‘I can’t believe I did that!’- A personal post
Sometimes my house can be a stressful place to be-there’s usually a lot going on, 3 children, a busy husband and a busy me.
Throw in a bit of teenage angst and a difference in parenting styles (I’m sure you catch my drift) and last night in particular was one of those challenging evenings!
Now, I could have been Mindful about this, I could have chosen to look after myself and listen to a relaxation podcast or have a nice warm bath to curb the stress but instead I decided in my infinite wisdom to a) eat pizza and b) have too much to drink! It was just THAT kind of evening! No matter that I’m not ‘supposed’ to eating pizza (because of my recent gall stone shenanigans), no matter that I know that drinking wine does not put me in a happy place, I just decided what the hell, I’m doing this anyway! Classic avoidance, or classic ‘self sabotage’ as someone helpfully commented the other day.
So, big surprise, today I woke up with abdominal pain and a fuzzy head.
Not excruciating pain, but the kind of pain that has you (or me) rubbing my tummy, needing to have my trousers unbuttoned (!) and currently, not wearing a bra because even that feels too uncomfortable and restrictive! Nice, eh?!
This all puts me in mind of how I used to feel on the occasions when I would overeat and I used to do this a lot before I found Mindful Eating. I would overeat in the evening and I would then feel rubbish the next day. Mainly, because I would berate myself for what I had done. ‘Why did I do that?’ ‘What’s wrong with me?’ ‘What a total idiot!’ I could go on.....
Once I found out about Mindful Eating though, I realised that berating oneself for one’s choices is a TOTAL WASTE OF TIME. It achieves nothing, other than making you feel even worse about yourself. And this isn't a happy place to be either. Part of what I teach in my Mindful Eating workshops is that the best way to deal with the odd ‘slip up’ is just to learn from it and move on. There is no self criticism, no berating, no self flagellation required. This is really important actually because if you do this, it fuels the destructive cycle, you feel bad, so you eat more, then you feel worse, then you eat more etc.
And if we want to get really into what the Mindful Eating approach can do, we could deconstruct what was REALLY going on for me last night. We could have a think about how my ‘slip up’ was all about me not coping with the stressful situation I was in last night and how I just didn't have the strength, or the motivation actually, to deal with what was going on, so I slipped into my old habit like I would a comfortable pair of slippers. Except, they aren't comfortable really!
So today, yes I am feeling a bit delicate around my abdomen and around my head BUT it’s ok. No-one died. The world has not ended. I am doing the best I can-as we all are. I’ve talked to some friends and have got some perspective and I’ve talked to my family members too and we have a plan of sorts. I’m going to let myself off the hook.
How about you consider doing this for yourself too? If you are someone who has a strong inner critic (as I do sometimes) or if you are someone that struggles with letting go of things if you’ve made a mistake or done something you regret afterwards. Imagine what you would say to your child if they were in a similar situation and talk to yourself in that same way, with self compassion, self care, with love because YOU are important too!