Day Eleven – Facing Fear
“Change happens in thousands of little steps.” ~Dianne Bondy
Quick fixes and diets are designed for fast and immediate results. They are used to start tomorrow and feel instantly successful. However, learning to develop a better relationship with food isn’t a quick fix and it isn’t easy.
It’s HARD work!
It takes time, focus, woking on the hard stuff, and sometimes even set backs. You’ve been down that downward spiral before. Diet, Binge, Feel Bad, Gain Weight. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat. You know that place doesn’t feel good either!
Today, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the information you have read thus far. It may be challenging your thinking, but you still have those excuses why you can’t or are afraid to change.
Fear causes us to disconnect from ourselves. You may fear if I let go of dieting, what will happen to my body? Will my eating be out of control? Will I do it right? Will things go terribly wrong?
It’s not surprising that fear would come up because we live in a culture where you are shamed for being in a larger body or eating foods you enjoy. Everywhere you turn someone is telling you, you aren’t good enough because of the body you are in.
Sit with the fear and acknowledge the fear. Don’t run from it. Running from it won’t change the downward spiral, it will only lead you to it again and again. Finding a health a every size therapist could be helpful in your journey and so can facing those fears head on.
Try this exercise as you think about giving up dieting:
- Sit down with no distractions (turn off the television and phone)
- Close your eyes and take deep breaths (pay attention to your breath)
- Feel your breath filling your whole body from your head to your toes and then release the breath
- Acknowledge the fear of giving up dieting and what that would mean for you. Feel how your body responds. Do you tense up? Feel the tension and then breath to relax it.
- Keep working through your fears until you feel more relaxed about your fear.
- Now, picture how it could be different, what it would look like from a positive light to give up dieting.
- Open your eyes, take a big breath in and a sharp exhale out.
How did that feel?
This is an exercise you can do over and over again, when that fear comes up for you. When you fear the change you will continue to go back to old habits. To truly change, you have face the fear head on.
Tell me, how did this exercise go for you? It is very intense and difficult for some people. You may feel you want to stop the exercise and get away from those feelings that are coming with it. Don’t run away from those feelings, be with them. It is likely something you’ve avoided and run from for a long time.
It is important to remember that all things worth doing often take time and effort. Take a moment to imagine your life free from dieting. Remember change can be frightening, but the way that you respond to those events is a choice.