Release that Extra Weight

I read an article today on Facebook written by Claudia Azula Altucher. She is a yoga teacher and married to James Altucher, author, blogger, part-time comedian wannabe. The article is about how Claudia lost 30 pounds on a trip to India. (You might be thinking: dysentery, but this is not it.) If you'd like to read some of her blogs, you can do it here:

There is a lot of "yogaspeak" in her article, which is okay for me because I'm also a yoga teacher and I speak "yogaspeak" quite fluently. I have been known to say "Listen to your body" close to 600 times per class. Also I say "Don't forget to breathe" constantly. No one has ever stopped breathing in any of my classes so far, but I want to make sure there isn't a first time. Are you breathing right now? Okay. Good.

The gist of her article was, in order to drop the excess pounds, Claudia did all the things you already know you should do: eat nutritious, whole foods; cook your own meals; drink water when you feel hungry (because thirst often registers as hunger); seek out a 12-step program for support; love yourself.

But I did find one thing in particular very interesting: she told herself she needed to "release" the weight. Not "lose" the weight, but "release" it. I've never heard this term used before in place of the word "lose." But Claudia made the point that when you "lose" something, you usually go looking for it, and want to find it again.

As I started thinking about it, we often use the word "loss" to indicate something sad. A death, for example. "I'm so sorry for your loss." Loss is not usually a word that means happiness, joy, lightness, or freedom. But the word "release" can certainly mean all of those things.

You might be thinking semantics. It's just semantics. What word you use when you speak to yourself, inside your own head, is meaningless. Or even if you speak the word aloud, to your friends and family, to your co-workers and neighbors, what difference would it make?

Well, I'm not sure. But I do believe that words have power. The way we speak to ourselves is meaningful. And using a particular word, like the word "release" gives a very different feeling than using the word "lose." When I hear the word "release" I feel a lightness, like something falling away. I feel something leaving me that I am ready to let go. But when I hear the word "lose," it sounds very negative. I'm a loser. I have so much to lose.

Sometimes the smallest shifts can make a big difference. Notice your own self-talk and see if you can tweak it to include more positive words, words that allow you to make the changes you desire. Let me know if it works for you!