Moodscope's blog



Trevor Believes in Polar Bears. Wednesday June 10, 2015

There's no shame in admitting defeat.

Admitting defeat does not mean giving up. It means you need to get clever. It means admitting you can't do it on your own and that you need help.

With my weight sitting comfortably in the "clinically obese" zone and with a blood pressure that was giving my GP a heart attack – ah, that is, giving me an imminent heart attack – it was time to do something.

So I joined a slimming club.

The problem with trying to lose weight is not learning about healthy eating. We all know about healthy eating. It's the actually eating healthily bit which was the issue.

I managed to lose ten pounds in five months. Not exactly a stellar performance.

So I admitted defeat. But I wasn't giving up. I engaged a hypnotherapist.

I discovered a few things about my brain and met Trevor.

Our brain is made up of three parts. There's the primitive Lizard part (that's Larry, who doesn't come into this), in charge of the boring but essential stuff like making sure I remember to breathe. There's Trevor, the more evolved cave-man brain, responsible for keeping me safe and there's Emma. You'll recognise Emma, she's the bit which can conceptualise the brain and then write a blog about it. Emma is my "Manager".

Now I would like to be a healthy weight, lead an active lifestyle and have a normal blood pressure. Emma is absolutely on board with this and quite frankly confused about why, when she's told me what to do, I end up raiding the biscuit barrel at midnight and drinking an entire bottle of wine in one sitting (embarrassing to admit – but true).

Emma and I had not realised that Trevor, downstairs in the security office, has been conducting a subtle sabotage.

You see Trevor is a caveman and he's refused to move with the times. Trevor believes there are polar bears and sabre tooth tigers out there and he really wants to keep me safe. Anything new is dangerous. He's also not great on delayed gratification because, for cavemen, food was scarce. And Trevor prefers me fat because he also believes in famine. The next ice age is just round the corner, and I will need all my fat reserves when it hits.

So when Emma implements a new management policy regarding salads, Trevor sends round an email (he's adopted some new things - cat memes on the internet for instance) about doughnuts. And, as he's got access to all the feel-good chemicals in my brain, he puts more emotion into the doughnuts than Emma could possibly put into her salad communication.

But I'm onto him now. I'm recognising his style. I have a big red delete key just for his emails.

So far, Emma and I are winning. The feeling of finally being in control is wonderful. Watch this space get smaller!

A Moodscope member.

Permalink  |  Blog Home


Leah Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 7:23am

Thanks for your blog. The trouble with food unlike other addictions is that we can't live without and we are surrounded by it every day.
I have found that while there is a lot of information on putting on and losing weight there is very little on keeping it off !.So I have about 10 kilos or 22 pounds or 1 stone 8 libs(think that covers everyone!) that I have lost and gained so many times in last 30 years .That means I have lost and gained about 200 kilos or 441 pounds or 31 stone 7 lbs over 30 years and luckily not all at once. I have not met Trevor or Emma , but I know sad Leah eats too much and happy Leah doesn't!! I am poster girl(ok who am I kidding!!) woman for emotional eating! All the best and I hope to see less of you , in the nicest possible way. Leah

Adam Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 7:55am

That's a great post Mary!

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 8:56am

Oh Leah - I recognise you too. I can only lose weight when I am emotionally stable (or when on the high part of my cycle). When at the low point it's absolutely impossible to do anything but survive and it's very probable that the weight will come back on in the next down. But, rather than give up and become increasingly obese, I can at least lose it now - just as you do, and then (big sigh) lose it *again* in my next "normal" and "level" phase. I'm battling on regardless. I wish you the best in your battle too.

laurens Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 9:22am

Hi Mary, I read your blog post on the train this morning and almost burst in to tears. I feel the same, I just wanted you to know how much it meant to me and that you're not alone. I've never commented on a blog post before but I just felt like I had to - thank you for sharing it, it really makes a difference.

