Small victories. In life we have choices, my boss likes to say arbitrary things like “Chose the hill you want to die on”, especially when I am asking for something at work, or when he is defending our work. It implies a large battle, the opposite of a small victory. What is the difference between a major and a minor victory? Not as much as you’d think.
Weight loss for one is an ongoing string of small victories. It is fighting for each pound and recognizing EVERY choice you make impacts that line. It is knowing that you are in it for life and the race may never end, you may have to run this marathon the rest of your life.
Thinking of weightless as a large victory means you are on a diet, and chances are, you probably will gain it back.
Small victories commonly have huge payoffs, big rewards in emotional well-being and satisfaction, even if sometimes it is a little smug. Early on in my weight loss, I would turn down alcohol or cake for example, and wonder why I was better than those around me. The smugness wore off, but the feeling of pride that I was able to maintain my choices made me feel awesome.
That became my problem. For me, three years ago now, I knew that I just had to move and stop eating pizza every day. I did it for a week and it was a small victory that felt huge. I started putting together strings of these little wins and realized I was creating a big win. But then my focus became like a gambler. If you have ever gambled or been addicted to gambling big, you will know this feeling. Why bet $1.00 and win $1-$2 at a time, if I bet $50, I will win $50.
That is how my weight loss turned, I stopped cheering for my small victories like my ex-wife’s jaw dropping when she saw that I had lost over 110 pounds when we bumped into each other, or, the first day I was able to ride my road bike all the way to work and home and I didn’t feel like dying. These were huge in reward and payoff, but still little wins. I traded them in though for the big win, and I crapped out.
I LET life happen to me and allowed myself to accept loss, and chose poorly. I am fat again solely on the bad choices I have made for the last twenty months. It is time again to relish and love the small rewards, and in fact love ALL of the small things in my life, again. It is getting in the pool and swimming four laps in good form. It is finishing out a 40 minute indoor bike ride. Hell at this point, I will take showing up at the gym as a small victory.
I just told my wife I needed a small win, and she asked what kind. I hope this answered her. It is now my responsibility to go get it.