The Power of Imperfection

As I have shared before, one of the best parts of this journey that I’ve been on for the past couple of years is that I get to meet people I would have otherwise never had the privilege of crossing paths with. I continue to be humbled that people reach out to me with their stories, problems and successes! I truly feel for them at their struggles and I rejoice with them at their victories too. This has been one of the neatest, and yet most unexpected, parts of all that I’ve been through.

This week I received a message from a woman (I’ll call her Patty—but that’s not her real name) who had a particular struggle that I thought would be perfect to address through my blog, because I fear that it’s an issue many people also struggle with.
In her message Patty shared that she is a fitness trainer. But that she has another 20 pounds that she feels she needs to lose before reaching her goal. She explained that each day she asks for God’s help but continues to feel frustrated and ends up overeating “everything in sight” to sooth her discontent. Not only does she feel she’s letting her client’s down, but she feels she is letting God down.
One particular line in her message really struck me: “Food fills me…and when I don’t have the food I crave I feel so empty inside.”
I could relate to many of the things Patty shared with me. She asked specifically for my advice. And although I am the first to tell people that I am not a nutritionist, personal trainer, or psychiatrist, I do have some opinions that I shared with Patty and I will now share with you.
The first thing I wanted to express to her—strongly, because I feel so passionate about this—is that she is NOT letting God down because of the extra 20 pounds she’s carrying around. He is not mad at her—He is madly in love with her! I really want Patty to believe that in her heart more than in just her head. And I want those of you reading to believe that too! Because it’s so true.
If Patty can really embrace that as a reality, it may very well be the key to everything else.
Secondly, she mentioned using food to sooth her spirits and fill her emptiness inside. To that comment I say, figure out what your greatest (food) weakness is. And then get it the heck out of your house! If you are eating everything in sight by the end of the day, then get rid of the temptations. If they aren’t around you can’t eat them. Replace them with good things. Safe choices like fruits and vegetables…that way if you do gobble it all up…it will be good things.
Since Patty specifically mentioned her connection with God, I suggested that she ask Him to reveal “what you are truly hungry for.” It sounds like there’s something deeper there than I am not qualified to help her with. As a fitness instructor, she knows that the only way to lose weight is to burn more calories than you consume. I know personally, I have to shake up my routine sometimes to get my body out of a rut. I’ve said this before, but on The Biggest Loser we sometimes increased caloric intake to stimulate our metabolism and then went back to a reasonable amount just to keep our bodies working.
One of the things that I most wanted to stress to Patty was that she can still be an inspiration to the people she instructs, even with 20 pounds to lose.
We don’t have to be perfect (we will never be) to be effective in helping people. In fact, sometimes it’s through our failures that we are the most authentic and therefore can help others the most. I still have my own struggles and some days I succeed and some days I fail. But the important part is to not stop trying. And not stop working at it.
Dr. Harriet Braiker has a quote that I find inspiring. She says, “Striving for excellence motivates you; striving for perfection is demoralizing.” So I encourage Patty and all of you reading (as well as myself) to strive for excellence in all that we do. Perfection is not attainable, nor should it be aspired to. After all, if it was, God would have never invented erasers.

About Julie Hadden

I'm Julie Hadden and for the past few years I've been on quite journey. My experience on Season 4 of "The Biggest Loser" resulted in a total transfomation in my life. What started out being about what I could "lose" turned more into what I "gained." God revealed great truths to me about the infinite WORTH we all possess in His eyes and I'm passionate about sharing what I learned through this process. View all posts by Julie Hadden

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