Tuesday, October 30, 2012

What If You Were Already Perfect?

"Be the change you want to see."

When I was attending the American Academy of Dramatic Arts back in the late 1980s, Jackie Cowgills give our Acting I class this motto,

"See, Do, Be."

As actor, your job is to move, speak, and behave in such a way that the audience believes that you're someone else: usually someone more alluring and compelling than yourself.  Nobody pays actors to watch them go shopping, or fight with their families.  That's what the Kardashians are for.  But I digress.

The idea behind "See, Do, Be"  is to imagine and visualize how your  character is different than you, do the actions you think your character would do, and then be the character based upon your actions.
In my case, I used to spend a lot of time thinking about how my character would look to an audience.  This is essentially acting from the ego, and it's very common because let's face it, most of us want to look good in front of people.  Thinking about how you look is not the way to artistry, though.  Truly behaving as the character is.  Think of how our great actors of today like Daniel Day Lewis and Meryl Streep surrender themselves to a role and you'll understand what I mean.

So yesterday I was mentally beating myself up again for not measuring up to the physical standard I set for myself as a trainer.  Same old song and dance, right?  Why can't I eat less?  Why can't I eat more?  Why are my thighs like this?  Ugh, it's getting to be such a bore to be inside my head.

Then I had an idea.  The nice voice in my head, (which is akin to the hope that was left in Pandora's box after all the world's evils flew out), asked me this question,

"What if you were already perfect?  What would you do?"

And for once I surrendered to that idea for an entire day.  I did desk work, dressed, cooked, worked, and shopped with the idea in my mind that I was already living in the ideal body for me: a body that had absolutely nothing wrong with it or to be ashamed of.  What a feeling of relief!  Everything was easier- especially getting dressed to shop and go teach.  I simply asked, "What would I like to wear, not "What will make my legs look smaller?"

The very best thing happened at the grocery store.  I had listened to a podcast that day given by someone I admire who had lost a whole bunch of weight.  You may be familiar with Jimmy Moore of the Livin' La Vida Low Carb show.  He spoke about how he has some very high quality dark chocolate every day.  I thought, "If he can do it, so can I," so I went to the display of good chocolate at Safeway.  As I stood in front of the %72 cacao chocolate bars I thought to myself, "What would you do if you were already perfect?"  My answer was that I would listen to my appetite to check if I really wanted a chocolate bar.  And I didn't.  I put the chocolate bar back and walked away.

I had eaten the lunch I posted here yesterday, and I simply wasn't hungry.

So here is today's menu:


Breakfast:  Coffee with cream, 2 eggs cooked in 1t. coconut oil, 3 strips uncured bacon, mixed vegetables cooked with 1t. pastured butter.
Snack: 1 apple
Lunch: Large mixed salad with olive oil and apple cider vinegar dressing, 1 4oz chicken thighs, 1C spinach and mushrooms.
Snack: 1 C raspberries
Dinner: 4 oz shrimp with sauteed mixed vegetables, mixed salad with dressing as above.
Evening snack after Zumba: 1 sweet potato with 2t. coconut oil and cinnamon
8 glasses of water.

I was very hungry after class last night, so I had a sweet potato, and that worked really well, so I'm going to have one again tonight.  One of the goals of this experiment in accountability is to find the right balanced eating plan for me- so adjustments are encouraged.

So finally, today: breathe, relax, imagine that you are exactly who you want and need to be, right now, and see what that belief frees you to do.