In my vision, I am slender. My clothing fits well. I move with ease. My eyes and skin suggest health and energy. I am one of those people that my current self would look at with envy and disbelief that I could have a body like that.
A Future of Intuitive Eating
In my vision, I exercise and move enough to maintain strength and flexibility while burning the calories I need to expend to remain a healthful weight. I don’t run marathons on the weekends but also I don’t have any physical limitations.
In my vision, I sit down to a plateful of food and eat slowly and consciously. If I don’t truly enjoy something, I stop eating it. I am attuned to my body’s needs. I stop eating when I am satisfied. A half a plate of food is in front of me, but I stop. I push the plate away from me. I don’t pick and nibble. I don’t make a big deal about being stuffed. The extra food is packed for lunch the next day.
I don’t feel anxious about leaving food on my plate even though in the past I’d be concerned about getting hungry before the next mealtime. I know I can wait for the next meal even if I want to eat before it is served. I never feel deprived.
My Key to Conscious Eating
If I’ve learned one thing over this past month, it is that I need to be more mindful. I need to eat slowly and notice the food that I’m eating. I need to notice my feelings. I need to notice when I’m physically uncomfortable. I need to learn to relax, which is a difficult process when sitting still and doing nothing makes me tense.
My key to conscious eating is “noticing.” I’m not talking about noticing things in the outside world but noticing things like being tired or angry so that I can respond in appropriate non-food ways. Eating won’t help when I need to sleep and it won’t solve a problem when I need to speak up. Is this really the solution to my overeating problem? I don’t know, but I imagine that if I pay attention long enough, a better solution may reveal itself.
Instead of writing daily articles, I’m changing over to weekly recaps of my process to become an intuitive eater, to follow the process of mindful eating. On more than one occasion, when I ate gummy ice cream that had spent too much time in the back of the freezer, I felt alone. I felt as if no one was quite so crazy or depraved or maladjusted as I was during those moments.
I want to continue to review publicly what I’m doing not to get a pat on the back when I get it ‘right’ but to share a mirthless grin with the overeater who shares my experience every time she or he thinks, “If I just ….”