Yesterday, I was going through some notes, emails and assorted clippings and came across a piece that I had clipped from a newspaper when I was struggling with quitting smoking. I so wanted to eliminate that habit from my life and was successful (for 25 years to date). The piece has appeared many times, and I am certain you have read it before. Most writings founded in truth, when revisited, reveal something new to me. This one is no exception. I’m not saying that you have any habits you are needing to change, but know I do. This is from a piece by Portia Nelson entitled “Autobiography in Five Short Chapters.”
“Chapter 1. I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. I am lost. I am helpless. It isn’t my fault. It takes forever to find a way out.
Chapter 2. I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don’t see it. I fall in again. I can’t believe I am in the same place, but it isn’t my fault. It still takes a long time to get out.
Chapter 3. I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it is there. I still fall in. It’s a habit. My eyes are open. I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately.
Chapter 4. I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it.
Chapter 5. I walk down another street.”
When I read that so many years ago, I realized and accepted that I had to take responsibility for my choices. If I continued to walk down the same street, falling into the same deep hole, I could not blame it on others or on circumstances beyond my control. The only way to avoid falling into the hole was to take the responsibility to walk down a different street. Breaking habits can be difficult, yet in truth, 90 percent of those who fail are not actually defeated. They simply “quit without trying a different street.” I am thinking about the new street I need to be walking down in my weight-loss journey. How about you?
Time to check in on your progress with TOPS Million Pounds Mission to lose ten or more pounds or be a KOPS in leeway by the end of 2017. How are you doing?