People are wired to be more focused on upcoming obstacles than the one that is already solved. We spend so much time on trying to solve some problem, but once the problem is solved, the stress about the new problem begins. Once we get fed up with it, we just call ourselves a failure. Because we are not focused on what we did good, we just see problems we are struggling with. But that would mean that never did that person have any problem and everything was peachy. How likely is that to happen?
It is a circle.
I believe the same goes with our relationship with food. We tend to be so critical about it – it is either normal or compulsive, there is no in between. But it is so normal to slip and to still keep going without punishing ourselves in the same direction. It doesn’t mean going back to the very beginning. Binge eating is often related to the tendency of having everything perfect and if something is not like that, then the food comes as a punishment or as a distraction. Also when I would eat again junk food that is my weak spot (everything related to chocolate), afterwards I would feel like shit and as if I had destroyed everything ever that was done well in terms of eating (if not even broader). That would just push me again into compulsive eating (if I messed it up already, I might as well go right until the end with it, what’s the point anyway).
Beside that “having everything perfect or not having it at all”, there is something else in the back of my mind that would keep pushing me into binging (primarily with sugar) – I didn’t see the point of it. Even if we win the binge eating battle, we will have more battles to go. So what’s the point?
I think that has been crucial for my binge eating. I didn’t want to stop because the food became the only thing it would make me happy, make me feel good about something, so I kept it around because it seemed it helps.
It helps as any other addiction would help (I was a proper sugar addict, I will write about it more in some other post). It helps the same as cocaine would help, or as cigarettes would help, or any other addiction would help: it feels like it is helping you at that moment, but it makes shit out of your life everywhere around you, and it does it on so many levels.
It gives you an instant feeling of being comforted. For a moment you feel better. Like you are doing something good, in my case also that rush of energy caused by so much sugar. It lasts for a while, sometimes calculated in seconds. After that it makes you regret it. Your sugar level in the blood goes lower than before. You have less energy, less willpower for anything, it makes you numb. You barely go back to the thing you were doing before it and you didn’t feel like doing. That’s why you ate something. Now you feel even less motivation for doing it. And you feel like shit. You even paid for it, and after it, you want more of it because it made you feel even worse.
So what the hell am I fighting for with it?
The problems will keep coming. But do I want to go without food? I think this is crucial. For a long time, I didn’t want to solve it. I thought everything is so bad that I cannot get rid of the only thing that makes me happy. But it does not. It makes me feel worse. Anxious. Sick. Unhappy with my appearance. It makes me hiding behind the fact that I don’t like my life at that point.
With the risk of being cheesy or disrespectful towards a symbol of Human Rights Movements, I would like to mention a story about Rosa Parker. I love it because I strongly believe some things don’t need to be planned out and there is no such thing as more or less significant battles. There are just habits that are more difficult to break, but there are points in life that make us feel so fed up with something that we just stop doing it. Refuse it. Sometimes you suddenly just get fed up with it. And stop reacting in the usual way. Stop caring about the triggers.
In the case of Rosa Parker, she became a hero one day by remaining sitting in the bus when every other time she would be standing up.
The context is crucial here and explains why it was so unlikely that would happen – it happened in the year 1955 in Alabama, when the places on a bus were reserved only for white people due to racial segregation.
One day after work she quietly refused to give up her place on the bus and that is how a revolution started.
Despite the habits, despite the expectations, even despite the law.
When you realize that you can no longer colaborate in something that violates your own integrity, your undestanding of punishment is suddenly transformed. (Quote from Parker Palmer on the Rosa Parks Desicion)
One day it is just too much and that is when a beautiful new life may begin.
It is all about the habits and our self-esteem. Because we have to change not only ourselves but also the one around us. In terms of how to be treated. In terms of saying enough when it hurts. Whatever it is. And it doesn’t have to be something big. No dramas are necessary. It is possible just to quietly not to do things that we usually do. Because it is something we have been taught to do. Because we are afraid that we will fail, just like all the previous times we failed. Because the odds are against us. But one day it just might happen that we quietly refuse to give up our seat and start a revolution with it. Nothing big, nothing loud, despite being used to doing it differently. Go easy with yourself. 🙂
Meanwhile: no binge eating for me today.
No ice-cream, nutella nor chocolate pancakes I went to buy in a shop.
I came back from the store with a coconut oil and made a sugar-free home made granole instead.
The house still smells like a freshly roasted victory. 🙂