>Spring Cleaning Part I – Food Guilt

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Hey bloggies! My first post in my first series! Huzzah! Hooray! (;

In this series I am spring cleaning my mind. Over the fall and winter, it’s gotten a little messy with school, new obstacles, and stress. My goal is to address a different piece of clutter in each part of the series that is preventing me from living in the moment A.K.A. mindfulness.

[Mindfulness]*

n. bringing one’s complete attention to the present experience on a moment-to-moment basis {source}

The ohm symbol. Peace & tranquility.
Mindfulness is the goal of my therapy and something I can’t seem to reach. I am always obsessing over past mistakes or worrying about the future. Neither of these helps me in any way; simply put, it’s stressful and I’m tired of it. So I’m ready to start some serious spring cleaning, and soul-cleansing.

Now onto Part I….

[Food Guilt]*

n. a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined…. when in the context of food. {source}



{source}


I’m not sure about you, but when I have food guilt, it takes up a good part of my energy. I don’t feel encouraged to work out. I am someone who feels energized and encouraged to work out when I’m happy, not regretting my lunch. Whether it’s the food baby in my tummy, or feeling the sugar crash of a chocolate binge, I hate myself for it. I take all of this brain power I have and concentrate it on making myself feel awful, like I committed some sort of heinous crime! This guilt takes over for days. Then throw in that maybe I have an extra scoop of ice cream the next day… rally the troops! There are intense inner battles about to go down.

What’s the purpose? Why do we all sit and stew about something that can’t be changed? We had a moment of weakness and ate our feelings. Heck, maybe at the time you just wanted to enjoy something! Kicking yourself for it now doesn’t do you any good. Yet, some small part of us hopes that by sitting around moping, we won’t do it again. We’re punishing ourselves by making our inner selves take a time-out and “look at what we did.” This creates remorse, sadness, and humiliation. We are humiliating ourselves! All because we think that it will prevent us from doing it again.

Riddle me this… how many times did your mother have to tell you not to touch something when you were younger? How much more did each of those times make you want to touch that thing that much more? Through making eating a crime, we want it that much more. In fact, we begin to crave it. It’s like giving something up. Since becoming a vegetarian, I randomly get the biggest cravings for burgers. I almost never ate burgers when I was a carnivore, and suddenly I crave them as an herbivore. Why? Because they are the forbidden fruit. This is what we do to ourselves. (I satisify this craving with a grilled portebello mushroom, yum!)

So how do we fix this problem we’ve created for ourselves? It’s quite a conundrum. [hence why I chose it as the first part of this series] First, we need to stop beating ourselves up. We are fabulous just the way we are. If that piece of chocolate made us happy, so what?! One piece of chocolate is not going to turn into an emotional eating disorder. {If you feel you might be having a problem, maybe seeking help is a good idea… more on this in a moment.} One crazy night of celebration (cookie cake addiction anyone?… *raises hand*) is not going to translate into a 10lb gain the next morning. The important thing is to enjoy your dessert, and relish every bite. Remember how good that meal was, or that piece of cake. The next day, go back to normal eating. Wake up and have your best breakfast (oats pour moi!) to kick the day off right. Figure out what you are going to do for exercise that day. It’s all about balance and not beating yourself up. We all make mistakes, we all mess up! Check out my post on —10 Rules for being human—.

Now, sometimes, it isn’t just a mistake. Sometimes it is a real problem. I suffered from eating disorder thoughts and they are very hard to escape. I was able to work through some of this with the help of my therapist. Seeking help is okay. It doesn’t mean you are weak, it means you are strong enough to take the first step to getting better. Sometimes we all need a little help (;

Along with food guilt, sometimes we have exercise guilt. Okay people, we need a break from time to time. Whether that break is a day, a week, or a month, life gets hectic. During finals week I wasn’t able to work out more than once or twice. Today I can’t do anything but a stretching 20 minute yoga session because I played so much frisbee yesterday. You know what? That is okay. Beating up ourselves for lack of exercise is about as useful as a sword in a gunfight. Yes, it’s important to take care of our bodies, but overworking them isn’t exactly healthy is it? (;

Over the next week, I am putting up a challenge for myself. I will…

  • eat when I feel hungry, and not feel guilty about it.
  • enjoy dessert, not forbid it
    • control my portions of dessert (have it more often in small amounts)
  • exercise because it makes me feel good, not because I ate too much pumpkin bread last night
  • take a break if I need it — to relax and to rejuvinate myself

When I start to feel food guilt, I am going to redirect my thoughts. Maybe pull out my planner and figure out if there’s anything that I need to do. I can take care of clothes, make a cup of tea, read a book, clean my room, vacuum, take a walk, paint my nails etc etc. The goal is to take my mind off of food and guilt. I won’t wander around the kitchen, look through food blogs, read magazines (I can’t read these when feeling guilty because I hone in on the models and not their clothing!),  etc etc.

Ready to join me in this challenge? Ready, set… EAT!

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “>Spring Cleaning Part I – Food Guilt

  1. >AMEN AMEN AMEN girl! loving this post!

  2. >This is a great post.. I love the things you have set forth to do for yourself this week. Food guilt… is SO hard to deal with… and something I definitely struggle with

  3. >ahhhmazing post! =) I started analyzing food guilt this past year or so and realized that for me, it usually comes after I overeat something that I didn't truly enjoy but plowed through it b/c I thought i was hungry (or skipped a meal and realy was hungry!) If I didnt love it I regret over-eating it. If its yummy and awesome then its ok. haha. weird but its just something I noticed with myself! Working on turning my nose at un-yummy stuff more if I can. Its easiest done when i'm not eating out =)xoXOxoJenn @ Peas & Crayons

  4. >this is wonderufl, you are wonderful, and if i were a little more awake I'd ahve a mroe coherent response but I wanted to share my appreciation 😉 <3n

  5. >GREAT post! I think everybody deals with this from time to time and it is good to get your mind off of everything 🙂

  6. >Great Post! SO gald I found this! I'm also new and can't wait to read more about you!

  7. >What a great post. I'm definitely too hard on myself if I eat too much or eat foods that I shouldn't be eating but in the end it's not a big deal and I just need to live and not let food control me 🙂

  8. >SO excited to have you be a part of The Shine Project! Wooweee!!! we need people like you! 🙂 Your a doll!

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