Updated: Mar 14
FULL DISCLOSURE, LADIES..!
I just slammed a big, fat muffin down my throat whilst sitting in my car in front of my favorite cafe. Good Lord! Poor lil guy doesn’t even know what hit him yet.… How did this happen?
Ladies, I have been writing to you about how to step away from food and to lean into the uncomfortable feelings. How to embrace the emotions that arise and to choose stillness rather than the binge; and here I am - turning left when I say turn right.
°Head hanging down… I’m feeling guilt, shame, confusion and all of this piled ON TOP of whatever it was I was stuffing down with said big, fat muffin.
Clearly there were messages trying to be known; and I just went into the automatic, familiar mode of hurry-up & shut-it-up. OUF!
BIG Breath Here..!
O.k. So, It’s done, right? I can’t undo the muffin. What can I do?
Experience tells me that it's a matter of moments before I feel the physical unease in my stomach: crowded, too much, kind of gross.
But, it’s done, right? I can’t undo it. So what can I do?
The judgmental chatter in my head is loud and unrelenting. ‘Why did you do that?’ ‘You caved; you gave in.’ ‘You just sabotaged your success.’ ‘You know better than that.’
Insert Coherent Breathing Here...
OK Wait. Another BIG breath here. With this next breath, I can start to recall the lessons I have learned and start to access the tools that are in my MindBodyBeauty tool-box. I take my hand to my heart with 3 deep, slow breaths, allowing it to speak to me. I take my hands to my head with 3 deep breaths asking my brain to be quiet. I take my hands to my gut with 3 deep breaths allowing it the calmness it deserves and hands back to my heart for that all important stillness.
This is Coherent Breathing.
Here, I can come back to connection with myself - out of judgement and into kindness.
Here I reconnect with Source.
Now I can gently question and rephrase the judgments. I can flip, ‘Why did you do that?’ to, ‘What was happening in that moment?’ ‘What was happening leading up to that moment?’ Because, let’s be honest, the muffin was only the reaction to what has been building up. Why didn't I want to connect to myself?
So What Was Happening, Dear..?
Still sitting here, I realize that I had actually been feeling anxious and uneasy all morning. Nothing extreme really, but a little bit on edge. Feeling rushed to get out the door and start my day of appointments and tasks. One being a phone call I (still) need to make. With this bit of stillness and reflection, I can admit that I was/am both excited and nervous to make this phone call. It’s an interview, and I want it to go really well. So nothing truly extreme here; however, you can see where something as normal as this can really make waves and cause havoc if we don’t catch it and tend to it in a loving way.
I pushed through, I didn’t stop and check in with myself. I ignored the signals. I stuffed it with a big fat muffin.
Ok. So it’s done, now what? I know I want to stop beating myself up and move forward with kindness and forgiveness for myself. I want to turn this around.
Ana Forest offers a ‘Formula for Change’ which I found to be really supportive and complementary to the MBB method. She says :
‘Banish a behavior that is bringing you pain so you can replace it with a healing action.’
1. Catch that you’re doing the behavior
2. Take 10 deep breaths and reset
3. Reward yourself lavishly for catching the behavior
4. Take one step toward healing
Although I didn’t catch myself in the behavior (also, I prefer the word catch rather than banish), I can absolutely move forward with these healing gestures and with practice, I know that it will become easier next time(s). Remember, Sweet Pea, there will be a next time(s) and that's o.k. That’s why we collect and use these tools - to help us in such moments.
Can You Face the Feelings Without Food..?
Yes, to catch it and reset is powerful. Just now, in the moment, I went into my old familiar coping behavior and did not stop and reset. I did not lean into the discomfort and become still so that I could hear what my soul was saying. My soul wasn’t asking for anything to eat, she was
asking for comfort, reassurance and quiet and that could not be satisfied with food.
Did you know that it takes ONLY 30 to 90 seconds for emotions to move through our bodies? Simple and incredible! So with this bit of knowledge, all we need to do is give ourselves up to 90 seconds and gently breathe. Fully be there in the moment and allow the feelings to come up and move out. I don’t want food to push these feelings down, I want to release these feelings with love and kindness, not aggression and muffins. I want to face my feelings without food.
So Now What..?
So now, my stomach feels crowded because I wasn't even truly hungry and I can not fast-forward to change that feeling. I also can NOT fix it with more food. So I wait, Sis; I wait for hunger to arrive again. I step out of the way of my body, and I step into trust knowing that she knows what to do. She will digest this muffin and turn it into fuel. My body repairs and regulates, and my job right now is to allow it the space to do just that. I go live my life.
I will continue through my day in trust and gratitude. Gratitude that I know I can make different choices. Gratitude for a body that will digest properly and gratitude for an interview that I’m excited about! I mean, that’s pretty awesome! I will make the call in calmness and presence.
You Haven't Failed..!
‘One final note: if you occasionally eat too much or too little, don’t worry. You haven’t failed. There is no such thing as failure with this approach - only learning opportunities.’
- Mind-Body-Beauty Week 6
I encourage you, Sweetness to move forward in kindness and in confidence. Kindness because you don’t have to beat yourself up over this. You haven’t ruined anything, nothing is lost. And confidence, because there is no failure; only knowledge, learning, healing and endless opportunities.
Sending you so much love (& kindness).