-self when applying self-reevaluation.

The choice to change brings responsibility into the equation. This acknowledgement of knowing you are the only one who is able to respond, speak, and act for yourself is called "self-liberation." At first you tell yourself you are going to change and then you go public. Announce to others that you have made a decision to change. This self-applied pressure helps you stick to your program of change.

Substitute old Behaviors
Countering or replacing healthy behaviors or responses for old responses will counter condition those old patterns. If you are more likely to over-eat sitting in front of the television, then make a habit of eating only at the table. When stressed out, go for a brisk walk instead of to the refrigerator. There are many good counter activities. The trick lies in finding out what works for you.

Healthy Environment
Create an environment that supports your behavioral change. Remove candy, sweets and junk food from your house. Place pictures of yourself on mirrors or the refrigerator of when you liked how you felt and looked.

Elicit helping relationships along the way. Whether a friend, a spouse, professional or clergy; helping relationships provide support, caring, understanding and acceptance. Rewards for positive changes versus punishment for bad behavior will support the process of change. Steps to reinforce your behavior include: self-appraisal, a gift to yourself, or winning a bet with a friend.

Understanding the process of change will enable you to evaluate your progress or realize where you get off track. Use this information daily to remind yourself that change is a process and takes time.

                                                           Debbie Judd, RN

Copyright © March 2004  Debbie Judd, RN and Low Carb Luxury
Title photo Copyright 2004 Neil Beaty and Low Carb Luxury


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