Motivation, as she describes it, is temporary and external:
I want to be thin for my daughter's wedding or my 20th reunion is coming up. The dieter either gives up because she realizes she won't fit the fantasy evening gown in time or she gets down to her cheerleader uniform size but eats the entire breakfast buffet.Dreams, on the other hand, are different. Dreams are a telegraph from the future self you want to become:
I've also discovered I have some dreams and that dreams had gone missing in my life in the last six years of relapse. I want to move to Seattle. I want to move to Seattle in order to hike and ski. I want to write a novel. I want to stop being the Queen of Weight Loss and Weight Gain.
They're really good dreams because they're infinite. The Cascades hold more than one hike and one novel, I hope, will lead to another. There are thousands of things to talk about besides weight.
I think that a lot of people are afraid to dream. If we're asked what we want, we often reply with things: A new car, a bigger house, more money, a better job. I think that the biggest dreams are not about stuff like that, but about who we want to be and what we want our lives to be like.
A career counselor once gave me an exercise to do that helped me think about this. You can think of this as a sort of reverse past-life regression. Imagine yourself in five years. You wake up: Where are you? Who lives with you? It's a workday. What's your morning routine? How do you get to work? What kind of place do you work? What kind of things do you do? What kind of people do you work with? What are your plans for the weekend? Move through your day and see yourself interacting with people.
How would all this change if you let go of what is "realistic" and let yourself think about what you really want? How would your ideal future self react to the reality you're in today?
Please be sure to stop by Frances's blog and read the rest for yourself. I've just hit a couple of the hightlights here. Sweet dreams!