Cybernetics is a comparative study of the electronic processes, the nervous system, and the brain. Such studies have given us a more complete understanding of how we learn. Human beings are basically learning mechanisms, and we solve problems and attain our goals, like computers, by using feedback. Thin Within is based on this concept. It has nothing to do with controlling yourself, using will power, or domination of any sort.
Each of us has a "god-given" genius inside of us that will reveal all we need to know to solve our problems. These tools are within you - not somewhere "out there." All you need to do is learn how to tap into your own genius.
In the past, before I realized that what I needed was already within me, whenever I was depressed, sad, or upset about my eating and my body, I used to think if only... if only I could find the perfect diet, that would solve everything.
The attraction to a diet is the promise. The promise that you will lose 10 pounds instantly, that if you lose 20 pounds you will meet the man or woman of your dreams and get the perfect job, because you're going to be thin and beautiful. However, it's a false promise, based on will power, deprivation, sacrifice, and control.
It's interesting that food is the only one of our obsessions (drinking, drugs, smoking, overwork, sex, etc.), that we can't eliminate. We can stop smoking or drinking but we can't stop eating. We need food to survive, so we must learn to handle it masterfully.
There's a really important part in the book here. Basically it notes that this isn't some concept you just read. In order for it to be effective, you have to decide that you're worth doing it. It isn't diet, but it *is* a behavioural change, much like anything else that's effective. And you can't just make the change effectively and permanently overnight. It takes learning and committing yourself to the 30 days outlined to learn it. Put your name in the comments of this entry as a committment to yourself that you are going to do this for yourself.
Now we're ready to proceed. The first exercise is extremely important because it will help pinpoint where you are, right now, in your relationship with food, your body, and the way you are currently eating.
Slow down for a moment, take a few deep breaths, and take a look at how you usually approach food and eating. Can you remember the last meal you had? Jot down your answers to the following questions. Don't think about the answers too much, simply write down what first comes to mind.
- Do you remember what you had to eat at this meal?
- What was it?
- How did you eat your food?
- Did you take plenty of time to enjoy it or did you gulp it down?
- Did you like what you were eating?
- What was going on in the environment as you ate?
- Was there a lot of noise and talking?
- Where you reading?
- Was the TV on?
- Or, was your meal filled with peace and quiet so you could really savor your food?
- How did you feel as you ate this meal?
- Was it an enjoyable experience?
It's a common mentality amongst those of us with compulsive eating problems or overeaters, that we feel as if we're always in a food race, and always losing. As we are eating one thing, we're not focusing on it, rather, we're thinking about what we're going to eat next.
Naturally thin people do not diet. The first tool we'll be introducing will allow you to eat like a naturally thin person starting right now.
The Thin Within Keys to Weight Mastery are the hearbeat of this whole program. They are a guide to conscious eating. All you have to do is follow them and you'll melt down to your naturally slim state. The first day you learn how to do this. The next 29 days you learn to overcome your resistance to doing it. The body doesn't resist. The body loves eating consciously and enjoying every morself of it! It is the mind that resists (I know this is probably sounding kooky and cultish by now, but bear with - it's taken from a book written in the 80's, mmkay?). After investing years in the struggle, the mind can't believe the first step is this easy.
We deserve to have it all.
What is the use of having it all if we don't feel we deserve it? Think of this as a gift you are giving yourself. Read each of the following Keys to Weight Mastery carefully. Copy them so that you can carry them with you, hang them on the refrigerator or anywhere you eat so they can guide you away from compulsive overeating to consciously eating "just enough" of the foods you really love.
1. Eat only when my body is hungry. This is the fundamental key to weight mastery. We eat only when we're hungry. We feel there's no such thing as a little bit, or kinda hungry. We either are or aren't. When in doubt, don't eat. Pay attention to your body's messages. The can be trusted. And if we eat only when we're hungry, we'll lose weight and we'll feel good. if you don't have a chance to eat when you're hungry, don't worry; your hunger will go away and come back later. Hunger acts like a snooze alarm. It comes, goes, and always returns. It's even alright to be hungry and choose not to eat! Now you're probably saying to yourself, "but I'm always hungry." Not true! We'll learn on Day 5 how to tell when you are really hungry.
2. Reduce the number of distractions in order to eat in a calm environment. We love to eat, and being in a calm environment truly allows us to slow down and enjoy every wonderful morsel of food. For the next 30 days, arrange your life so that you can eat alone whenever possible. This makes it much easier to recognize old eating patterns that don't work and to change them to new workable ones. When we say reduce the number of distractions, we mean turn off the TV and the music, send the children out, put aside readin, etc. You'll learn later how to eat like a thin person with family and friends, at parties and business meals.
