Home » Encouragement » Payoff


What is the payoff?

If you are constantly stuck in a rut, doing things that you don’t want to do, there has to be a payoff. Discover what that is and address it, and you’ll fix the problem.

Say you want to get in shape, but you keep overeating and “cheating” on your exercise routine. You “forget” to walk or go to the gym. You eat three pieces of pie when really you only wanted half a piece. You eat too much at the buffet, even though you say you don’t want to, again and again.

You feel guilty after you do these things, but you keep doing them.

They are symptoms, not the source.

Dig down further.

Who first taught you what to feel about yourself? What did they say? How did they make you feel?

Perhaps your family ignored you most of the time. Perhaps the only time that they even talked to you was to complain about your size or how you “were eating them out of house and home.” You were called fat, lazy, worthless.

Negative attention is still attention.

So as an adult, you still need attention.

But you’ve been taught that the only way to get attention is to be fat, lazy, or worthless.

So you keep repeating that message to yourself.

So you’ll overeat, and skip the gym, and fail, over and over, because that is how you were taught you should be treated. Even though they aren’t telling you this message anymore, you are now telling it to yourself.

Time to learn a new message, and retrain your brain.

Time to create a different payoff – where you get happy that you have achieved a goal. Maybe the goal was only eating two plates at the buffet, instead of four. Maybe the goal was parking the car further away in the parking lot so you had to walk further to get to work.

Little goals count. They add up.

Just like coming off being addicted to a drug, relearning how to treat yourself with kindness takes a lot of work. You have to rewire your brain. New healthy habits don’t have the same kind of payoff that the old bad habits do – not yet. The old habits were wired into you for years – and the work was done by people you should have been able to trust – your family or friends.

It is hard to go against the feeling of loyalty to your family. It is hard to treat yourself differently than how they treated you, even if it is healthier.

But if they weren’t kind and loving to you, they were your family or friends in name only.

Your first and best obligation is to yourself. Your body and your mind are your first and truest homes.

It is time to remodel.

It is going to be messy.

It is worth it.

You are worth it.

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