Dieting and self-acceptance
When we hear of a new style of eating or approach to consuming food, it is often accompanied by the phrase:
“Will it help me lose weight?”
However, this question lends itself to the notion that you have a distrust and opposition towards your own body. The body does not grow fat out of incompetence or error but more is an optimal response to the physical and emotional condition that you may find yourself in. If we force the body to lose fat without the due care and consideration for the underlying conditions, we are essentially demanding that the body be other than it is. We are potentially sacrificing its well-being which the body instinctively strives for – for the sake of some image or ‘ideal’ of what the body should look like. Please don’t confuse this with body health. Obesity of course can cause more harm than good, but I mean each of our body’s has a natural balance to it.
If we allow ourselves to trust our body and the messages from our body even when they conflict with pre-conceived ideas about healthy eating we can also then trust when we are hungry and when we need to eat and when we do not. If we can truly become attune with our body we will know whether the body needs to eat more simply, richer nourishing foods or fast, like a practice so common in many faiths.
If we become more attuned with our bodies we will understand that we don’t need to eat the same volume our body has been accustomed to. Nor do we need to eat quite as much, rich, heavy foods. However, it is equally important to add that it’s just as easy to pervert a dining experience into a meditative one or one for reducing calorific intake. You may be advised to ‘eat and chew your food thoroughly tasting each mouthful and bite and by default you will eat less’. Sadly this will do nothing more than mortgage your chewing and tasting to an ulterior goal – that of a chore. Soon you will find yourself reluctant to practice this form of eating and all because you’ll afraid you have to eat less and become hungry. Rather than working with the needs of your body, you will find yourself conflicting with your body and fighting your appetites and not trusting the,
That said, techniques such as these and ones that encompass fasting, juicing, eating fewer meals per day will certainly ensure weight loss is successful, ideally weight loss should never be a goal or even a motivation. Such motivation is only necessary when we exert willpower. Eating in tune with your body does not rely solely on willpower but delight and reverence for your food. You only goal is to listen more intuitively to your body and give it what it wants. This may come in the form of rest, sleep, weight gain or weight loss. Your body can guide you. Your body after all, is a higher order of intelligence than your waking consciousness.
It is important to mention that despite any inferences, obesity is not a healthy state or way of being. Clinically and medically it can cause your body a multitude of ailments, illnesses and biological problems. That said, your body shape is integral to your current pattern of being. It’s your body’s proper and appropriate response to how you live and how you are. If you trust your body’s hunger this in in response to its environment and adaption to the conditions in which you and it exists. If you live in a society free from the foods of the modern world, it’s unlikely that obesity will be part of your community. Your body shape will be unlikely to change in your lifetime. That said, ones obesity is usually in response to biographical circumstances and whilst they may be deeply buried in the unconscious mind are in principle accessible to change.
So what is the secret to self-acceptance and improving your relationship with yourself and food?
When your relationship with food changes which is part of your way of being within the world, the adaption of obesity becomes unnecessary. The first step to change therefore is accepting yourself as you are. In fact, some obese people don’t eat as much as a slim person. Excessive calorific intake is not always the ultimate cause of weight gain. The body may be shaped in such a way due to psychological, medical, spiritual or physical conditions. Aversion to exercise may cause weight gain, a reduction in basal metabolic rate may be another. Equally so, there are other compelling psychological theories of obesity with the phenomenon of ‘amoring’ perhaps being the most cited.
This is the notion whereby the individual encases himself in fat in order to become shielded from the world. Obesity can also be an unconscious decision to make oneself unattractive to the opposite sex and in ancient Chinese folklore, weight gain is associated with being prosperous and well-established in the world and though good fortune were sticking to your bones.
Whatever the specifics, once the unconscious mind has decided to become obese it is sure to find a way, thus self-acceptance is the first step to losing weight. Accept yourself for who and what you are and slowly you will become more and more attune with your body and mental state to learn to nourish your body with what it needs and when in the volume it needs and helps you shape your environment actions and behaviour to become more conducive with this mind set of self-acceptance.
Here at Life Coach Near Me we offer the support for people with eating disorders through our Life Coaches and NLP practitioners. Each of them can help you with your goals and help you overcome psychological obstacles that are holding you back. For additional reading I would encourage you to look into the fantastic work of Dr Russell Delderfield from Bradford University for further reading and insights into eating disorders.