In Support of Support
January 30, 2015
I’m a huge fan of support. The selection of “pull-in-your-tummy” and “tighten-it-tights” sort of garments found in my underwear drawer bares testament to this. When I’m exercising my sports bra is my best buddy in the world; when I want to wear a specific favourite top my “balcony bra” is an essential.. not because it brings things to the fore – but because it’s secure and well structured and gives me exactly what I need. The benefits of great support can’t be underestimated.
But when it comes to my weight loss journey and life in general, the issue of support becomes even more important. It is an essential. To know that when I’m having a tough day (when “step away from the chocolate” just doesn’t seem possible) or if things have been hard on a personal level and I’m so tired I could cry… I know that there are shoulders to cry on and people who will carry me when I don’t feel able to carry myself. When I have a small victory (actually managing not to eat the chocolate) or when I pick myself up and dust myself down, the “pats on the back” (both in the real and virtual world) make me feel that anything is possible and that other people want me to succeed as much as I want it for myself.
The forums here on WLR are a wonderful source of support. I have people who I have never met “in the real world” who I consider to be friends. People I have shared tough stuff with; people who have shared my most vulnerable moments; people who are on their own journey – making their way along the route of weight loss and through life generally. If I am faced with a weight loss query or dealing with a dilemma I can head over to the forums and send a post out to the rest of this wonderful WLR tribe and be certain that I will find the answer; learn something new; benefit from the wisdom of others; and absolutely be offered support.
“Real world” support is a wonderful thing. The power of hug can be immense. Particularly if you’re feeling down or dazed or like you’re about to “come undone”. It takes very little time; it requires no eloquence; no excessive physical exertion; but it can work miracles. If you have ever been asked the question “could you use a hug?” the chances are that you’re in a situation where people around you can see you are struggling and just want to show their support. If you have been the one asking the question – then rest assured that your support will help… even if sometimes the recipients may appear ungrateful or unwilling to accept it (and I speak from the heart on that bit… I’m the world’s worst for adopting the “it’s fine, I can manage” attitude)… but the people who really are supporting me know that this is a “reflex action” and go ahead give me their support despite (or maybe because of) my seeming ingratitude.
If you are facing a tough day… if it’s connected with your weight loss journey and you’re just in one of those places where nothing is going the way you would hope; or if it all seems like it’s too hard; or if you’re in a rut… look for support. You will always find some… and if it isn’t in the “real world” then it will definitely be here in your WLR world. Just put out a small APB and I guarantee someone will hear your message loud and clear and issue a rapid response.
Similarly if you are on the site and you see someone’s APB and can offer the www.hug or the www.virtualshouldertocryon, let me tell you that it can make such a difference. I’ve been on the receiving end of support like that and it really is difficult to convey just how much it matters; how much means and, a lot of the time, how much of a difference it can make.
WLR is a fantastic resource to help us be the size and shape we hope for and to teach us wise ways which stand us in good stead for life. But that is just the practical aspect of the site. The “emotional benefits” can’t easily be put into words; their effectiveness can be difficult to measure in any tangible way; but the impact they have on our journeys are amazing. And it doesn’t have to be time consuming or complicated. The “smiley face” icon; the “Yay”; the “thumbs up”… all very tiny ways of showing support – but each tiny strand of support goes to make a network and if the power of just one tiny piece of support can make a difference… just imagine how incredible the potential support is at WLR.
So… if you find yourself needing that shoulder to cry on – just ask. And if you see the request and know that your shoulders are available – offer them. We should all be in support of support.
Have a wonderful WLR weekend
With a Hug