This post, much like this one, is about to get real so brace yourselves. The best conversations are the ones with good friends (or even strangers) when your guard is down, and you talk about real things not current events or the weather.
I held back from sharing too much because I never wanted this blog to be a diary of my day, but rather an outlet to share creativity & inspiration. However, the more you get to know me, the more questions I get on my personal daily practices. I love hearing from readers. The emails & comments have been amazing and many have asked personal questions about me which makes me want to get real on here more often! So here goes.
Growing up Catholic (Catholic elementary & middle school, uniforms and all), Lent brings up feelings of this dark purple scary time of ‘giving up’ something…pretty much anything you liked… only to start doing it again by Easter.
Clearly I’ve become a spiritual yogi, but my old Catholic Lent tradition has stuck because there was something I loved about it: the opportunity for consistency. Lent proved to my young self that I could follow through on anything I committed to. Lent hits the nail on the head with one thing: community. If you make a Lenten promise, you’re supported by billions of Catholics/those who are honorary Catholics for these sorts of things.
So as today (Ash Wednesday) approached, I thought sharing my commitment with Wonderland would serve us all well. It’d be way cool to create a little community here as we all commit to something for 40 days. Just like we did at the new year – speaking of which, how’s dancing going?
I’m committed to Causing Miracles, and I’m half way through her 40-day guide book for subtle shifts for miraculous change. In the intro to May Cause Miracles she answers the question, “Why 40 days?” Before I read her answer, I assumed Lent, but apparently 40 days has more significance than I was aware of as Gabby explains…
So if Lent didn’t convince you, Gabby did that 40-days is the perfect number to commit to today. So as I thought of my vices, I realized my diet is pretty darn green & clean & I’m even ‘off the coff’, as Gabby says. So maybe cutting something out wasn’t what I needed, rather adding something in.
Will you commit to 40 days of doing something? Share with wonderland because then you can’t go back!
I’ll go first…What am I committing to? My current vice. MCM‘s week 3 (on food & body) brought up some major things for me. Gabby guides us in MCM to get really clear on what’s still holding us back from being truly happy.
For me, my relationship with food is still kinda trippy – fears and habits that I picked up as a kid still haunt me. How I feel mirrors another line from the book’s introduction: “I’d overeat and speed through meals. I never tasted my food. I never even enjoyed it.”
When I read that I thought ‘oh man, I do that’…as much as I try to eat as yogicly using these. I confess, I too speed through meals, often not taking the time to realize that I am not only nourishing and energizing my body with every bite, but also enjoying the sensory pleasure eating provides us three times a day plus snacks.
Gabby guided me to see where these patterns came from – by seeing her root causes of food anxiety, I was able to figure out my own. As I read on I mirrored what she said again… “I could understand my compulsive overrating was a reaction to the childhood anxiety I’d picked up at the dinner table.” And found hope when I read: “I lived in this torturous cycle for years until I became willing to look at the fear underneath my behavior.”
And that’s exactly why I’m using Lent’s consistency to catapult my willingness into action.
For me, as much as I try to practice what I preach with mindful eating, I often find that I eat half my meal standing in the kitchen as I prepare it. Salad right out of the bowl, burning my tongue as I grab something hot from the oven, and then by the time I do sit down to start eating, I’m hardly hungry since I’ve been eating all along.
Then one of two things happens: either I rationalize what I was doing by thinking “I have to taste it to make sure I don’t need to add anything,” or the negative self-talk creeps in from childhood (i.e. ‘You’re a little pig since couldn’t wait to eat your meal etc…’)
It’s an endless cycle since I never feel satisfied unless I sit down to eat. So here is where I’m going to change: I am giving-up eating while standing up.
But really I am adding in 40 days of consistently:
– sitting down while I eat
– listening to music when I’m cooking
– making my meal look good, garnishing my plate (this is so crucial to food enjoyment remember this post)
– homemaking/ instagramming one meal a day (breakfast lunch or din) to hold myself accountable 40 days of making a habit
– pray, meditate, take a deep breath whatever you want to call it but taking a moment to realize you’re eating and actually get in tune to knowing how your body is feeling as you feed it
– most importantly not giving up
This morning, just after I wrote this post, I made a smoothie. And guess what happened? 3/4s of the smoothie was gone before I even stepped out of the kitchen to sit at my desk.
But I’m about to eat lunch now, and my point here isn’t ‘Hey look, I couldn’t even do it for one meal so let’s scrap this craziness & eat chips out of the bag standing in the Kitchen’, the point is we are going to mess up! (Yes even me, Miss Positive, says so.) But when we do, we can’t get upset and really fall off the wagon, we just pick up the pieces when the dominoes fall and start setting them up again.
So learn to fail fast – meaning don’t beat yourself up or give up or wait for the right time to begin again – just continue where you are! Being a perfectionist, I tend to give up, scratch it all or start over if I don’t do things perfectly the way I envisioned them. The way to be consistent is to not take the fails as fails, but rather, as lessons, and then keep going.