food addiction

I can’t seem to beat this one. I’ve been attending group counseling sessions for it. So many things being uncovered and I honestly don’t know what effects my food addiction and what is just another aspect of me that should be recognized, worked on and/or accepted. Here are a few that i’ve narrowed down to my food issues.

Self doubt: We all do it. We are our own worst critic. I’m a perfectionist… well… maybe not so much a perfectionist… But I can not be embarrassed. I will avoid embarrassment at ALL costs. I have a phobia about it. I can’t handle publicly failing. I’m a realist, though, (or chicken shit) and just don’t do the things i don’t know that I’ll do well in public. I cover this up with self deprecation in jest… but… This is something I’m working on. No more negative comments just to be funny with me as the butt of the joke. This is causing a very awesome subtle change in me… I walk taller. I accept my short comings instead of beat myself up over it. It’s a good change and one I hope to make a habit.

Processing feelings: The overall idea that i’m getting in my group therapy is that we eat to cover up a need we have. maybe even a feeling we are experiencing. And instead of processing whats going on… instead of dealing with the negative things we are experiencing we cover that up with food… food is a reward. food makes us feel in control. food makes us feel safe. food is comfort. food is an easy socially acceptable thing to cling to. food is reliable. So, me and feelings… we don’t get along well. I don’t even know how to recognize a feeling. To help with this I’m working on my mindfulness. In a moment of emotional “hunger” (which takes practice in itself to recognize) I need to stop and rack my brain for reasons why… starting with the very surface of… am i feeling good or bad in this moment? And dig deeper from there. Am I really eating right now because I need sustenance? When was my last meal? what was it? This is a hard thing to do… because its the very opposite of what i’ve been doing. uncovering vs covering. There’s a lot in here. Not to mention the comforting and rewarding that we’ve been taught to use food for.  Its so blatantly obvious we don’t even notice it!

Boredom: I didn’t know that boredom was a feeling. Could my addiction be this simple? The thing about boredom is there’s a level of anxiety or discontentment. Lack of peace. How is this undone? Maybe when there is less self doubt there is more peace… you are more capable of being one with the quiet.

sleep deprivation and chaotic schedule: This is even more simple! I’ve done some experimenting with this lately. It helps to get a good night’s sleep… spend a night at home. I’ve been filling up my calendar so full lately! One thing after the other… literally. Gym, dinner, drinks. Before I know it I’m falling into bed at midnight and at work at 7am… miserable! FOod… bring me alllll the food! Especially if I’m hung over. or even if i’m not hung over! Two things here… 2) lack of sleep makes me want a lot of food. 2) drinking the night before leads to wanting A LOT of BAD food. Now, I will not forfeit my drinking with friends and going out and staying pretty social… but I am starting to be more mindful of these weeknight benders… And It’s about time I reign myself in… I’m 27… time to be a grown up. I doubt i’ll slow down til my friends do… we have way too much fun. But… I’m gonna dial it back a bit. There’s an odd sense of control and productivity when I stay home and keep a bed time… not sure why. But I do know that I feel amazing the next day when I do.

Lonely: I don’t feel particularly lonely. But I’ve noticed the times in which I decide to binge. It happens a lot after my niece or mom leaves my place. Or when I’m leaving a group of people. So, this is something worth thinking about. It is a human quality to want to be around people… to share things with others including time, feelings, sad things, happy things, meals, a bed. Its just a natural thing. We are relational beings.

I think that to dismiss any of these reasons would be detrimental to my “rehab”. But some are harder than others. Work in progress. I just hope that I can be “cured”. I know, once an addict always an addict. Just feeling a little helpless about it at times.

I’ll get there… just need to be more mindful in this direction.

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