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The Importance of Happiness

Today’s blog comes to you from Karen Tinlin, a TOPS board member. 

woman embracing happiness


As I write down my thoughts this morning, I’m reveling in the joy of being both at the top of my KOPS limit and content at the same time! 

It wasn’t always like this. 

I’ve struggled with weight regain most of my life, and it pulled me down so emotionally that it became a vicious cycle: Happy when the scale showed a loss, and depressed when it was a gain. 

And the depression led to poor choices and yet another gain. 

It took overcoming and breaking this connection between my weight and my level of happiness to finally lose weight on a more sustained level. I was reinstated as a KOPS in 2019, and since then, there have been difficult days in my life that made me sad, but I don’t allow sadness to set in because of my weight.  

That’s not to say that I don’t react to the gain. 

I step back and try to figure out where it went wrong. I don’t like being at the top of my goal instead of at the bottom, which is definitely a safer place to be, especially at times like holidays and special occasions. Because of that, I continue to work toward that sweet spot, where weigh-ins aren’t stressful. Right now, I’m working on coming back from an upward climb — but in a slow and sensible way. 

I accept responsibility for being in this situation and I will work to make the best of it.    

What I’ve learned on my TOPS journey is that by being true to myself and finding peace with my own body, I am more successful this time at keeping my weight down. I prioritize my own happiness by being kind to myself as well as to others. 

I read somewhere once that it was vital to practice “self-kindness.” 

I found that an interesting way of describing it, and very revealing about what I was not doing. I needed to find that perfect balance between spending time caring for others as well as time caring for myself

I give myself permission to indulge in the pleasure of my favorite foods while still maintaining the everyday sensible way of eating. It goes wrong when the indulgence overtakes the sensible. 

That can be turned around, and now I do that in a more timely way than I ever did before. 

I know I’m able to do this because I am content with my own body and with who I am.  Happiness is a choice and I intentionally choose it every day. 

Take joy in the wonder of life; don’t seek happiness through other people or possessions; depend on yourself; enjoy your own company; live in peace with your own body — and be happy! 

Karen Tinlin 

TOPS Board member 

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