Monday, October 08, 2012

Change

I've now read Women Food and God twice and have started When Food is Love: Exploring the Relationship Between Eating and Intimacy. This is the major goal I'm focusing on:

My inner judge constantly criticizes my actions, body, food, clothes, etc and I'm putting a stop to this self-hatred.

Here are the strategies I'm using:
  • Emotional Freedom Technique
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
  • Bach Flower Remedies (there's one for believing you're inherently flawed)
  • Using Geneen Roth's ideas to be gentle with myself
Here are the actions I'm taking (just started in the last couple weeks):

When my inner critic makes comments such as "I'm not nearly as thin as I used to be" I respond with things like, "And that is not important." I don't want to fight with it, insult it or try to deny that it's telling the truth. I just need to take the sting out of the comment.

When I start to restrict food by thinking, "I really want a cheeseburger, but I should just have the beef patty and some vegetables," I now let myself have the cheeseburger.

And later, if the inner critic thinks, "I shouldn't have had that cheeseburger," I think back, "It's okay. I deserve to have whatever I want. A cheeseburger won't kill me."

I am unseating the inner critic. It's no longer in the front seat. Now it's in the back seat and when it pipes up, I dismiss its self-loathing statements. I'm discovering that if I truly allow myself to eat whatever I want with no judgment and no payback, I don't want to eat everything in the world. My appetite might actually be trustworthy!

The Exercise: relax my entire abdominal section completely, no matter where I am or what I'm doing or how many people can see me. Breathe into my belly three times, letting it expand fully, knowing it's okay no matter it's size. Know my belly is the center of my being and it knows what my body needs and it will guide me to what I really want to eat, if I listen to it. (Yesterday I wanted a shake, but I stopped and checked in with my stomach and knew I'd be in pain if I did it. So I peacefully declined.)

I'm starting to trust my appetites and desires. Staying in tune with my stomach, I know exactly when to start and stop eating and what to eat. I'm doing less eating that gives me a stomach ache later.

This is just a quick summary of what I've been working on extremely hard. Geneen Roth's books have been critical to these shifts and I highly recommend any of her books (she has several). I particularly like this quote:

Our relationship to food is a microcosm of all that we learned about loving and being loved, about our self-worth. It is the stage upon which we reenact our childhood. If we were abused, we will abuse ourselves with food. The degree to which we are violent, abusive, self-punishing is in proportion to the degree of violence, abuse, and punishment we received. We learned how to do it by having it done to us.
- Geneen Roth, When Food Is Love

To everyone who is dealing with these issues, here we go. We can do this. 

4 comments:

Cynthia Lane said...

I really liked your blog today! The blog appeared to be very peaceful. Or is it I by reading the blog who is peaceful!?

Regina Rodriguez-Martin said...

Thanks, Cynthia!

Anonymous said...

Would you, please, tell us which floral bach remedies are you using? Is this helping you? I actually know little about it, how you can take it, when.. and so on.

Regina Rodriguez-Martin said...

I've found the following remedies helpful for me: Vervaine (for my need to convince others of my opinions), Crabapple (to accept my imperfections), Rock Water (to allow enjoyment of life and have less rigidity), Gentian (to counteract discouragement), Heather (for empathy and less talking about ME) and Impatiens (for patience).

I used a mix bottle to combine these (with spring water) and took four drops on my tongue several times a day. I'm sure you can find the details of the procedure online or at stores that carry these remedies.

After a few weeks, I noticed that I was feeling less need to share every detail of my life with everyone I knew. I also felt more relaxed, better about myself and hopeful about my life. So, yes, I definitely recommend Bach remedies. If you take the "wrong" one there are no side effects. It simply doesn't do anything. But if it's right for you, you'll eventually feel it. I think it's a no-lose way to go.