I work with some amazing women on a mentoring team. We were talking about journaling. Specifically using th prompt of when you were really happy in life. What did you eat? How did you dress? What activities were you involved with? What did you do with you friends for fun? Somewhere along th line, we started doing different things, being different people. To some extent, that is healthy to change and evolve. But if you were happy when you ate 4 times a day, played kick ball at recess, and lived in play clothes; how can you feel the same if you eat once a day, usually a drive thru, activity consists of running errands, and wear stuffy dress clothes or pjs?
There has to be something you can do to change your ways so that you can be happy again. If you are a parent, you’d do anything to take away your child’s pain. Don’t you deserve the same? Change your thoughts, your habits, your friends, your whole life, easy? No way! People are naturally pretty resistant to change. Even if you are ready for change, you may have someone els in your life not ready for change. Misery loves company. If your friend isn’t happy, she doesn’t want anyone els to be happy. I would say it is time for a different circle of friends. Sometimes family is your biggest supporters. Other times, they say that You never stick with change, Are you trying to make yourself better than us, You haven’t succeeded before so why now? I am not going to say you need to drop your family, although can be a valid option. You may simply need to find a new support system. It is so easy in the digital world to find a group trying the same exercises or diet as you. Reach out, and let someone else believe in you until you believe in yourself.
My mind was racing with all kinds of thoughts about this writing prompt. I thought about how strongly I encourage people to keep food journals. Record your food, your drink, and your feelings. Why does it work? It stops downward spirals, it makes you more conscious of your eating and your thoughts. Then I shifted to power. When we were young, food was a source of reward and consequence. Birthday, celebrate with cake. Read all your books for school, get pizza. Thanksgiving, have a feast. Holiday, party at school with candy and cupcakes. Misbehaving, go to bed without dinner. Family shirt on money, skip meals. Parents too busy for you, cereal for dinner. At some point we shift. You find yourself not in control of a situation, and you control your food intake. You eat too much, you eat too little. The seed has already been planted for food to be your comfort. Now you let food control you. Take he power back! Craving ice cream? Go for a walk, and plan an ice cream nite the following week. Popcorn calling your name after dinner? First, stop buying it. But make yourself get busy in a project instead.
This is not an easy process. But you are worth being happy. And truly being happy means that you are healthier, inside and out.