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Why Now? What Now?

Sunday, July 26, 2020

So here I am back on SP. I know what you're thinking (I can read women's minds). You're thinking;
- "He can't really read minds can he?"
- "He's made like a million 'I'm back' blogs. What will be different this time!?"
- "Geeez, since he's back I should TOTALLY set him up with my eligible single female relative who's roughly his age!!!"
- "Wow, the dog getting barked at doesn't seem too scared!!!!!

But most likely what you're thinking, but are too afraid to admit is....

"Why now?" Fair question. Over the last 8 years, there have been two things made clear.
1) I go on for about a month or two and then disappear for 6-18 months (lather, rinse repeat)
2) When I'm on, I don't really seem to get this site.

Right now, I am cleaning up my life. The last 6 years have been rocky and I've felt like I've been swimming against a riptide with two cramped legs and a broken arm.

The last 2-3 years have involved making peace with a lot of things/people in my life that may or may not be helpful/toxic. Hands were ultimately metaphorically shaken whether they were followed by an embrace of re-engagement or well wishes for a future of paths likely never to cross again.

Best friends, relatives, affiliations, religion...you name it. I've made the best effort to make it work. This often with having to back up and ask basic questions of what and why. In 2010/2011, something/one in my life that was awkward and quirky was acceptable (even if I didn't understand why it/they was there). Some relationships/memberships/affi
liations/self-identifications made the cut as still being worth having. Others, not so much.

So what about SparkPeople? When I was most active in 2009-2011, I was making progress. I didn't really follow a lot of the structured advice (it was never really talked about by anyone). I tried, but never really got footing on that. When I was riding high and losing weight, I felt like I was making a difference. I felt encouraged. When not though...... I felt kind of lost.

Always have wondered if I'm missing a glaringly obvious point/precept.

When things aren't going well, are there questions I'm supposed to ask? What happens when I'm not losing weight? What is the support I am supposed to give or expect to receive? Just being honest here, it's been 10 years and I feel like the High School Senior who still hasn't found his first 10th grade classroom.

As with much else in my life, I'm looking for peace with SP and the community. Whether that's a re-engagement that leads to a fruitful and powerful support system that I can give to and/or receive from,,,,,

,,,,,or a final quiet departure with occasional check-ins on/with friends.

I really don't know. I really don't.

I'm trying something health related that I can blog about and try to engage others about. Is that what I'm supposed to do (or is there a path that I am supposed to follow here)? Is there something that I'm missing? Am I overthinking this?

What now? I don't know.

Advice is greatly appreciated. Will check both SparkMail and page/blog comments.

- TD Out!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • PICKIE98
    The essence of this site is flexibility and self-health.
    SparkGuy started it when he was not sure what he was going to do completely, but he knew his experience might help others to realize what they wanted/needed and how they could achieve it.
    Every person is different and each situation moves along in life as we live it.

    You have used lots of the tools here if you look back on it. You blogged, prepped food, had self-awareness of your eating habits, and made a regular pattern to exercise and carb awareness.
    You reached out and commented on blogs and spark pages. THAT is part of what is here for all of us.

    When you get it, you GET it. You have hung in here, regardless of how often you came back, you are always a Sparker!

    There are literally hundreds of workout vids here, that are simple and use in-home items as well as gym workouts. A challenge makes accountability, which a is a major key to success. Personal trainers are totally reliant on accountability. Some of choose not to have a personal trainer, but use other Sparkers for that reason.
    Dig further into this site for what YOU need, exercise, food, ego-boosting, clothing, vacations, whatever. Everybody here is doing just that.
    Ask anybody,, we are all searching and learning.. sharing victories and recipes, pits and downfalls. We also share solutions..
    Ask anybody anything. If they do not know, they can tell you who might be able to answer your question.