Charlie Bransden Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 10:07am

What a lovely, entertaining, way of addressing an important subject, Brilliant. I suspect there may be many Trevors having a stiff talking to this very morning.

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 10:27am

I only eat when I'm sad, or happy, upset or angry and only ever between meals! Karen ;)
Ps...I lied a liddle...have managed to lose 1.5 stone in five weeks...just been on lovely all-inclusive holiday and to my surprise...have not put on any weight...however, I did walk n the treadmill every day as well as walking around beautiful places. It's a difficult-at-times diet (Cambridge) but it's the only one I have ever been able to follow and not cheat!

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 10:31am

Mary, you brought laughter and warmth to a chilly day, with this entertaining blog!
So many of us battle with our our weight...some of us with too much and some with not enough...but we have to be in the right frame of mind to tackle it, and most of the time we just aren't with so many other demons to take care of!
Karen x

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 11:33am

Mary, Thank you, your post was so illuminating. Trevors induce so much anxiety, none of it with a real foundation.

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 11:40am

This is one of the best things I've read in ages! My fave part: "But I'm onto him now. I'm recognising his style. I have a big red delete key just for his emails." I totally needed this, thank you! Good luck with continuing being awesome :) x

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:12pm

Thank you, Adam

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:13pm

Thank you Laurens. I want to give you a big hug. We are definitely not alone. I so appreciated your comment and am pleased to have made a difference.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:13pm

Hello Charlie, Lovely to see you here again. Thank you for your comment.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:15pm

Oh yes indeed. So very often our long term fitness takes second place to short term survival. Thank you for your comment Karen.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:16pm

Indeed. Unless we move to the Arctic circle and come across real polar bears! Not something many of us are likely to do, I feel.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 12:21pm

Thank you so much for that comment. I don't feel very awesome most of the time, but with your encouragement I'll keep on trying!

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 2:22pm

Hi Mary. Yes loved this. Especially as Ive been conciously trying to cut down on the sweet stuff lately. Not really to lose weight but to try and even out my energy levels as I suspect how I binge eat doesn't help my mood. But if anything I'm now buying treats in bulk and eating even MORE. Trevor is panicking big time it seems once he got wind of Emmas ideas! Jen x

Di Murphey Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 2:37pm

Dearest Mary-Love ~
How inspiring your post is! Thank you, from my heart. Lovingly, Di

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 5:10pm

Yes - The Trevors of this world find change terrifying and will do anything they can to sabotage things. I wish your Emma (or whoever you have in charge) the best of luck.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 5:10pm

Thank you as ever for your wonderful encouragement Di.

Anonymous Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 7:47pm

Brilliant! You get Trevor told! Now you can see it this way you have altered your attitude forever. Similarly for me and alcohol...once I saw the truth I knew how to move forward. Power to you Mary, unlock it bit by bit and Trevor can kiss your hide! ;-) love ratg x.

Victoria Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 9:18pm

You had me at "Trevor believes in polar bears". Great post! I agree, but it was the writing that I found attractive. Good job.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 11:43pm

Thank you so much Victoria. Your encouragement means a lot.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Wed, Jun 10th 2015 @ 11:43pm

:) Thanks!

You must login to leave a comment.

What is Moodscope?

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. If you’d like to receive these daily posts by email, just sign up to Moodscope now, completely free of charge.

Moodscope is an innovative way for people to treat their own low mood problems using an engaging online tool. Anyone in the world can accurately assess and track daily mood scores over a period of time. We have proved that the very act of measuring, tracking and sharing mood can actually lift it. Join now.

Blog Archive


Posts and comments on the Moodscope blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice. Moodscope makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this blog or found by following any of the links.

Moodscope will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.

We exist to help people to positively manage their moods. You can contribute by taking the test, sharing your experience on the blog or contributing funds so we can keep it free for all who need it.

Moodscope® is © Moodscope Ltd 2018. Developed from scales which are © 1988 American Psychological Association. Cannot be reproduced without express written permission of APA.