The Big Lie: When-Then

By Michelle May, M.D.

What are you waiting for?Perhaps you’ve told yourself some version of this popular lie: When (something happens), then (I’ll do, feel, or be something different). Here are just a few examples, though you probably have some of your own – please share them in the comments section below!

  • When I lose weight, then I’ll be happy.
  • When my kids start school, then I’ll start exercising.
  • When my kids are in college, then I’ll make more time for friends.
  • When I retire, then I’ll travel.
  • And my personal favorite: When I finish this project, then I’ll finally be caught up and I can relax!

Here at Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Programs and Training we often encounter this When/Then lie in this form: When I’m done with this diet, then I’ll figure out what this mindful eating thing is all about.

The problem is that often the when never arrives and/or the then never happens. In the meantime we’re postponing our lives and missing other possibilities. If and when when comes, we simply replace it with another when. Day by day, promise by promise, our lives slip away.

Don’t check your body, mind, or spirit at the door while you wait for the elusive when/then. What are you waiting for? Your life is this present moment and the time is now!


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