What is “Good” and “Bad” all about?

Good and BadSometimes I am “good” and sometimes I am “bad. Since, in essence, I am a pretty good person all around, it seems strange, from an intellectual perspective, that I define my goodness and badness from only one dimension: my dieting.

I’ve pondered this for many years. I am not really “bad” when I eat the wrong foods or avoid exercise like the plague. Neither am I fundamentally better just because I nibble on rice cakes for weeks on end. A while ago I determined that I wouldn’t use those terms (good and bad) to refer to my dieting choices because it had a negative impact. Unfortunately, like many of my well-meaning resolutions, this one fell by the wayside, despite all my good intentions.

Other terms to use instead:

The problem with ditching any word that is solidly enmeshed in your lexicon is that you need to replace it with something else that is equally effective. For example, most of the time I catch myself and replace “shit” with “shoot,” but in dire situations “shoot” just doesn’t cut it and “shit” pops out. So here are some alternatives I’ve tried, and the reasons that I think they just haven’t stuck:

On/off program – I picked this up from weight watchers, and it isn’t too bad. However, because I associate it with weight watchers, it doesn’t really fit unless I’m doing the whole WW thing. (Going to meetings, drinking water, etc.) Plus, there is something militaristic or institutionalized about it that makes me feel like a lemming.

(un)Successful – Even worse than good and bad if you ask me. I’m very successful, in business, in family. Only my fat ass isn’t that successful! Also, I can be making all the right choices and still not lose any weight (oh, don’t I know that one!)

Working it (or not) – It is always work. Every day is filled with thousands upon thousands of choices and you have to (1) know that you are making a choice and (2) make the right one and (3) not back-slide on your good choices. I mean, it can be exhausting! But working it is too close to “working out” and I can be doing all the food stuff and not the exercise stuff. Still, this is a better choice than most.

Clean (or sober) versus “off the wagon” – OK this one is kind of meant to be funny. Since food is my drug of choice I do often feel like an alcoholic. I’m sober today, but if I don’t watch out I’ll fall off the wagon. Probably not funny to someone battling real alcohol or drug demons, but for me this is as strong an addiction, if not as debilitating. So – not p.c. to use in mixed company, but I find it okay to use with myself.

The truth is, there is a self-judgment. When I’m good, I feel good about myself. When I’m bad, I feel badly. There is a lot of self-loathing and depression wrapped up in how well I’m doing with my weight. Which makes me wonder…

Why do I want to be thin?


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