Anyone who's keeping me company in this blog will have quickly picked up that I've not exactly had an easy time of sticking to my weight loss plans. I have wonderful intentions which last about three days, and then I go off the rails. So much of my eating is emotionally based - whether I've had a good day, a bad day, or something in-between, my first go-to is food. Somehow dealing with the underlying issues had just seemed like a good candidate for the "too hard basket".
But I finally realised that perhaps I needed to spend more time figuring out what's going on in my head than focusing on my waistline. It finally dawned on me (I can be a bit slow!!!) that until I learn to understand what's happening in my mind, I'll never get a handle on my eating.
Enter Geneen Roth. She's an author who has written extensively on the reasons behind emotional and compulsive eating, and I've even bought a couple of her books over the years. Not that I read them mind you! They went on the bookshelf, and into that limbo land of "I must get around to reading that one of these days". And somehow that didn't happen.
But a few weeks ago I picked up "When food is love" and started to read. And it felt like I'd been hit by a truck. Everything she wrote made sense. It all resonated with my experiences. It was as if Geneen had written the book just for me.
She talked about using food to push down emotions. About the fact that many of us feel despair on a deep inner level, which we mask with compulsive eating. About how food can be our lover, best friend and confidant, because it's always there, never talks back, never hurts us and never disappoints us. But when we turn to food for reasons other than true physical hunger, one bite is never enough.
It's rare that something really moves me to action, but this book has. It's not a magic button to make everything better, but I've finally realised that I need to lose weight in my mind before I can lose it in my body. I will admit I'm terrified to deal with some things I'd prefer to avoid, but this is an essential step to freedom.
If you've come to a similar conclusion in your life, I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!