How is it Happening?

This morning someone posted a call for help on a Facebook group I follow.  The group is not related to weight/eating but the person who posted admitted that he is a binge eater and definitely feels that it is out of control at this point.  I'm pretty quiet on Facebook in general, I "like" or react to posts but I don't comment in groups that much because I have been burned by nasty people in the past, and I don't like to sound like I know all the answers to everyone's problems.  But this topic is too near and dear to me to not reply.  Some other replies were suggesting that he talk to his doctor about it, which isn't bad advice, but being that this person admits to having anxiety, I am not sure a medical doctor could help much, unless they have a good amount of knowledge about disordered eating.  I recommended renting self-help books from the library, and of course, mentioned Geneen Roth because I absolutely adore her and her books have helped me a lot.  I mentioned that I have pretty much moved past my compulsive eating by doing just that, reading. I do realize there is a distinction between binge eating and compulsive eating but they are somewhat related and can absolutely intermingle. 
It got me thinking, I have been reading Geneen's work for some time now and I wasn't very successful at following her advice in the past, so how is this magically working for me now when it didn't before?  How can I tell someone else how to do it if I don't really know how or why it's working for me?  
So hereI have been eating better things (a lot less sugars)  since getting on blood pressure medicine last July. So here's what I think is happening:
1. A health issue that was absolutely connected to my weight and lack of effort.  That was concerning to me because there has been a lot of information about the correlation between high blood pressure and dementia.  I really don't want to lose my mind and become a burden to everyone later in life.  If I can control that at least a little bit, I have to try.

2. Physical stimulus.  Now that I'm in my mid-40's I have a lot more pain and I have actually felt the difference in the pain level when I eat less sugars. I have also noticed that when I do have something with more sugar than I have been eating, it gives me a dull headache and makes me sleepy.  I've also mentioned many times, how I really dislike that sugar-phlegm that wads up at the back of my throat when I eat sugar.  I remind myself of these things when I am trying to decide whether or not to indulge in something sweet.  I am finding it easier and easier to pass sweets up because of these things. 

3. The toughest part for me to get on board with has been the exercise, and I think I am getting better at this.  It started with my work challenge.  There were so many days I really didn't feel like doing it, but once I got moving, it actually made me feel pretty good mentally and physically.  And, as luck would have it, it kind of became a habit.  Just yesterday at work, I found myself pacing back and forth in my work area, and I thought to myself, 'Oh yeah, I'm not doing that challenge anymore'.  And now this week I am finding that I'm not really fighting getting some kind of exercise in, I already know that it makes me feel happy, energetic and refreshed afterword, and leads to a more relaxed state through the day.  I am not doing it in some crazy manic way hoping it will burn calories and make me thin.  I can certainly tell that using the stationary bike is strengthening my legs and glutes, and that is something I've been needing for some time, to help stabalize my hips and knees.  Plus, I don't think it's coincidence that since I've been more active, my body aches less.  Win-win-win.

4.  Commitment to getting off auto-pilot where food is concerned.  I'm not saying I never eat when I'm not hungry, but the times that I do are few and far between now, and I am much more aware of when I am considering eating something when I'm not hungry.  Being aware of the thoughts gives me the opportunity to stop the behavior.  If someone puts out a snack and I want to eat it but I'm not hungry, I examine why I want it.  A lot of times it's because if I don't take some at that moment, it will be gone and I will have missed out.  So I have learned to put a little sample of it in a baggie to have when I actually am hungry.  It takes away the urgency.  I listen to my cravings when I am under the influence of hormones, and eating a little bit of something I am craving helps to take the charge out of the craving and then it's usually business as usual.  When I deny myself the craved food (during hormonal shifts at least) it usually makes me eat like a mad woman, trying to get the same feeling from other foods.  I have also learned to use substitutes; having more fruits and veggies in the house so I can still have a snack or a side with a meal and it won't send me on a blood sugar rollercoaster. 

5. Inner work.  I think 2018 was a terrific beginning of me fixing the emotional stuff.  It, above all the things above, has been the absolute key to being able to be calm and at peace with all of this.  I had some really faulty thoughts in my head about myself, things I am sure were born out generations of trauma and family ways passed down.  If you haven't checked out the book "It Didn't Start with You" I highly recommend it.  Some of the things I had convinced myself of (I'm a loser, I am in everyone's way, I am a burden, I don't deserve what others do, I want too much and do too little, etc etc etc) were the byproducts of parent's parent's parent's issues that kept getting passed down to me.  I didn't deserve that, but neither did they.  So I began to recognize when I was reacting to stuff I believed without examining it, and then I started to re-write my story for myself.  I do deserve everything I can take from life.  I am not in anyone's way, I have every right to own my space.  I am lovable and people will miss me when I'm gone.  My legacy doesn't have to be grand, but just that I lived and was loved.  You get the drift.  And I reminded myself of these things until it started to feel natural.  It is not conceit; it doesn't mean I treat people poorly because I think more of myself than I used to, in fact I feel more natural and easy going since I have more confidence and I'm not always assuming people are judging me negatively. 

The truth is, I don't really think about my weight even a fraction of what I used to.  I know it was a diguise for some other ugly stuff inside me.  Now that I'm learning to quiet the untruths and assumptions in my head, I'm feeling pretty good to be me.  How priceless is that?


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