Inspirational Afternoons

28 Mar

Its that email full of criticism and harsh words.  Or that snappy remark from a friend in passing.  The attitude from your cashier at the grocery store.  Those little moments that get right under your skin and heat your blood to boiling.  What happens next?  Personally, I seek control and comfort, and my favorite place to find that comfort is in food.  Not chicken breast and steamed broccoli food, like Oreos and tortilla chips food.  Sound familiar?  And then its a downward spiral of guilt and upset tummies, which produces more guilt, and the soft tummy and thighs that make you angry at the chips and Oreos.  Until the next time it happens.  To talk about it in this manner, it sounds ridiculous.  I want to go back in time and shake myself and say “STOP IT!!!”  But I can’t.  Because really, it’s about more than behavior modification.

Why is it that we turn to food for comfort?  And why isn’t “comfort food” healthy?  WHO do you know that when they’re super stressed or bummed out goes and has a nice salad with dressing on the side and some grilled chicken?  Nope, nobody.  I think we know what is right and wrong, we know what will make us gain weight or lose it.  And in those moments when we cannot control our situation or our best friends’ behavior or our barista’s nasty attitude, we tend to pacify ourselves with something forbidden.  Like a treat for surviving.  Except is it really a treat when it happens daily?  More than daily?

What if, instead of trying to swap celery sticks for cheetos and convince your tongue it’s the same, we dug a little deeper and considered in those moments taking a pause.  Heck, take a walk if it gets you away from a bad food choice!  But in your pause, reflect on what is going on.  Acknowledge that, yeah, this sucks!  And there might not be anything you can do about it, but hurting yourself (by way of unhealthy food in excess when you’re not hungry), is not the way to fix anything.  So take some deep breaths, take a walk, call a friend who knows you and how to ‘talk you down’ per say.

Or.  What if you go back to that moment with that person that set you off?  What  do you think was going on in their day/life/etc that made them dump on you?  Is it possible that we’re all just messy people and sometimes that mess spills out on others around us?  So if someone’s mess causes your life to get messier, nobody wins.  If you can settle your pride and turn away from the comfort food, you win.  But if you went back to that person and showed them a loving gesture or asked how they were doing and maybe let them unload some of their mess, you both win.  Now, I know that is WAY easier written than done.  Our pride and sense of self-worth and justice-seeking are FIERCE opponents.  But if we think about it, these happen all the time.  In these little battles we have the opportunities to fight for or against the pain.  For or against unhealthy habits.  For or against isolation.  So even if you try and fail, or fail to try; keep trying, if your heart is in the right place, you’ll make a difference.

Try.

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