I had been a Keto diet advocate for many years. I have friends who had lost extraordinary amounts of weight from sticking to a keto lifestyle, i.e. high fat, low carb and I wanted to do the same. It was pretty easy to stick to, most of the time. I liked the idea that my body would consume its own body fat for fuel and I would drop weight from my body. But I kept getting tripped up and failing. Regularly. The thing that kept tripping me up was the cravings.
O..M..G.. when those cravings hit – get out of the way anything that resembled a carbohydrate! The sugarier and sweeter the better! When those cravings hit absolutely nothing was stopping me from eating my way through bars of chocolate or lollies or crisps that I had stashed for just such events.
What I hadn’t realised was that every time I had a cravings binge-fest, I wasn’t just feeding my mouth but also feeding my own negative self image too. I was stuffing my emotions down so fast with food, they couldn’t possibly surface and make me face them. And to top it all off, I was a master at doing what do many of us do – eat something we think we “shouldn’t” then have a massive side helping of guilt to wash it all down with.
I blamed the keto diet and finally stopped.
I decided I would simply eat what I felt like for a while. Meat. Clean carbohydrates. Vegetables. Minimal processed. I was already intermittent fasting daily. I had already kicked sugar to the curb, other than that keto diet cravings monster that appeared from time to time. I was already avoiding dairy. My body started to settle down surprisingly fast. Those cravings subsided. Actually, that is an understatement – for me they have disappeared. This was all around the time of the first lockdown.
I found I had time to spend with myself.
What I noticed was the emotions I had around food. How I used food as a weapon of self loathing. How I used food to punish myself.
I found I was doing exactly what I talk to my clients about doing – hiding from emotions by using a distractor. My distractor was food!
Until Mother Nature hit the reset and virus was sent our way, I was always busy. Out 2-3 nights week with friends. Running my EFT School or seeing clients. Engrossed in marketing and fitting in time with my adult sons.
I never realised how great I was at shoving my emotions so deep with food under the guise of “busy”.
So, when I was forced to take a step back and spend time with myself, I was rather shocked.
My patterns of behaviour were so obvious.
Moving from one diet to another. Blaming its failure on myself – again.
Chasing the next trend although I always justified them as sensible approaches to eating.
However, I couldn’t escape the most obvious trend.
I never dealt with my emotions.
Each new “way of eating” simply gave me a new approved food list that I could punish myself with. Something else to hide behind to avoid my deepest fears.
My patterns of behaviour, however else we want to label was – simply put – an addiction.
I went from one addiction to the other. Which is extremely common is us humans by the way. Unless we deal with the underlying emotions, we will move from one addiction across to another. How often do you hear someone giving up cigarettes only to pile on weight? Chances are they have replaced smoking with food. Its not uncommon for someone who has given up illicit drug taking to replace that with smoking, or intense gaming. Anything that helps them to escape how they are feeling. And that’s because all addictions are about us seeking to distract ourselves, and in my case it was distracting me from facing how I was feeling. My thoughts about myself as a single 50+ woman, as an empty nester, my short round body, my wrinkles, and even my abandonment emotions from childhood.
Can you relate?
Maybe the content of my story isn’t the same as yours, but on some level, I bet you can relate.
Now that lockdown was here, and I had so much time on my hands I decided it was the right time to sort this out once and for all.
None of my weight was about which diet or “lifestyle” I chose. It wasn’t even about what I put in my mouth. I figured out it was WHY I was putting it in my mouth that mattered.
It finally made sense that by resolving the emotions and feeling that I had around myself and the events my from past, I wouldn’t feel compelled to stuff my emotions down with food anymore.
So, I started Tapping.
I did a round or two of Tapping before each meal. I had a variety of phrases I would use. “I am an adult and I choose what foods I want” or “food doesn’t hold the answers to my problems”.
My son gave me a phrase too “the cupboard [or fridge] doesn’t have the answers”, because he said he noticed when I was stressed about a task I was doing that I wandered to the cupboard and/or fridge and open the doors and stare in.
Maybe you could try it too?
When you find yourself nose in the fridge or cupboard, just do a round or two of tapping. Then see how you feel.
As time went on I decided that I was truly ready to face some of the indulgences I had that I knew weren’t healthy for me. I started with Twisties. Those mouth-watering yummy crunchy tasty little treats. Crunch Crunch Crunch. I just loved the crunch. So, I did a whole Tapping session with my friend Maggie on getting Twisties out of my diet. One session. One hour. I haven’t had Twisties or crisps or any other sort of snack that goes “crunch” since.
It’s so freeing to not be controlled by that noisy yellow packaging!
I started to feel in control of my eating – for the first time in my adult life!
I have journalled daily for years. I have tapped daily for years. But it was time to shake things up a bit with my Tapping and what phrases I said.
I wrote in my journal an emotion I felt. I really sat with myself and checked in. Then I tapped on that emotion. Just repeating that emotion. Nothing more.
Again, with the guidance of my good friend Maggie, I started to talk to my body in a way I had never thought to before. I asked my body to forgive me. In the past I would say “I forgive you body”, as if my body had failed me. Realising that the way I had treated my body meant I needed to ask my body to forgive me was lifechanging!
Tapping has been lifechanging since the day I was first introduced to it.
And even now I am finding even more ways, even deeper ways to use Tapping to change how I feel and the life that I lead.