So, it is now mid-January. How are you doing? Does it feel great to have the holidays behind us, or do you miss the fun? Do you feel proud of what you did with your food or do you feel sad and disappointed?
And what about your own goals for the new year? Are they coming along well? (Mine aren’t, but please don’t tell anyone!).
Now is about the time that our new years resolutions go south, and so does the food. I am always disturbed when people make a small error and then give themselves permission to dive into the food, berating themselves as being stupid failures.
Please don’t do that to yourself.
It won’t help and you don’t deserve it.
Let’s look at this from another perspective. I am driving my car down the road, going to a friend’s house. I hit the rumble strips – you know, those funny things on the side of the road that are supposed to warn you to get back in the center of the lane? I hate that rumbly feeling they give me, but they give me several choices:
- I can move back into my lane, say a mental thank you to the rumble strip, and go visit my friend.
- If the rumbles continue, I can pull off the road into safe spot and look at what’s wrong: am I tired, angry, hungry? Have I been on the phone with an upsetting person? Is my dog, who always is calm in the car, causing a ruckus?
- Or is there something wrong with the car? Do I have a flat? Is there something wrong with my steering wheel, a bent wheel, or a “U-Joint”?
- Or maybe I am feeling emotional, frightened, upset about something and that’s affecting my driving?
Depending on what is wrong, I may need to call a support person, or triple A, or get off the phone, just take a few deep breaths and calm down, and refocus my energy to get back on track.
What I DON” T want to do is speed up and drive into a ditch, a tree, or another car! This will cause much bigger and more painful consequences: tow trucks, police officers, a damaged vehicle, and no peaceful afternoon with my friend.
This is like relapse. When you make a bit of an error with your food, just get back on track immediately. Stop and rest and call a sponsor or a good friend. Calm down. What is the real problem and what do you need to do about it? Does your program need some upgrading or attention? Do you need more rest or sleep or exercise?
Maybe your food plan needs to be reexamined. A food plan should fit you and your life like your most comfortable sweatshirt, not like a straitjacket. If it doesn’t, if it is not giving you what you need, then sit down with one of your trusted advisers and fix it.
When, how, where, and what we eat is a set of habits. Being in recovery demands that you change a lot of the habits that you have practiced (and struggled with) for a very long time. Try to keep an open mind about the changes. Give yourself the chance to get used to these new ways of eating, to give them the chance to work for you, and see where they lead you.
The goal for you is peace, and a position of neutrality around food – safe and protected and free of those awful cravings and obsessions. Please reach out for help if you need it.
Blessings to you,