Just Breath

The Watcher is your inner-self, according to Martha Beck, PhD, author of The Four Day Win: End Your Diet War and Achieve Thinner Peace. The Watcher is not compulsive or tempted by empty calories. She does not like to be over-full and sluggish, but to always be functioning at a regulated pace. By nature, she eats to fuel and oil the machine that is your body. She is observant and calm, contemplative and wise.
If only she spoke up more often right? It's not that easy, but it can be. All you have to do is take time to listen. Something that most of us forget to do in our busy lives is to take time for ourselves and just breath.

Yes, I'm talking about meditation.

Meditation can be an intimidting concept for some. Pictures of uber-disciplined bald men in robes sitting silently for days on end flash into our minds. Well, no shaving cream required, just take five little minutes to sit quietly and focus on your breath. Inhale. Exhale. You can focus on those two words and keep bringing your thoughts back to them when your mind starts to wonder. Eventually you can just focus on your breath without the words, but it's good to start with that as a guideline.

Meditating for just five minutes per day will benefit more that one area of your life. Meditation is all about self control. Continuously bringing your mind back to your breath trains your brain to stay focused on a task and not give into impulsiveness. If you have an itch while meditating, try to ignore it and bring your focus back to your breath. It takes some discipline, I find myself stopping my hand just before scratching that itch on my nose some days. According to Dr. Beck, while listening and observing your breath you become one with the Watcher. The inner you that wants only the best for yourself in life, in love, in hapiness, and in health. You become the Watcher.

How does this translate into daily life? Imagine you are faced with a box of donuts as soon as you walk into work Monday morning. Your thin and peppy coworker says, "Happy Monday - have a donut!". Because you've been practicing meditation, you now have the self control not only to refrain from knocking said coworker into the sharp corner of the photocopier "accidentally", but you will also be able to take a breath and let the Watcher take over. She will not be interested in the high sugar, high calorie donuts because they will do nothing for her except throw her systems out of whack and blood-sugar through the roof. Instead you smile politely and say, "No thanks, I just had breakfast." Then go to your desk and reward yourself, not with food, but with self praise or something non-food related. Reward is important, pat the Watcher and yourself on the back for a job well done.

Although I chose to focus on the interesting aspect of meditation and inner-self, the main philosophy behind The Four Day Win is to make small changes and stick with them for four days. Saying I won't eat chocolate for four days is a lot easier to stick to then saying I won't eat chocolate ever again as long as I live. Small wins create a momentum of success that keeps you feeling enthusiastic and encouraged to continue on with the changes you are making in your lifestyle. Try meditating for the next four days and see how you feel. Four days doesn't sound very hard to commit to does it?

Good luck out there,

This is too cute not to add:

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