When the Outside Messes with the Inside

I was just so proud of myself a month or two ago. I was fairly convinced that I’d figured out the major puzzles of my life. Or at least one major puzzle, the tendency to put stuff in my mouth when I wasn’t hungry.

I honestly believed that attending Geneen Roth’s residential retreat and living the Women Food & God Way had brought such a bolt of enlightenment that I would never eat compulsively again.

That was before I started moving everything out of half of my house for a long-anticipated remodel. Before I began traveling and celebrating the freedom of summer. Before I started working on a book project, or at least before I experienced my favorite procrastination technique.

You guessed it. Putting food on my mouth when I’m not hungry. (Sound familiar to anyone?)
In other words, I let my external circumstances mess with my inner resolve and equanimity.

So here I am again, stuck with the pesky reality of being human, complete with some very deeply grooved habits.

What do I make this mean? Time was (not so long ago) when it meant I had an excuse to give up and go back to the same old way….fogging out more and more on what I was eating and when.

But what I know now is that this old habit is a “temple bell” summoning me to wake up. To choose clarity over fog.

Here’s my plan. To reclaim what was working before. To stay aware of how much and what I’m eating. And to ask myself some good questions if I’m not.

Questions like: what’s going on? What am I believing that would convince me that it’s a good idea to abandon my body’s real needs for my mind’s immediate impulse?

If there’s something that needs changing, I can do that. But I’m much more likely to choose the appropriate action step when I clear up some of the inner fog first.

2 Responses to “When the Outside Messes with the Inside”

  1. Amy Johnson

    Wonderful post, Susan Grace. This really is the process, isn’t it? Awareness and inquiry until one day we “forget”. Then re-awakening, re-awareness, re-inquiry. I’m going through this in my own life too–waking up and putting myself back on the path, day after day, whether the previous day was “good” or “bad”. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.


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