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Portion Control
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Matthew 6:34 NIV

One of my goals for 2009 is to lose weight I’ve carried for the past decade. I’ve started and stopped more times than I can remember due to lack of motivation, enthusiasm, or willpower. In order to Live Purposefully, I need to be focused and determined to win the prize–healthier lifestyle, more positive body image, and skinny jeans. 😀 I joined SparkPeople, a free online program that helps people manage their weight loss and achieve their goals.

I fixed lunch yesterday, ate it, tracked my foods in the Nutrition Tracker, but did not feel satisfied. I wanted a low-fat, lower calorie snack that wouldn’t mess up my allowable calories, so I grabbed a bag of Bold & Spicy Chex Mix. This treat would satisfy the salt, crunch, & carb craving my body was having. Chex Mix is lower in fat and calories than potato chips, but it tastes even better. I measured out the portion into a small bowl and sat down to eat while I checked e-mails on the computer.

Let me preface this by saying I love love love Chex Mix. When I wasn’t watching my weight, I wouldn’t grab a bowl and measure a portion. I’d take the bag with me and eat mindlessly until that craving passed or the bag was empty. Chex Mix and snacks like that are my biggest weakness…yes, even more than chocolate, so I really had to resist temptation.

When I ate the Chex Mix, I put one piece in my mouth at a time, savored the flavor, the texture, and crunch. Focusing on what I was eating helped me to really enjoy the small amount. I was disappointed when the last bit of cereal was gone, but I felt a sense of accomplishment because I resisted the temptation to go back for seconds. This may not seem significant to other people, but it was a gold star moment for me. In order for this weight loss program to be successful, I need to focus on the moment and not the long road ahead.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized portion control isn’t limited to the foods we eat. We need to exercise portion control in all areas of our lives, whether it be the TV, a hobby we do to pass the time, playing things like video games.

Portion control can relate to my writing, as well. I’m revising my novel and plan to submit it for publication. However, I don’t have the luxury of spending all day on the novel because I have a full-time job that requires my attention. So, when I sit down to write with a specified amount of time alloted for a particular scene or chapter, I need to savor that time and make each word count.

As with losing weight, getting published won’t happen overnight. It’s a long process, but if I stay focused on the task for today, I can achieve a small goal that will help obtain the overall goal of publication. Tomorrow will come soon enough and present its own challenges.

Lisa Jordan

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