Sherri Frost has engaged me in a Cross Blog Conversation (CBC).
While that term may be unfamiliar, the sentiment is not.
I’m sure you’ve overheard a conversation where you had something to say but couldn’t or didn’t because you didn’t know the people in the conversation.
In a CBC, you basically get to listen to a conversation between two people, one or both of whom you may or may not know. And this is the best part, you can comment on their conversation if you’d like.
Sherri, there are two parts of your question for me.
Do I Define Myself By What I Eat?
First I’ll say I used to be dogmatic about what I ate. The more I was
interrogated asked about it, the more convicted I became to uphold my dogmatic view.
And my self talk only exacerbated my dogma.
My self talk sounded positive or motivational out of the context. I’d say things like – “you can do better”, “push a little harder”, “you’re better than this”.
But in the context of following the rules for stringent eating, that self-talk was quite destructive, because there was no room for self-acceptance.
It wasn’t until I started asking myself if I’d say to other people, what I was saying to myself, that I realized just how destructive my self-talk had become.
Now, there is mostly acceptance about whatever I happen to eat and there aren’t any right or wrong foods.
The “Right” Foods Are Ones You Enjoy Eating (Kind of)
What I realized is when I label foods as right and wrong, I do a disservice to my eating and my desires for what I want to eat.
The longer I used this label to control what I ate and the more I tried to be as perfect as possible with it, the more deprived and guilty I felt about giving in to the “wrong” foods, especially when some of those wrong foods were ones I enjoyed.
So I’m in the process of redefining the definition of “right” and changing my self-talk around eating in general. There are guidelines to eating healthfully but no rules and definitely no “right” or “wrong” foods.
It’s all about enjoying what I choose to eat, working to stay aware of what I’m eating and accepting that I’m am an imperfect human who loves to eat pretty much anything that didn’t fly, crawl or walk before it reached my plate.
A strong combination of therapy, counseling, meditation, prayer, qigong, and support from others has helped me get to this point.
The old ‘not good enough’ self-talk still rambles around, yet I can recognize it most times and offer it some compassion from a place of self-care and acceptance.
It’s still a work in progress. Heck, I’m still a work in progress.
One of the things I tried that just didn’t seem to work for me was affirmations.
My question for you Sherri, is … What has helped you change negative self-talk into positive self-talk? Are there things that didn’t work as you expected, yet enhanced your life anyway?