    60 days ago
    I mostly use this site for the calorie tracker.
    60 days ago
    Hi there. Good to see you again. I tend to meander closer and further away from SP depending what else Is going on in my life. When I’m busier, I log on and do the minimum, with a few posts, when I have more time I do much more, including regular blogs. The rest of the time it’s something in between...
    60 days ago
  • _CYNDY55_
    emoticon Welcome back TD!
    Thanks for sharing how you feel. And what is new with you. I've quit SP a few times. Was a leader for awhile too. I've always come back. I read the shares and post where I feel comfortable. Sometimes when I have a question about health or fitness. I browse around the site. I usually find an answer, Many Intelligent Sparkies!
    Your Blog Posts are Great to read! BTW,,
    I don't chat with someone everyday on here. I could do that if I wanted to. I hope you find what you are looking for. Take Care Trent! emoticon emoticon

    60 days ago
    Welcome back, TD!
    You have gotten some good advice here already.
    Yes, maybe overthinking a tad but I admire your honesty.
    My two cents worth are there is no right or wrong to it.
    There surely is a lot to do on spark but you don’t have to do it all.
    Just do the parts that are fun and interesting and meaningful for you.
    And just let the rest of it go.
    I have never dropped out completely but I do modify frequently depending on my needs and interests.
    I feel like SP is a healthy living site, not just weight loss site so, if I am not losing weight, at least I am healthier.
    You got this!
    60 days ago
    Hey Trent, I understand where you are coming from. Since you are starting over again, which I've done numerous times myself, I would start with tracking your food and exercise. When I first joined SP, i came here for the tools (food tracking, exercise tracking along with the articles). They've changed SP quite a bit since I first joined. They have exercise videos and all kinds of other resources you can use. You also could personalize your page more than you can now. Originally, I didn't want to get to know other people. I just wanted to use the tools and get off. Then people would leave messages on my page encouraging me. Finally, I decided to join some teams and got to know more people. I found that I really enjoyed interacting with others. I enjoyed giving and receiving encouragement/support. Then I began to join challenges and that helped me a lot. There are so many groups that have challenges. It all depends on you and your preferences. The team I help lead, Aspire & Inspire team, has monthly challenges. Each month is a different challenge and for August or challenge is smart snacking. The challenge for July was 20 minute meals (focusing on slowing down while eating and enjoying each bite). This helps you to not overeat and to realize when you are full. There are other teams like the 5% Challenge team, The Biggest Loser Challenge team, SP has different ones too. If you click on challenges there are SP Challenges and Calendar Challenges. Writing blogs helps too but you need to reciprocate it often. You can't just write a blog expect people to respond to it but then never respond to their blogs. You don't have to respond to every blog but you should do it often. Interacting with others really helped me. I never sugar coat things in my blogs. I'm truthful and that helps me to receive encouragement when I'm doing well or when I'm not. I really enjoy the support of my Spark Friends. Everyone or almost everyone has started, stopped and restarted many times.

    I hope what I said helps. emoticon
    60 days ago
  • 1BLAZER282005
    Hey Trent, I'm new to Spark 7mos. My expectations of the site were tracking food but I enjoy the interaction of observing others and how they address weight issues. I'm a motivator at heart so promoting positivity is the goal for me on this site.
    61 days ago
    Hi Trent. You will find the path that works for you, either on your own, or by reading success stories of others. One size (technique) does not fit all. A routine and schedule, including logging into SP daily, tracking food and exercise are great places to start. I even have a small binder where I track those same things on a spreadsheet - more visual. There are three sections: nutrition, exercise, and intermittent fasting. 100 days have flown by with great success (40 lbs) for me. When I stop checking in and being accountable, I totally fall off every wagon. I joined SP in 2009. I, like you, couldn’t stay the course. I’m back, like you, but something has just clicked. Joining teams and making SP friends goes a long way.

    By the way, you have great writing skills. People would enjoy reading your blog posts. Go for it!
    61 days ago
    Wow. Lots of thoughts you are having. And asking for advice you are. ( Notice the Yoda cadence to match the topic. ) It's ok that you aren't sure what you want or what to do with Spark People right now. Into place it will fall when right the time is. It sounds like you've had lots of time & effort spent on other things. Breathe in & Breathe out. Seriously, good luck with everything!
    61 days ago
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