A client once said to me, “I’m not strong enough yet,” and it made me wonder, when will she be strong enough?
What will be the deciding factor?
The truth is, being strong enough is available to you right now if you want it.
The amount of mental strength you have is really your opinion. Saying you’re weak is your opinion.
It all depends on what you’re focusing on.
Too many times I’ve heard people say things like, “I was doing well for 2 weeks and then I binged. I’m so weak.”
But um, can we talk about those 2 weeks? Don’t they matter at all? That was 14 days that they didn’t give in to their urge to binge and only 1 day that they did.
14:1, sounds like a good ratio to me!
For 2 weeks they believed they were strong and on that one day they thought they were weak.
What qualifies them as being weak? Because they said yes when they really wanted to say no on one day?
That’s all it really is.
The problem here is how they think about what they’ve done.
Either they’re weak because they binged or they’re strong because they were able to not do it for 2 whole weeks.
Depending on which you choose for yourself, this is how it’s going to go:
You binge, you think you’re weak, you feel weak, and you continue to binge.
You binge, you think you’re strong for not having binged for 2 weeks, you feel strong, and then you go for another 2 weeks or more.
Maybe it’s not even 2 weeks, maybe it’s just a day, or an hour!
Any time can be a time to believe that you are strong, especially literally any time you’re not binge eating.
Now, let’s just say you’re reading this and thinking, “Yeah, I get it, but really, I’m too weak.”
I gotcha. It’s not easy to jump from believing you’re weak to believing you’re strong.
So how do you get from one to the other?
Practice telling yourself that you are strong.
Practice not eating when you aren’t hungry.
Practice not giving in for 10 minutes when you feel an urge to binge. If you end up giving in after those 10 minutes, it’s ok. You still did 10.
Then practice for 15 minutes. Then 20 when you get good at 15.
Keep this up and you’ll get to a day, then a week, then a month, and then forever.
I have no doubt you can get stronger at this. All you have to do is practice.
But honestly, you don’t even have to actively do anything differently to consider yourself strong. You just need to change how you think about yourself and doing that will put you on the path to changing your behavior.
Believe before you can achieve.
Decide you’re strong. Look for evidence to prove it. Don’t let one moment when you said “yes” instead of “no” define you.