Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Early this morning I received the following comment to a previous post:

I was just wondering if you could post every thing that you're doing to lose weight. I stumbled on your site, and I read it every once in a while, and I have a weight problem, not that those things relate to one another. Actually, I have made food a God. And I don't want to any more. I just don't know where to start, though. Thanks!

Here is my reply to that inquiry.


You are 99% there! You've identified the problem. You've reached a point of discontent. I have to disagree with knew exactly where to start! Here is my short story...

I grew up very undisciplined and have always struggled in some areas with personal leadership (remember that phrase - personal leadership) for as long as I can remember. Some things I have been highly disciplined - temper, alcohol - never been drunk or tried hard liquor, lust & pornography, letting bitterness set in, etc. But in the areas of spending money, time management, and diet and exercise I have always struggled. As both a kid and a young adult I always had the ability to make more money than I could spend. I was able to save when I was younger but have become progressively worse in that area. My lack of time management skills wrecked havoc on the majority of my academic career. As a kid I played four sports and even when a little more than a decade ago weighed 200lbs, had a 33" waste line and could still dunk.

Three years ago I was constantly late, constantly losing thing, and totally disorganized. I was $80,000+ in debt and was a terrible tither. I weighed 285lbs.

Here is what I did. I identified the problem. I knew it was a spiritual problem. I knew it was a sin problem. It was also a matter of poor habits, lack of skills, and overall ignorance.

I confessed to my elders, wife, and family. I cried out to God and got help.
I began seeing a specialist in the field of adult ADD at Stanford University.
I started working with a professional organizer.
I worked with an executive coach.
I started attending Debtors Anonymous.
I got myself accountability partners.
I fasted often to declare my hunger for discipline.
I prayed and begged God to remove my thorn.
I adopted a life mission and carried it (still do) in my pocket daily and read it often. (My life mission is right under my picture on this blog.

And it wasn't easy.

My wife, kids, and church played such an important role. I leaned on my faith community! One couple, Bill & Virda Stevens, played a vital role.

Within six months I had become organizationally transformed and was rare that was late or lost things. Within a year I had become debt free (except a house payment). Within 18 months I had lost 25 - 30 pounds (depending on the day and scale!)

And then I made the fatal mistake of trying to maintain.

I began to let my workspace become cluttered. I prayed less. I stopped fasting. I stopped working with my specialist, organizer, & coach. I stopped losing weight. I started to incur debt again.

And then, on March 14th of this year, I found myself in the emergency room with chest pains. It turned out to be nothing. It also turned out to be a blessing!

Kim picked me up from the hospital and I dropped her off at the house and went to a mentor of mine, Steve's house and picked up a copy of the South Beach Diet. That book has been very instrumental in helping me lose the weight. I went over three weeks without eating anything that had sugar of any kind. I lost 15lbs in the first 3 weeks. I followed the diet with a God given discipline and with the encouragement of my family and community of faith.

There was another book that played a crucial role in some of the changes I have made of late and that is The Blessed Life by Robert Morris. Not in coincidently, I have also made giant steps in the transformation of our personal finances and especially in the area tithing. Kim and I have always tithed but never like we have in the past few months. I could write so much more on that subject alone! Totally amazing!

I don’t know if this kind of self disclosure was what you are looking for or not. I do know that all change is difficult. I do know that I have plenty of more spiritual transformations still to take place in my life.

I will be praying for you (Anonymous) and am excited to hear about the changes God will be making in your life!

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