I made a resolution for 2013, which was not to make any resolutions -- particularly with regard to my weight. Do I want to lose 20 pounds? Yes, I do. I always do. It's something that is continually on my mind -- not so much for health reasons, but strictly for vanity and feelings of my own esteem. But I don't want it to be tied in with New Year's.
However, my subconscious had other plans. As I was working on a story for a local publication concerning weight loss and New Year's Resolutions (see how the mind does that? It got around me in a very clever way), I found myself on the phone with a weight loss therapist whose angle really spoke to me.
It was her life's work to help people uncover the messages they received as children (prior to having the ability to construct ideas based on logic, so before age 8) and how they have interpreted and formed behavioral patterns based on those messages.
But then she stopped me dead in my tracks -- she referred to the sub-conscious as a Gremlin, and referenced the work of Rick Carlson, who wrote Taming Your Gremlin.
I bought the book and thanks to a little blessing in my life known as Amazon Prime, it came to my door within days.
I can't relay it all to you. It's a good little book and I recommend it. It won't shatter the earth you walk on or send lightning bolts careening into your psyche, but it's a book that gets you acquainted with calling out that negative voice in your head -- the one that tells you things that seem to sabotage your best intentions and cause you misery.
And of course it got me thinking about that voice in my head -- my Gremlin, who is a total bitch, by the way, and spends much of her time telling me I am a disgusting fat-ass who will never succeed in trying to be anything but a disgusting fat-ass.
On a good day, when I have managed to lock my Gremlin in a trunk in my head, I know the truth. The truth is that while my body is imperfect, it is mine and I am incredibly lucky to have it. I am healthy, I am vibrant, and most importantly, I am a thousand things that have nothing to do with my body at all but have everything to do with my character.
But the Gremlin, as you all know, has a different agenda.
And so while I would love to go on and on about all the things my Gremlin has to say, I think it's best not to pay that drunk chain-smoking loser another moment of mind, and instead to share with you the best piece of advice found within the book's pages.
When your Gremlin rears his/her ugly head, and this could be in the form of negative self-talk, an irresistible bad habit, or putting limits on your own abilities, simply take a moment to acknowledge it and then move on.
Take a deep breath in, and breathe out the words "I am taming."
Take one more deep breath in and breathe out the words "My Gremlin."
I am Taming. My Gremlin.
And then let it go.