The “Game Changer”

Have you ever had an event in your life that was truly a “game changer“? Something that, maybe not at the time but later down the road, proved to forever alter everything you have done and will do? I have had several..the night in a small pop-up camper on Lake Murray that I took a deep breath and finally said yes (almost exactly 37 years ago)..the cold snow flurry day I stood in the back doorway of an attorney’s office and watched my new son enter the room in the arms of a stranger (he’s adopted)..entering a darkened hallway of my dear friend’s home and seeing a car seat sitting in the floor with the sweetest face sleeping (he’s adopted too).  Those were life defining moments for me. Moments that changed me forever!

Twenty years had passed since I sat down on the floor beside that car seat, tears of joy slowly falling, knowing this precious child had been given to me by my God. And twenty years since I can say any event has been a ‘changer’. Few events have a profound impact on you and they are divided by a million moments of ordinary. But a million moments have event has taken that has and will change me forever.

The summer of 2010 I began to realize I could no longer stay the way I was. My health was deteriorating, my enthusiasm for ‘doing’ was done…I had been altered by years of weight gain. Stripped of ‘caring’ by habits that eat up who we are. I began to think about how I was going to lose this weight and most of all “How was I ever going to keep it off?” Losing had never been the real issue..I had done that many times (really hundreds). But not one time—NOT ONE— had I kept it off. And those of you who have had the same experience know I would usually gain more back than I lost. My routine of starting a diet on Monday caused me to binge on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday before (preparing of course for the “change” that was coming). Then by Wednesday I had blown the diet only to begin again on Friday with the cycle of starting on Monday. So my ‘diet’ was a routine weight gaining regimen that I had down pat!

This time I thought about the “after” first. Never had I contemplated the ‘keeping it off’. The little bit of thinking time I spent was on which one of the latest fads would I try this time. These hours I spent on planning a successful end have proven to be the “life changer” for me! It doesn’t compare to the moment I fell head over heals in love with my son Joshua as I looked at his beautiful face for the first time.  But these moments and what followed have created a healthy “I CARE” Theresa…and that will change your life!

“Weight loss is all in your Heart”  Dr. Tran Tien Chanh



A Year Of Looking Back and Learning

A year ago I started on a journey of success. I had spent seven months losing almost 80 pounds. The “losing” trip was difficult but I knew the “keeping it off” trip would even be harder. Yesterday at an Easter gathering a dear friend asked me how long I had kept my weight off, “364 Days longer than I normally do” was my response. Every single diet I have ever done..EVERY SINGLE ONE.. I started gaining the weight back the day after I quit the diet. Whether I had been on it one week and lost three pounds or seven months and lost seventy (which BTW I have done before).

But this time I did something different, something I had never done before..when I began the losing part … I started planning for the “keeping it off” from the beginning. For once I thought through what I was going to do. I found a diet plan I could stay that made sense to me. (IDEAL PROTEIN became my new love!) I found people that had succeeded to talk to and others who genuinely cared about me succeeding. Then I did a magical step (not really but for some reason it had never crossed my mind before)…I asked the “how” question first. “HOW” was I going to keep it off?? What did this program offer me in the way of Maintenance. And I wasn’t going to wait for the answer .. I wanted to know upfront what would make it work.

For me Ideal Protein was the answer, for you it may be something else. But what I’m so excited to share is that over the last year I have been questioning every day!  ” What did I do today that made me succeed in keeping the 90 pounds (that is where I ended up) off?”  I have come up with several “realities” of maintaining good health that I want to share with you over the next few weeks and months. My hope is that it will help you too. If you are on a weight loss journey being able to keep off every single pound you lose would be a success story. Whether it is one pound or one hundred. Small wins add up to big wins. You need to live and breathe success in your health journey in order to know the ‘how’.

The picture today is one of my favorite of me and my sweet niece Kim.  This was taken at the beach the July before I started my diet on September 1, 2010. I can remember thinking I didn’t look ‘too bad’. But also remembering the horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach that said I was fooling only myself. It was about this time that I started considering what I could do to finally make this work.

Would you also share with us here on my blog? Tell us what you have done, how your diet program, exercise regimen, those that support you, books..whatever has helped you—-share with us.Together we are better.

Dominate Your Own Potential

“To be successful does not mean you have to dominate others;

It means you have to dominate your own potential.” 

 I LOVE that statement! YOU are in control of this situation..this situation of YOU. Can you manage (a better word than control) your potential if you do not know what your potential is?

Six months before he was assassinated, Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke to a group of students at Barratt Junior High School in Philadelphia on October 26, 1967 in a talk titled “What is Your Life’s Blueprint.”  In this talk he said:

“And when you discover what you will be in your life, set out to do it as if God Almighty called you at this particular moment in history to do it. Don’t just set out to do a good job. Set out to do such a good job that the living, the dead or the unborn couldn’t do it any better.