3. Eat only when I'm sitting. There is no joy in eating on the run. Such eating is not very satisfying and it encourages picking. It's interesting how when you eat on the run, the mind erases the meal but the body doesn't. If you sit down at the table every time you eat, you will naturally slow down and pay more attention to your food, which is precisely the point. It is an invitation to conscious eating.
4. Eat only when my body and mind are relaxed. Why? because you will enjoy your food more. It's not necessary to be in a state of meditation - simply spend a moment or two being aware of yourself and the food before starting to eat. Take a few deep breaths. Look at the food before you as though you are seeing it for the first time. You will be amazed at how this slowing-down process will enhance your eating experience.
5. Eat and drink only the food and beverages my body loves. This permission is for you to choose to eat anything that you want to eat. In Thin Within there are no good foods or bad foods, no shoulds or should nots. You can eat anything your body loves to eat. What do we mean by that? We mean ask your body what it would really love to eat. You do this by closing your eyes, touching your stomach and abdomen, and asking your body, "What would you really love to eat right now?" This might be a novel or scarey idea to you. However, if you listen to your body, you can trust its answer.
At first as you learn to tune in to what your body really wants, you may hear it say it wants all those "bad" foods you're not supposed to have when dieting. Go for it - as long as you eat only when you're really hungry and stop BEFORE you're full. What is happening is an important part of the process. Your body is breaking its "diet pattern" of labelling foods as "good" or "bad," which will allow you to eat like a naturally thin person - when you're hungry and only those you love. Practice abandon and at the same time stay attuned to the messages of your body, which can be trusted. It will tell you exactly what it wants in order to feel and function at its best. Don't worry if you think you're eating too many cookies or too much pasta - eventually your body will call out for broccoli.
Begin to notice what you really love and what you don't. For instance. you may think you love a combination sandwich and your body really doesn't. Perhaps what you really love in a BLT is the bacon and mayonnaise and not the tomato and bread (or vice versa). Then go for that. If the part of Mexican food you really like is the melted cheese, then have just that. Practice abandon and be creative. Savor all the flavors of the your food and drink, and when you eat, enjoy the food without diluting it or washing it down with liquids.
6. Pay attention only to my food while eating. When you're eating alone that will be easy to do. However, when you're with another person, it might seem difficult to pay attention only to your food. When eating with others spend about thirty seconds focused on your food, then put your fork down and focus your attention on the other person and the conversation. I have noticed that I cheat the person I'm with if I eat while conversing, and I deprive myself of the pleasure of my food if I talk while eating. So alternate eating and talking. This will allow you to receive optimum pleasure from the food and relationships.
7. Eat slowly, savoring each bite. It seems obvious, doesn't it, to eat slowly and enjoy each bite? Why then is it so rarely practiced? We rush through life not noticing what we eat, whom we talk to, what we say. We're never really here in the present moment, we're in the future or in the past. By using this key every day - eating slowly and noticing each bite - we are teaching ourselves to be in present time, and we will begin to enjoy more fully all areas of our lives.
8. Stop BEFORE my body is full! Here we learn when to begin (when we're hungry), and when to stop (when we've had "just enough"). We'll learn how to tell when we're hungry and when we've had enough on Day 5. This is how you train yourself to return to the natural balance of your body. It's very simple. You start when you're hungry and you stop when you're comfortable. If you begin eating when you're hungry, it will be easier for you to recognize that comfortable place to stop, which is just before you are full.
These keys apply to all the food you eat, and all the beverages you drink, except water. that includes coffee (even black), tea, and diet sodas (drink these only if you really love them and you're thirsty). We consider everything except water as food and recognize that everything except water affects our level of hunger.
Remember: this is not a diet. The book here asks the reader to set aside any and all diet pills, shots, liquid protein, or diets and focus 100 percent on Thin Within, reiterating that you can eat anything you want and release weight as long as you use the Thin Within Keys to Weight Mastery. It takes a great leap of faith, but I'm with that.
- Use the Observations and Corrections Chart for the next 30 days to observe which Thin Within Keys to Weight Mastery you're using, and which ones you're not using. Every time you choose to eat or drink, place a check mark or star beside the keys that were used. If there are empty boxes at the end of your day, that will indicate for you to pay more attention to that particular key.
|1. I ate when my body was hungry.|
|2. I ate in a calm environment by reducing distractions.|
|3. I ate when I was sitting.|
|4. I ate when my body and mind were relaxed.|
|5. I ate and drank only the things my body loved.|
|6. I paid attention only to my food while eating.|
|7. I ate slowly, savoring each bite.|
|8. I stopped before my body was full.|