Karen’s creeping weight had become unbearable. She’d tried almost every diet regime, reward system, and program on the market.
Of course, none of them worked for long. She wasn’t attending to the heart of the matter – her unexpressed sadness, anger, and fear. Buried emotions were driving her destructive habit.
She was in my office because she needed help.
To really make headway on this insidious addiction, it’s beneficial to pinpoint and explore when and why the habit started… and deal with the emotions that were stifled at that time.
Karen told me that a couple of weeks ago she’d had supper with a neighborhood friend she hadn’t seen in thirty years. While reminiscing, he said he indeed remembered her… as a happy girl with a lot of energy and who was always in trouble. This recounting surprised her and stirred up vague forgotten images.
Karen talked about how she’d learned to put on a façade that everything was fine in order to cope with all the restrictions placed on her. Being daily barraged by cruel messages from a relentless step-parent sealed her bravado. Her pride kept her from letting anyone see how tormented she felt.
I proposed that the cheery demeanor worked well most of the time, because she indeed enjoyed life, but I wondered how she compensated and soothed herself from all the verbal abuse? How had that little kid learned to control her temper?
The answer hit her like a bolt of lightening. Pride kept her from expressing her pain and food became her comfort. She was joyous on the outside, but wounded on the inside. And Karen, a gal who repeatedly resisted my invitation to shiver or pound in session with an excuse that she was stubborn, started to tear up. The dam had been broken.
Would this revelation help or hinder her desire to get the upper hand over her over-eating? Sometimes unearthing “deep stuff” causes the urge to eat more until we really start expressing those emotions… And sometimes it produces a Divine Shift.
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