As we head toward a new year, when people often work toward new beginnings, I want to share with you a message I received from a woman named Kim. Kim writes: I have read, and thought I have digested, Bright Line Eating. But how do I commit? I feel like I’ve had 100 “day ones,” literally. I know what to do. BLE teaches me what to do. But I can’t make it stick. What are some suggestions for getting it done?
I’ve had hundreds of day ones. I started my food journey when I was 21 years old, a year clean and sober. I began a twelve-step program to address all the food I was eating, and that started eight and half years of repeated day ones. Later, there were more twelve-step programs and more day ones.
And then I got Bright. I’ve been immaculately Bright for a year and a half now. (My longest consecutive stretch in the past was many more years than that.) What I have now is priceless: a healthy strong body and a peaceful mind. Extremely low levels of food chatter or scale chatter, and tons of happiness and well-being. My food recovery is a blessing in every area of my life. But all that came at a cost. It’s taken me a lot of research, and a lot of suffering, to get here.
We each have our own journey. Everyone in Bright Line Eating has come to it knowing that they give up something to get Bright. I don’t have to tell you that—especially at this time of year, when it means giving up holiday food and alcohol. But the trade is SO worth it.
Not everyone has gotten through all the pain by the time they get here. They may come to Bright Line Eating and still have a painful journey ahead of them, to get them to the place where they are convinced that it is worth it to put their food addiction in remission.
So I have some suggestions for Kim.
First, realize that nothing may be out of place. You may be on your path, doing your research and work while you’re in the program. Some people get here, and they’re ready to go. Others need to work at it before they’re convinced it’s the right path.
Look at each of your Day Ones as getting you closer to your goal. There’s a study that was done that showed that the average smoker tried to quit thirty times before it stuck. You can think of the first 29 times as failures—or you can say those failures brought them closer to the place where they could quit. Each of your “day ones” may be getting you closer to where you need to be.
Next, when I was in Australia, I did something different that “stuck.” My life was out of whack because I was bingeing my brains out and having day one after day one and I hired a life coach. At our first session, he gave me some homework and I said I couldn’t do it because I was doing pretty much nothing but binging and recovering from binging. He told me that my first assignment, then, was to get my food sorted out. Something about him holding me accountable, in addition to my sponsor, that extra layer of accountability, worked. So I would ask you: what extra support or accountability can you give yourself?
Another thing that strikes me is that your behavior seems to indicate a diet mentality. Have you truly admitted that it’s a food addiction issue or are you denying that in some way?
Addiction doesn’t like being treated. So my question is: have you just been doing a diet, rather than committing to the program? Maybe these are not really “day ones.” In other words, perhaps you need to redefine what it means to try Bright Line Eating. Have you truly committed? Did you back off of other commitments, so you could focus on the Boot Camp? Did you get a buddy? Did you call in for coaching? Perhaps you need to admit that you have a food addiction that is stronger than your attempts to handle it.
And here’s another thing I’m curious about: are there parts of you that haven’t wanted this? That are pushing back on it? If so, that’s okay. In Boot Camp 2.0, we make available to you the Break Through Your Resistance Roadmap, which gives you tools to address the parts of you that are resistant to treatment.
This is not a diet, Kim. It’s a program of recovery. It’s a new way of life. So have you really tried? How many true day ones have you really had?
May every day one be put to good use. And every break turn into a breakthrough. I would love to offer to you what I have now, which is so precious. But before you accept it, know that it comes with a lot of pain, a lot of research, and a lot of day ones before you surrender to what works. You’re not alone. This is just what the path looks like.
On January 1, Boot Camp starts. Carve out space for it. Come on in. I promise it will be worth it.