Have you ever thought about all the real estate in your brain obsessing over food takes? What kinds of things would you have room to think about, what kinds of things could you do if food, dieting, and body image had less of a hold?
Some people use food to fill chronic emptiness. Others eat out of boredom, to add some excitement into their worlds. Some people use it to stuff down feelings that are too uncomfortable to feel. Many people believe that it’s unacceptable to feel anger, sadness, anxiety, or depression and push those feelings away with eating or obsessing about dieting and losing weight. Sometimes it’s not just feelings that people are avoiding, sometimes there are thoughts that they don’t want to think, events that they don’t want to remember, or life that they don’t want to deal with. Many avoid life by falling into the never-ending cycle of weight loss, weight gain, bingeing, starving, exercise, etc. It doesn’t leave much time in their brain for anything else.
Do you spend more time thinking about food and your body than other things? If so, what do you think you might be avoiding? What do you think you might be missing out on?
If you think about looking back on your life in 50 years from now, will you feel that you spent it obsessed with calories, numbers on a scale and numbers on a treadmill, or were you able to take advantage of all that life has to offer?
If you think that food and body image takes up more airspace than you’re willing to give it, or that you want to give it, you might want to try to make and effort to cultivate other, healthier interests. Don’t let food stop you! Don’t let your weight stop you! No, “I can’t do this or go their till I lose weight.” Try to work toward reclaiming your life. This is the only life you get. Live it for you, not for what you think other people are thinking or for what the numbers on a scale, a label, or a treadmill say. If you can’t do that alone, get support or help from a therapist, or a support person.