Archives for Overeating
There's a lot of confusion surrounding self-compassion: We see self-compassion as self-indulgent. We see it as selfish. We see it as weak. Which is unfortunate because a) this means that we don't practice self-compassion and b) self-compassion isn't any of these things. I asked several individuals who specialize in self-compassion to clear up the often misunderstood concept by answering this question: What do you wish people really understood about self-compassion? Last week I shared several of their truths in this piece. Below, you'll find several more truths from another therapist and a nutritionist.
Connecting to our feelings is vital. Recently, I came across this quote from the new book The Danish Way of Parenting, which is simply spot on: “How can we know what we want when we don’t know what we feel?”
You ate a bowl of ice cream. The full fat kind. Maybe, you even ate two bowls. Please don't punish yourself with cruel words. You are disgusting. You have no willpower. Please don't drown yourself in shame, blame and regret. I can't believe I did this. I'm the only one who can't control herself around food. This is humiliating.
Many of us think we have to repay anyone who says something nice or complimentary to us, to anyone who takes us to dinner, to anyone who pays attention or is kind in some other way (whether the kindness is genuine or ill-intentioned). We think we owe something beyond a heartfelt thank-you.
When I used to struggle and go through tough times, I didn't really know how to handle it. I didn't know what to do. Because what do you do during a painful situation? Years ago, I'd try to eat it away. I'd berate myself for having certain feelings and get even more upset. I'd withdraw and spend a lot of time on the couch, flipping channels and feeling empty. I'd also feel hopeless and helpless and alone. I'd feel restless and lost and very uncomfortable in my own body.
When you don't finish everything on your to-do list and more tasks keep piling up, try to be patient with yourself. When you look tired and your skin feels like sandpaper and you hate the way you look in everything, try to be patient with yourself. When you get easily distracted or can't make up your mind, try to be patient with yourself.
Yesterday, in this post, I shared three life-changing lessons I've learned about building a positive body image and practicing compassionate self-care. (I'm also hosting a book giveaway in honor of Weightless turning the big six, so be sure to check out that post.) Today, I'm sharing three more lessons I've learned throughout the years.
Instead of getting frustrated with our bodies, our reactions or our feelings, we can get curious. Instead of berating ourselves, we can dig deeper. We can explore why we're having certain emotions and reactions. We can scour our mistakes for lessons. We can examine what triggers our emotional overeating and what we really need instead. I love the concept of curiosity because it's a powerful way to engage with ourselves and our environment. When we're curious, we're more present. We're more open to learning. We get to know our needs. We get to know ourselves. We can use the information we learn to truly nourish ourselves.
This weekend I took out my journal and wrote a kind of letter to myself. I started with these words: I forgive myself... I wrote down the things I am ready to forgive myself for (and a few things I am not). Maybe you, too, want to focus on forgiveness, and write about what you're ready to let go.