Monday, March 14, 2011
Made to Crave Mondays - Chapter 4
NOW, here comes the A word - Accountability. I love it but I also really HATE it. Accountability works for me, but it's also annoying to me. There, I said it. And, it's the deep, honest, raw truth that hides in my heart. I need friends who are strong enough to stick with me even when I start (sometimes without realizing it) concocting schemes to avoid them or the opportunity to be real with them about my eating habits and exercise routine. I don't know why it is this way when it comes to developing these healthy habits. When I'm trying to show more patience toward my husband or daughter, I have no problem with accountability. In fact, I welcome it. When I'm trying to spend more time with God, I join a Bible study group so I can be held accountable for what I've read and the reflecting I've done. This doesn't bother me. Yes, sometimes I fess up about not getting through the whole thing this week. But, I'm always glad that I've been able to finish what I've finished and to share with my friends what God's putting on my heart and how He is refining me. But, when it comes to food and exercise...I RESIST! Why? I'm not sure except that this area is so hard for me and I hate admitting defeat time after time after time after time after...well, you get the picture. But, we've reached the Accountability chapter in Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst. And, I must dive in. So, will you hold me accountable by answering the questions too? Maybe together we can face the daunting phase that is ACCOUNTABILITY! :)
Made to Crave Reflection Questions for Chapter Four:
1. When a friend experiences success with healthy food choices and losing weight, do you feel encouraged and inspired by her example, or do you feel discouraged and envious? Do you communicate your feelings to your friend or keep them to yourself? Jill's Answer: I guess I feel a little bit of both. Like most people, I have a lot of friends who have become really serious about their eating and exercise habits and have made a tremendous change in their appearance and overall health (Lysa TerKeurst being one of them, ha!). And I'm always so excited and happy for these friends. At the same time, though, I remember when I lost 60 lbs before getting pregnant with Alyssa. I remember feeling so much better physically, mentally, and emotionally. I remember having more energy and being able to find things to wear without a big ordeal. And, I feel shame and anger with myself for having gained it ALL back...every last pound! I feel frustrated over the MANY times I've started up again in this getting healthy department only to fail, majorly. Maybe I lose 5, 10, or even 20 pounds, but I always end up right back at the same place on the scale. I feel defeated! I'm happy for my friends who have success but a little bit of me feels like their success is another slap in the face for me. I know that's not true. But it can feel that way! Am I alone here?
2. Complete this sentence: I do/do not want to invite a friend to help me on my journey to healthy eating because....
Jill's Answer: OK, how about both? Ha ha! I DO want to invite a friend to help me on my journey to healthy eating because I know I will have more success when I am being honest with another person who is traveling this road with me. I know I will be more likely to work out if a friend is waiting for me at the gym. I know I will make healthier food choices if I have to fess up to a friend every time I make the wrong choice. I KNOW this would be a good thing for me!
I DO NOT want to invite a friend to help me on my journey to healthy eating because I really LOVE being lazy and eating yummy junk. There, I said it. Popping a candy bar or a handful of chips in my mouth can be done quickly, quietly, and secretly. No one has to know...unless I'm being held accountable by a friend. I can have good intentions to go for a run but when the alarm goes off I can quickly, quietly, and secretly tell myself that I didn't sleep well, I don't feel well, or I'm just plain TOO tired to go right now. The best thing for my body is to rest. UNLESS...my friend is waiting at the gym for me.
I guess I'm realizing this is a war going on within me. A desperate desire to make changes but a desperate clinging to the unhealthy changes that brought me to this place where I find myself at 40 years old!
3. If accountability is crucial, what is the biggest challenge you face in making accountability part of your healthy eating plan? Jill's answer: I have to be completely honest here and say maybe I don't want to change my lifestyle to become healthier AS MUCH as I want to continue eating chips and salsa, Chinese take-out, and an easy frozen pizza that I just popped in the oven for an effortless family dinner. I think I really need to take a look at my desires and motivations. Isn't being healthy and modeling healthy habits for my daughter enough reason to let go of these temporary indulgences? Wouldn't a longer, more vibrant life WITH the ones I love be worth committing to an agreement with someone who will truly hold me accountable and challenge me to stick with the changes I really do want to make? I believe I'm coming upon a fork in the road (no pun intended with the fork, ha!) and the time for me to choose which path to take is here. OH, how I want to choose that right path. But, the other one is so YUMMY and tempting. I'm really in need of a total mind transformation, here! Jesus help me!!!!
4. If you were to imagine a life-giving experience of accountability, one that empowers you and helps you to feel "companioned" rather than alone in your struggles, how would you describe that experience? What kind of person would you want to be accountable to? What do you hope this person would do for you? What do you hope they would NOT do? How would you determine whether or not the relationship is providing effective accountability? Jill's answer: I have already found this person and this relationship. My friend, Katie, helped me train for a 5-K this past fall and for the most part, our relationship was one of trainer-trainee. But, as we continued, we became more along the lines of true accountability partners in this area. She is much further along in her weight loss goals and has much more ambitious running goals (she's training for a half-marathon), but she has always been very patient with my level of training and my own need for encouragement and accountability. HOWEVER, I have begun the evading process. As I have experienced failure I have failed to talk with Katie about running and setting up times for us to run together. I've avoided conversations about healthy eating or tried to focus on what's going on with her instead of me. I've put Katie at a safe distance and it's time to ask her to forgive me and to see if she would be willing to give it another shot. She really is the ideal companion for this type of journey. She's always encouraging me with smiles, cheers, and verses that are so helpful. She's willing to check in with me as much as I want her to and is never condemning when I admit failure. I just hope I haven't ruined the friendship. I don't think I have...but I will need to talk with her ASAP. Well, as soon as I get my voice back that is! (In case you haven't seen my Facebook and Twitter posts, I've lost my voice due to a sinus virus and infection. Not fun for a woman whose life is all about verbal communication. Thank God for the internet, though!) It's time to renew this accountability and for it be a whole lot more of a two-way process than it has been in the past. Katie is one of those rare gems that you don't want to ever lose once you've found her as a friend. I want to be the kind of friend to her that she has been to me. I hope I will have that opportunity! And, maybe God will open new opportunities as well.
And, I hope YOU will find your own Katie. Someone who will provide the right amount of accountability that will encourage to make those important life changes that need to be made. Oh, and I'd love to have a cyber-accountability-partnership with you. As we continue to work through Lysa's book, we can be honest with each other on how we're doing and encourage each other to keep going even when it is OH SO HARD! What do you think? I can't wait to read what you have to say this week!
LOVE to you!!!