Hitting the Reset Button

So something happened yesterday that hasn’t happened for a few months: I ate compulsively. It wasn’t an obvious binge, but over the course  of the day I noticed that I never felt hungry once, but I never felt satisfied and I kept eating. I didn’t get upset or anything, I didn’t think those awful thoughts that usually come with a binge. “Why are you doing this?! You’re so weak. You must not care about your body. All the hard work you’ve done, and you throw it away just to keep tasting.”

Nope, none of that. I just let it happen, knowing that something wasn’t quite right with me and that I didn’t quite have the strength to deal with it in the moment, which is fine. So I ate, and it all tasted delicious.

Later in my journal, I realized that I might just need to go back to the basics.

I believe that all compulsive eating behaviors come from a mixture of emotional and physical roots.  I know my physical and chemical roots well, and the way I ate yesterday-lots of sugar and simple carbohydrates, no protein, healthy fat or veggies-could only set me up for more binging. I’m sure my blood sugar was going nuts.

After the emotional work I did last week, I know that I’m still struggling with the feeling of urgency, of feeling rushed and trying to relieve that tension by eating. Though I worked out the feeling last week, I haven’t let it go yet.

So what did I decide to do?

This week, I’m hitting my reset button and returning to the basics, to what I know works for my body and mind.

  • Eating foods that make me feel good (lots of veggies with some fruits, nuts, eggs, fish and sprouted grains) and avoiding the foods that mess up my body signals (sugars, dairy, white flour)
  • Eating consciously-chewing thoroughly, eating at the table without a book or my computer, and blowing off mealtimes and eating when I feel like it.
  • Joyful movement, my way. This usually means a good walk or run in the morning, a few shorter walks throughout the day and my yoga practice.
  • Taking my time, removing all the pressure. Taking time to do yoga and study my scriptures, taking time to lock myself in my studio to play or just think if I want, and taking time to be slow.
I learned recently that I hate to hurry and I’d like my life to be slower and more relaxed, and now I’m actually going to slow down and relax, even if this means I don’t get as much done.
I wrote this down in my journal and I thumbed through a healthy cookbook to get in the mood by looking at healthy food, and then I started to feel nervous.
How is this different from a diet, or New Year’s Resolutions or other things I don’t follow through with? 
I wondered if I was putting myself on a diet in disguise, but after a few minutes of reflection, I realized this was different.
  • This comes from a place of self-love and a desire to heal.
  • Unlike a diet, this is all about removing pressure on the body and spirit
  • This is non-obsessive and feels like a relief. It’s not exciting the same way dieting. It just feels good, like falling asleep after a long day.
When I feel like I need to “start over”, I usually look at a ton of food and recipe blogs, read cookbooks and start collecting recipes like crazy, making plans, buy a bunch of food for new recipes that will sit in my pantry for months and eventually get so overwhelmed that I just say “forget it” and I’m back to square one. I’ve made no plans. If I decide to experiment with fo0d, it’ll start in my own body and at the produce section.
The bottom line is that maintaining health and connection to my creativity shouldn’t be a battle. We need to work with what we have and if we want to slow down and relax, we need to actually slow down and relax. It’s a radical idea in this society, but we need it. We might have to accept that we might not be able to get as much done as we wish we could and still maintain balance, but if we’re out of balance we won’t do much anyway!
So this week, I challenge all of you hit your reset button. Go back to what works for you. You don’t have to take the week off work-I’m not-but remove the pressure from yourself and focus on regaining balance. If you don’t know what works for you, dedicate this week to finding out. Don’t go overboard with planning, because you’ll just get overwhelmed.
Balance, this is all about balance.
Let me know how it goes!
McKella
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Posted on May 23, 2011, in Creativity, Intuitive Eating, Natural health, Stress and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Love it. Gentleness is a gift from God to ourselves.

  2. McKella…this is so good:
    “So this week, I challenge all of you hit your reset button”

    And “Don’t go overboard with planning, because you’ll just get overwhelmed.”

    Whether it applies to food, exercise, parenting, relationships, that is such good advice. Both pieces.

    Thank you for this post (and for the wonderful comments you always leave me!)

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