Thursday, July 28, 2011

Humor isn’t always the best medicine!

Tonight I went to the intro seminar for this Women’s Adventure Boot Camp that I’m doing in August. The first hour he talked about nutrition. I was a little concerned after reading some of the emails the trainer had sent prior to this meeting – a sample 1300-1600 calorie diet that included processed foods and low fat this or that – things I would never find myself eating anymore – and calling it healthy?  I will admit it is how I had dieted time and again for the past dozen years or so – but not at all how I eat today with whole foods, very little processed/packaged anything, tons of veggies and fruits and healthy whole grains and good for you fats in my diet. I went into the seminar though with an open mind, wanting to hear his philosophy and recommendations.

Apparently the two women sitting behind me had no such plan! Almost everything the trainer said was followed by whispered quips, criticism and commentary between them. Not exactly the best way to start a program that is intended to help you make positive changes in your diet and your body. He had a lot of great information to share, and I’ll even say I’d agree with 90% of what he said (minus his recommendations of casein and whey proteins, soy products and promoting Isogenix supplements and meal replacements!). While his emailed materials had me a little concerned, in person he promoted eating whole foods, eating organic, talked about healthy fats/omega 3s, eating 3 meals plus snacks, the glycemic index, etc. and really seemed to know what he was talking about. Anyway, you know how something comes to your mind and you think about exactly what you’d LOVE to say to someone but you’re too polite to do so? Well I held my tongue (although I DID turn around and look at them which at least got them to be quiet for awhile). Instead, I’ll tell you what I would have said to them: “You’re already sabotaging your success by ridiculing what the trainer is saying instead of having an open mind to consider that he might have a lot of experience and knowledge you can learn from. Do yourself a favor and have an open mind, you might just find something that will spark your success.”  I really mean it coming from a place of having been there before. It’s so easy to use humor and camraderie to make light of something, thereby giving you permission to not take it seriously or work at it – lowering your own expectations as well as trivializing those others may have for you. And so they’ve already failed before they’ve begun.

I think using humor in this way is actually something we learn to do at a young age. It’s a method some use to ‘make’ others like us. My sister in law and I were just discussing it when I was in Florida last week, because she finds my niece Avery doing this. She will do something silly – whether making a funny face, saying or doing something – thinking it will make other kids laugh and they’ll like her. She’s only 5!

So, the 40 something year old women behind me have probably had years of practice in using humor to bond with one another, even to their own detriment. I just wish more women could learn that instead by being more open to the possibilities, they could ‘bond’ based on a shared goal and interest and cheer one another on to reach it instead. That IS what I thought this boot camp’s attitude was supposed to be – so I sure hope I find more like-minded women there who are open for a new experience like I am!

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