Monday, May 10, 2010

My plan is simple, but not easy

SIMPLE: sim·ple   /ˈsɪmpəl/ [sim-puhl]
1.easy to understand, deal with, use, etc.: a simple matter; simple tools.
2.not elaborate or artificial; plain: a simple style.
3.not ornate or luxurious; unadorned: a simple gown.
4.unaffected; unassuming; modest: a simple manner.
5.not complicated: a simple design.

EASY: eas·y /ˈizi/ [ee-zee]
1. not hard or difficult; requiring no great labor or effort: a book that is easy to read; an easy victory.
2. free from pain, discomfort, worry, or care: He led an easy life.
3. providing or conducive to ease or comfort; comfortable: an easy stance; an easy relationship.
4. fond of or given to ease; easygoing: an easy disposition.
5. not harsh or strict; lenient: an easy master.
My eating plan is simple. Eat when you're hungry; don't eat when you're not hungry. In fact, when you boil it down to that, how could it be any simpler?

The problem is that almost all of our lives, we've adapted that eating plan to be:
Eat when your mom tells you to finish all the food on your plate.
Eat when your Aunt Martha spent all day baking that cake JUST FOR YOU.
Eat when you finished your first ballet performance.
Eat when it's your birthday.
Eat when you go on your first date.
Eat when you get dumped.
Eat when you feel left out.
Eat when you feel like you need a pick me up.
Eat when you need to grieve.
Eat when you're happy.
Eat when you're scared.
Eat when you're bored.
Eat when you're tired.
Eat when you don't know what else to do.
Eat when you feel out of control.
Eat to feel in control.

I've eaten for all of those reasons - and about eleventy billion more.

So eating when I'm hungry? It's not as easy for me as you might think. In fact, sometimes it's quite difficult.

Ex Yo-Yo Dieter Debbie asked what was going on before I ate (and ate) in my last post. The answer is: Everything. I've felt rushed and stressed...and so tying in with my body to find out it if was hungry or not just didn't happen.

After the last post (and all of your supportive comments), I decided to cut myself some slack. Those of you who have been living/practicing mindful and intuitive eating have let me know that this is a process and a journey. I can't expect to get it right every time all of the time.

So here's what I've figured out so far: deprivation dieting doesn't work for me - or at least it doesn't work for me for long. Stuffing my feelings with food doesn't feel right either.

But this mindful eating practice? When I do it, it feels really right. I like how I feel when I fuel my body with the stuff it likes and requires to be healthy - and that includes sleep, hugs, and good heart felt conversations.

I like feeling heard. I like listening to myself.

I like knowing that when my body is hungry, I can trust myself to nourish it. I like not living in fear of getting hungry.

I like knowing that I can get the full fat gouda slices for my sandwich without feeling guilty. I like not feeling like I'm cheating when I pass on the plastic fat free cheese slices.

Right now it's taking a lot of time to figure out what I want to eat, when I want to eat, and when I need to stop eating. So, my eating plan isn't easy - at least not right now.

But the struggle IS worth it. *I* am worth it.

I am worth feeling content, happy, loved, rested, and harmonious with my body.

What do you do to feel in tune with yourself and your body?


Katy said...

I hope I can get to this point with food someday. I'm glad you're listening to what YOU need and not apologizing for it. It's encouraging.

Margie M. said...

I like that you don't want to (or feel the need to) apologize for eating something that you want and that your body needs. I'm working on that issue now. It is a big one for me. I like your approach a lot and will see if I can achieve success doing it too.

I've always said losing weight is "simple" but it is not "easy"...just like your post title says. Great post!!

Margie M. writes at:

meleemistress said...

The best way to stay in tune with your body is to use it. A lot. Make demands of it. Force it to earn its keep. Push it beyond what you think it can do.

This means some exercise. That exercise will stress your body. Your body will need to recover. And in order to recover, it will want certain things. Certain vitamins and minerals. More protein. And when you practice mindful eating and honor your body's nutritional needs, you'll be eating very, very well. And you won't want junky food anymore.

Curvy Jones said...

What a great post and a "lightbulb" moment for you!