My Healthy Living Journey

Restriction Vs Self Love

I baked cookies this weekend for the essential oils class, and there are still some leftover. Yesterday, those cookies kept catching my attention.  Had this been a year ago, or maybe even 6 months ago, those cookies would’ve been gone by Monday afternoon.  If you didn’t know better, you’d think this post is about self control and restriction, but I’ve got news for you; I’m chose to not eat the cookies yesterday out of self love and self respect.  Don’t believe me? Read on, my friend.

I used to try to restrict my sugar (or other various food groups/portions) in the name of “self control” and it never worked.  Before long, I’d fall face first into whatever it is I thought I couldn’t have.  That’s how restriction/binge cycles work.  You restrict something, only to go nuts and binge on it later, and then you feel guilty for binging so you restrict again.  The key to this cycle is the guilt.  When you feel bad about eating something you think is “bad”, you want to make up for it by not eating it anymore, but then you feel restricted and eventually lash out, and around and around the cycle you go.  Unless you can break free by removing the guilt.

I’ve mentioned in a previous post that I had started falling back into old binge-y habits recently, and normally that type of action would’ve ruined my progress, except this time I don’t feel guilty.  I made choices and ate food that didn’t nourish my body, but it’s not like I killed someone.  Eating too much food is not something to feel guilty about.  It’s not immoral or shameful, it’s just a choice.  Granted, it’s not a choice that’s helping me with my health goals, but I no longer feel the need to punish myself for binging.

Yesterday, I chose not to eat any cookies because I didn’t really want them; it just felt like a habit to reach for one as I walked past them.  A habitual response to walking past treats is not a good reason to eat something that I don’t actually want, so I made the choice to ignore my “cravings”.  In reality I know that one cookie is not going to ruin my life, but I love myself enough to evaluate my choices and decide whether or not something is worth it in that moment.  Will it make help or hurt my health goals?  Is it worth potentially not feeling well physically?  Is it special in some way?  The cookies were not worth it yesterday, so I chose not to eat them.  Today, I may decide that eating some cookies is more important than my health goals, and that’s a choice I’m allowed to make without guilt.

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