Thanks so much to all of you who checked out the new recipe I guest posted at Bob’s Red Mill! < 3
This is an introduction to a few posts I am rolling out this month centered on healthy thinking. Basically, I think having replacement attitudes for redirecting the Crazies that get into all of our heads sometimes is pretty important to our overall flourishing. Looking over some of the posts I prepared, I was feeling encouraged, because I need a little reminder every now and again to keep my thinking positive. If you don’t find this helpful or interesting — truly, no worries. There will be plenty of photoshopped nuttiness and delicious Yum Town tickets offered to keep you pacified. Promise. ; ) Just peace out now by checking out fun things like this. Or this. Or my recipes. You know, whatever you fancy.
SO. Yesterday was pretty lighthearted. Today, let’s get a little personal… I know we’re still getting to know each other and all, but — I like you. I mean… I really, really dig you. And I want to take this friendship to another level. I know, it’s a bit of a risk. But let’s get serious. I want to start this relationship off right by being transparent. I’m going to tell you a little bit about my past. Hope you’re down with that.
I don’t know about you, but the majority of my issues in life have been grounded not in my appearance or status (as I assumed), but my thoughts. Whoa — seriously? Losing X amount of weight won’t make me deliriously happy and bring flocks of little birdies to me in adoration like Snow White? Stop the press! Looking back, I shake my head at this. I wince. But, it really is how unhealthy my mind was when I was younger. I believed that I only had value if I were “valuable” to others, being what they wanted me to be. (And yes, I definitely include media in “they.”)
I frequently felt unsure of myself, and I dealt with that by looking to external means of affirmation. If I felt ugly, I would objectify myself in various ways to hear that I was not. If I was anxious that I was “unlovable”, I would throw myself into anything that would make me feel “lovable” — disordered eating, unhealthy friendships/relationships, whatever. My thoughts were distorted, but they were my reality. If I wasn’t being who I was supposed to be (according to the insane messages I internalized), I was a failure. Big time sad face. Big time confusion. Big time mistake.
I know. This is heavy stuff, right? But bear with me. It gets way better. There is a ridiculously happy ending to this story. One day, after fighting these unhealthy thoughts of how much I sucked, how fat, terrible, unattractive, unsuccessful, and horribly different I was — I finally kicked that thinking in the facehole. I was done letting my life be dictated by this crap. Every day, I strived to reason with myself; I confronted my thoughts with questions like, “Do you really believe that? Is that what your history shows you? Would you think that about someone else in the same situation? Is that logical? Realistic?” I confess, I’m utterly imperfect (alas! I know, sorry. Don’t stop reading my blog now that the secret is out.), and there were moments when I gave bad, self-denigrating responses. But eventually I realized it took so much effort to weave together weak arguments to counter these questions that these negative replies were probably not rooted in anything remotely substantive. I began to see myself rightly. I was free at last to be and become who I really am, and to continue to nourish flourishing in my life and identity. Yay! (<– Happy ending applause, please.)
Whew. Drama drama. I assure you, other posts subsequent in this series will not be nearly so serious, nor so me-focused! But as I was editing what was supposed to be the first post, I realized an introduction might be appropriate. Anyway, fear not — food and other fun is around the corner ; )
Can you relate to having unhealthy thoughts that bring about unhealthy habits, situations, relationships, lifestyles?