Tag Archives: habits

3, 2, 1, begin … (Don’t worry. It’s not a diet.)

It’s a discussion group about what causes people to need to go on diets. And about a book, if you care to read it.

Today (or tomorrow, if you are into procrastination. Which is not always a bad thing. See note three paragraphs down), we will start reading The Whole Clove Diet. Next Friday, January 9, we will launch our discussion of the first 100 pages of the novel (well, let’s say we’ll discuss what happens up to the end of chapter 11 on page 94, since page 100 is in the middle of a chapter).

If you don’t feel like buying the book, but still want to join in, you can read the first 64 pages right here, so you’ll know a bit about Rita and her situation.

I haven’t read the novel since it was published, and it would be embarrassing not to remember some event in my own book. So I’ll read the first eleven chapters this week too, in case anyone wants to comment on anything specific. You’re welcome to write a comment or ask a question before next Friday if you want to: that’s just a deadline of a sort.

In the meantime, you might be interested in a post about resolutions as a procrastination strategy that I wrote today on one of my other blog sites. In Defense of Procrastination is the blog for a book I’m writing about all the positive aspects to procrastination there are, along with the negative ones, and why we should try not to feel so guilty when we procrastinate sometimes. Today’s entry covers one benefit that I hadn’t thought of before, and the idea comes thanks to an interesting guy named Timothy Pychyl, who is a psychology prof at Carleton. He points out that when we make a resolution to do something (or stop doing something) at a certain point in the future, we feel good about ourselves because we are going to do (or stop doing) that thing. So we get a positive feeling even though we haven’t actually done the thing or made the change yet. We get to have our cake and eat it too, as it were.

Resolutions are a big part of life for those of us who are addicted to food and other things. As Rita realizes, our thoughts are always about what we are going to do next Monday, or the first day of next month, or on New Year’s Day. Or tomorrow.

I remember reading somewhere that we could start a new way of being in the world at ANY moment –  right now, for example. That blew me away. I had always figured you had to start a new way of living first thing in the morning. (In truth, I found it a bit scary to think that I could start a new routine right now. Not sure why.)

Then, after years and years of New Year’s Resolutions during which I broke cigarettes in half and flushed them down the toilet at midnights (or at least before I went to bed) and dumped half bottles of wine down the sink more often than I want to think about, I finally faced my alcohol addiction a third of the way through an October, and quit smoking half way through a June. So much for Mondays and firsts of the month and New Year’s Days!

Admin stuff

I’m posting a new Page (see tab above header) with the guidelines to our book club on it, in case anyone wants to refer to them.

I’m delighted at how many people have visited this blog in the past week or so, and I hope you are a return visitor – or will be one. I’m also happy that a fellow struggler has left a comment on the post that went up yesterday. We are not alone! I invite you to join in…

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Filed under Addiction, Dieting, Eating Disorders, Habits, health, Reading Group, The Whole Clove Diet: A Novel, Weight loss

Breaking Habits

I came across this article the other day, which is a review of a new book about habits and how to break them by Charles Duhigg.

The book is called The Power of Habit, and the issues the author explores are applicable to almost everything we do on a regular basis in our daily lives – from driving to work to going for a drink at the end of the week. Those who are fighting to change personal habits in such areas as drinking, eating and smoking will be familiar with the triggers (or “cues,” as Duhigg calls them), and what they set off in terms of behavior and rewards. It looks as though Duhigg has some strategies for breaking the “habit loop” that I will be interested in testing on a few bad habits of my own.

In Whole Clove news…

The paperback version of The Whole Clove Diet is resoundingly thumping my first novel in the Amazon best-seller ranks! TWCD is at #1,055,369 and The Woman Upstairs is at #3,852,255.

The Woman Upstairs is a story about a young woman, Diana Guthrie, who must go home and confront her past when she learns that her mother — to whom she has not spoken in several years — is dying. It won the Writers Guild of Alberta award for excellence in Writing, Novel Category way back in 1988.

As a promotion for the impending release of the Kindle version of The Whole Clove Diet, I’ve made Kindle version of The Woman Upstairs  available at no charge for four days only.

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Filed under Habits, The Whole Clove Diet: A Novel