             If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, sweep streets like Beethoven composed music, sweep streets like Leontyne Price sings before the Metropolitan Opera. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well. If you can’t be a pine at the top of the hill, be a shrub in the valley. Be the best little shrub on the side of the hill.

Be a bush if you can’t be a tree. If you can’t be a highway, just be a trail. If you can’t be a sun, be a star. For it isn’t by size that you win or fail. Be the best of whatever you are.”

Sit down with yourself, make a list of what you love, what you do easily, where your knowledge lies…where your dreams seem to always take you. Many times this IS your will be right in front of you.We tend to ignore this ‘potential thing’ because it appears too easy or as wish. But most often when you allow yourself to see, its like walking into a clear meadow, a place of shining sun, fresh air and empowerment. Then embrace your potential! Breathe in the middle of it! And do what Mr. King said..Be Your Best….

What You Know Changes

“The acquisition of knowledge doesn’t mean you’re growing. 

 Growing happens when what you know changes how you live.”

We continually put new information into our heads. Knowledge is money..we learn that young as business professionals. But what do you do with that knowledge? Recently I was in a class, soaking up new information. The instructor said something profound! “When you leave here, sit down with your notes..go over each one..extract what you can USE in your life TODAY!  and…USE IT!” Now that may not sound profound to you, but it struck me right in the face. How many times had I read a new self-help book, listened to a Pod Cast, attended a seminar or workshop, taken pages of notes just to throw it in the backseat of my car (yes, it is very scary there!) and never looked at them again? I would think, “I’ll remember what I NEED to..the points that really mattered to me”. But the truth is ‘out of site-out of mind’. I honestly use only what I DO remember, which is at the most 10%.

Now you won’t ever use 100%, probably not even 50%. But taking the time to review the knowledge you do have, whether written or in your head, can lead to amazing changes in your life. And YOU taking the action is the “game changer”.

Recently a client told me she was taking advantage of every opportunity that came her way. I was very pleased with this statement because most of the time we do not even look at the doors placed before us. We are too busy watching for the door WE THINK should be there, not the ones we have actually asked for. So that was a huge stride in the right direction. But I want to propose another option…YOU CREATE the  DOOR!

Understanding the knowledge we currently hold along with our Vision and Desire will CREATE an opportunity. Completely ours..create, birth, grow, nurture and own the result. No longer sitting back waiting for others to create…we control the blessed event.

So set aside some “thinking time” to explore what you already know. Allow yourself to be the creator of the opportunity. Not only is it the most rewarding event you will have experienced in a long time, it is the most successful.

Make One Move Today

Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity? Thought maybe it was crazy but then realized it was total sanity? Didn’t make sense..but then it did? From “Uh, what is that?” to “Wow! That is amazing!”?

John Mueck is one of my favorite artists. He does the most amazing work! sculptures that so reflect real life that you sometimes cannot tell the difference, except for the fact most of them are more than life size! The exquisite detail of expression..real that just asks for a touch…

Vision is about  taking what you have not seen done and making it work. Creating productivity whether personal or business. Mueck doesn’t “rubber stamp” his work. He took ordinary human sculpture and made it amazing, Insanity to Creativity! He took the components of other mediums and placed them into his vision. You can do the same. Where do you want to end up? It doesn’t have to be a ‘finished’ product but rather a result. Take what you already have knowledge of, can you use those elements to obtain your result? Are you willing to take the risk? Try? Move forward? Not backward or maybe even worse..stand still?

Challenge yourself today. Make one move..just one..toward your vision!

What would you …

What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? We spend a tremendous amount of precious time wondering what others think about what we are doing, or not doing. Don’t get me wrong, I believe we should be stewards of our life, care what is happening and not live selfishly. But being in the “Not Push Forward Into What I Want To Do With My Life” mode just because others will think it is  stupid or crazy or it doesn’t fit into what THEY would do is one of the most stifling activities we can partake in.

So doesn’t it make sense to surround yourself with people that believe in you? Those that will hear your dreams,visions and ambitions then encourage and support you? Move the “nay sayers” to the back of the line.

When I was very in elementary school I had a Principle, Mr. Wallace, that was one of those people. Yes, I was a child, but his attitude and encouragement has stayed with me all these years. One particular time I was the ‘star’ in the school play..”Sadie Shaw From Arkansas”. The reason, I’m sure, that I had the lead was because I wasnt afraid to sing in front of anyone. But nerves kind of overtook me and I didn’t always perform the way everyone wanted me to. The more times we did the play the less I felt I could do it. On the “big” day of the play, the day we performed for the parents,  Mr. Wallace came by my room and asked me to step into the hall with him. He proceeded to give me a pep talk. I will never forget what he said to me, “Theresa, go out there and give it all you have! Make them laugh the way you do me. Be who you are. I KNOW you can do this!”  That night I did just that!

It only takes a few words to push you forward into your vision.Surround yourself with people that honestly  want you to succeed. It may only take one voice!

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment  that  something else is more important than fear.”~Ambrose  Redmoon