Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

Since leaving Green Mountain, my life has changed. I enjoy movement and incorporate it into my life regularly. I’m starting to experiment with Cooking 101. My binge eating has lessened. I’m becoming more and more increasingly aware that food is just food.

That is disappointing.

Because now I have feelings. Big ones.

And I know that ice cream won’t solve them.

When I was stuck in diet mentality, I was really great at the whole restricting thing. I lost a lot of weight. You’d think I’d be happy, right?

Nope. I’ve never been so depressed in my entire life. I had these big feelings that were not being bandaged by food. Remember, I was restricting. So what did I do? I ate back all my lost weight, plus some.

I’ve broken free from the chains of dieting. I listen to my hunger and satisfaction signals. (I honor them imperfectly.) But those stuffed down feelings are arising again. I’m losing weight.

Sometimes I think about that period when I got really depressed, and wonder if I will end up there again?

I won’t. I’m a different, stronger person now. I have better boundaries, and lots of wise experiences to pull from.

But, I have to find other strategies to deal with my feelings.

You know… more than the typical Weight Watchers strategies of: take a bath, phone a friend, take a walk, get a manicure.

The strategies I want to bring to my feelings mean actually sitting with those feelings.

Trusting that they won’t overcome my system like they did before.

They include: crying a lot & knowing that I eventually will stop. Journaling through emotions, and ripping out the pages I’ve written, if I feel like it. Screaming in my car. Experimenting with Meditation and Mindfulness. Opening up to people who care about me.

Today was not one of those days. I was feeling so bad emotionally, and I wanted my physical body to have those same feelings. So I went back to my default of eating.

It takes time to build new neuro pathways. I will be patient with myself. Two steps forward, one step back.

How are you gentle with yourself? How can we infuse self-compassion into our day?


About eatingasapathtoyoga

Learning to savor food, yoga, & life.
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12 Responses to Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

  1. I love this post and I love that you made the distinction between really feeling your feelings and distracting yourself from them (a la WW). I’m not sure if it will help or not, but I have stopped looking at the steps as being either forward or backward…they’re ALL forward. We CAN’T go back. It may feel or look like a step “back” but each and every time we revisit old patterns or behaviors, we’re doing so with new eyes…it’s ALL forward, baby!

    • Thank you, Karen! That means so much to me. You are so right! It’s like hiking, maybe you go down a different trail, off the beaten path & you run into a waterfall you might not have gotten to see. Blessings.

  2. Wendy says:

    Thank you so much for sharing…ypur words resonated with my exprience… thank you for you and this web site and the beautifull “work” you are doing here such a sense of support ,healing ,openess and connection!!! Lovely (sorry about my spelling) I wish you peace and freedom!

  3. Maura says:

    Thank for such a great post. I appreciate your opening yourself so we can all benefit from the lessons you’re learning

  4. Kate says:

    Finally being able to feel your feelings is so scary. I remember how I was emotionally numb when both of my mom’s parents died (I didn’t cry at all), and then sobbing after my paternal grandfather’s funeral. It was so strange after being so numb for so long.

    I just keep telling myself that everything is ok. I’m learning to lean into the feelings and not stuff them down with tv or video games. (Just because I’m not binging anymore, doesn’t mean I’m, not 100% healthy yet.) Take care of yourself! You’ll get it!

  5. Kara says:

    Thinking of you…

    I agree, you don’t have to be perfect, it takes time and practice to change your thinking and learning new ways to handle the emotional times.

  6. Debbish says:

    I’m with everyone else, it sounds like you are really learning how to be more in touch with your feelings, non-hungry eating etc. I think that in itself is a great achievement!


  7. You are definitely not alone with this one. I have had many clients that have to re-learn how to deal with their feelings once they have removed food as an option. And it is exactly that, a learning process. Give yourself permission to do this =)

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