"Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am."
Phil 4:13 (The Message)
Those who are seeking to live a health-filled life and keep a fabulously fit shape most generally think of temptation as an occasion to be snared away from their chosen path. Temptations are everywhere we turn: fast food restaurants on every corner, double size portions, birthdays and birthday cakes at work, and friends on every side encouraging us to eat what everyone else is eating. How in the world do we defeat these temptations?
Temptation is an Opportunity to do the Right Thing
Temptation is just as much an opportunity to do the right thing, as it is to do the wrong thing. Each temptation is actually a wonderful opportunity to develop character as we make the choice to choose the path that takes us toward, instead of away from, our values and our goals.
Rick Warren says that God develops the fruit of the Spirit in us by allowing us to experience circumstances in which we are tempted to express the exact opposite quality. What a way to train ourselves to think! Each time a temptation comes to overeat, we begin to think: "This is an assigned circumstance to allow me to choose and to develop self control."
Is temptation a sign of weakness? I don't think so. Martin Luther King is quoted as saying: "You cannot keep birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from building a nest in your hair." Temptation only becomes weakness if you allow it.
So How Do We Defeat Temptation?
Linda, a student in my Fabufit class, as well as an individual nutritional coaching client, explained to me that she had been on an emotional roller coaster. She was hitting a 3 pm craving temptation. She was giving in to it. By the end of the night her plan was falling apart completely. Negative thoughts were overtaking her. Temptation was defeating her. As we talked, it became apparent she needed a battle plan for this 3 o'clock temptation. As she took the little time it took to sit down and prepare herself for this daily battle, she explained to me that a little "fighting attitude" began to rise up within her. This attitude was like: "bring it on, I am ready." This one little strategy of just having her plan in place gave her the solution to this temptation.
Most of our temptations occur in a limited window of time. If we can discover what they are and when they appear, we can defeat them. Stay alert and ask of yourself:
When and where am I most tempted?
Who is with me?
What is my emotional state when I am tempted?
This requires living intentionally instead of coasting. Dr. Phil says he found that just changing his route as he entered his home after working out avoided the temptation of grazing as he went through the kitchen. It wasn't a hard change to make, but made all the difference for him.
Prepare for the Battle
Most of us are more tempted when we are tired and/or too hungry. So here again comes the need for planning and alertness. Plan to eat six small nutrient dense meals a day so that your Hunger Full Index never registers too hungry or too full. Plan as well for a brief recovery time throughout the day to regain energy and focus. Take a break away from what you are working at. In each of us there is a certain time of the day that our energy sinks most. Usually this is about 3 or 4 pm. Listen to your body and discover when this time is for you. Prepare for the battle just like a soldier.
Those following the Fabufit System do eat six small balanced meals each day and do plan a TPM time each afternoon at this time. Jack Canfield coined TPM in his book, "The Power of Focus", as Twenty Five Peaceful Minutes.
With a little practice it becomes easier and easier to defeat temptation and use it as a stepping-stone to strength.
- Identify your personal pattern of temptation.
- Take the time to put a plan in place to win the battle
- Learn to change the channel in your mind and focus on something else when temptation knocks at the door. We can defeat tempting thoughts by thinking of something better. Instructions in the book of Philippians in the Bible tell us to think on those things good, pure and lovely and of a good report.
We capture every thought and make it give up and obey Christ."
II Cor 10:5 NCV
So each temptation can become another solid stone in our character development as we use it as an occasion to do the right thing instead of the wrong thing. As we capture every thought and make it give up, our mind becomes renewed. We become transformed, instead of being conformed to this world.
I invite you to learn more about the Fabulous Circle of Health by visiting www.Fabufit.com. There is a free E-Book awaiting your there and a sample audio excerpt from my 12 Week Online or Live Teleclass Fabufit Challenge. Fabufit brings together all the elements needed to live a long, vital life. It will change your body, stimulate your mind, awaken your emotions and bless your heart.