By Scott Q. Marcus

Dear Santa,

You might think I’m a little old to be crawling up on your lap; and after a bulging feast of turkey, mashed potatoes, and uncountable red and green cookies, you probably don’t want me weighing down your knee for too long. However, my inner child never grew up; he simply became wrinkled; so I still like some gift requests I have not had answered. I figure, who better than you to help?

I promise I won’t take too much time; I understand you’re busy and have a few things on your mind. If you prefer, I can email or text my list to your phone; I’m all about the convenience.

First up: I want zero-calorie, great tasting, perfectly textured comfort foods. It is way wrong that when I’m upset, everything I desire causes a weight gain. I get stressed so I eat something comforting. I get fatter - and that stresses me out even more. What’s that about? How fair is that? If you can’t deliver non-fattening comfort foods, I’ll consider the option of modified lettuce that tastes like chocolate. Just a thought...

When I look in the mirror, I want a flat profile looking back; one that doesn’t require me sucking in my stomach so deep my voice jumps two octaves. I know, I know; fifty-somethings don’t look like 18-year-olds; don’t bore me with logic. But in all fairness, I never had the flat, rock hard look as a teenager either, so I’d appreciate seeing what it feels like to have six-pack abs without having to forego the six packs - if you catch my drift.


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Please don’t misunderstand; don’t give me a gym membership or sit-up machine; those involve exertion, and who in their right mind wants to wake up Christmas morning to a present requiring sweating and groaning? Yick! I just want to go to sleep chubby, and wake up slim. You figure out how, please.

Finally, I want an unending supply of willpower. You can wrap it up in names like “self control” or “determination” if that makes it easier but I’m looking for the ability to resist temptation anytime and whenever it rears its obnoxious green head. Each occasion, I shall make the absolute perfect decision without the raucous, riotous, rambunctious, mental mêlée that takes place between my ears a thousand times a day. I have important work to do; weighing out the options of whether or not to eat the donuts in the work break room is just too darn distracting. Surely, there’s something in your wooly red bag to give me the strength to do the right thing every time.

As you can see, there are neither ponies nor sold-out video game consoles in my list, so I’m hoping filling my desires will be trouble-free. And as a thank you, help yourself to some of those chocolate lettuce-flavored zero-calorie cookies. They might not taste as good as the real thing; but - let’s be honest - you need to be taking care of your health, too.

About the author: Scott “Q” Marcus is the CRP (Chief Recovering Perfectionist) of www.ThisTimeIMeanIt.com, a website to support folks frustrated with making promises and ready to make a change in a supportive environment. Sign up for his free newsletter at the site or at facebook.com/thistimeimeanit. Contact him for coaching, consulting, workshops, and speaking at (707) 442-6243 or scottq@scottqmarcus.com. His first six years of these columns are now available on Amazon at http://amzn.to/StrivingBooks.