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December 22, 2010 / yogasabri

Another serving of….Insecurity??? NO THANKS!

Allright, I had to bring this up. A few days left before Christmas. Hannukah has just passed. Wonderful times, great athmosphere, and food. And then some more food. And then some more. So, I had to turn the attention to myself and start reflecting. Most of my peeps know that I dealt with and eating disorder in the past. I was bulimic for a little over 14 years.It’s not a fun place to be. So, I am standing proud for the battle I have overcome. The practice of Yoga has helped me so much, not only from  a physical stand point, but also psychologically. I practice self-acceptance on a daily basis and work to avoid self-judgment.

I have learned to know myself for the first time since I was a child. One thing that I had to acknowledge about my nature, during my days of struggle, was that my insecurities turned me into a people-pleaser. I could not see all that I am and the wonderful qualities that I can share with others. I could not see that others loved me for who I simply was. I always felt that I had to go out of my way to earn the love and affection of others. Now, one can say that at some level we all do that. We must make an effort to be kind sometimes. But I took things to a whole new level.

Particularly during holidays and celebrations, when invited for dinner or social occasions, I would find myself in a recurring, uncomfortable situation.  I would be enjoying the meal carefully prepared by my friends and loved ones. Compliment the delicious food. But then, I would have some more. I wasn’t hungry. I wasn’t craving it. I was eating more simply because I didn’t know how to use one simple phrase: No, thank you. These three magical words can change a life when used properly. See, I could not refuse another serving when offered. I had to eat it, because my insecurity and need to please everyone told me that I had to accept it or I would offend the host.

Some of you reading this,  must think this is a really stupid thing to do. Here’s the thing: a person with an eating disorder is a person with an addiction.  Food is not the addiction. It’s the need to fill a void. Whichever possible way. The host didn’t know that by accepting the meal I was abusing myself. I had to get rid of all I ate afterward. So, as I accepted the food, I allowed the anxiety of what was coming to take over me. And many times, a bulimic tries to calm the sense of anxiety by stuffing  his or her mouth (note the HIS. Yes, there are men bulimic. It’s serious people). It’s a vicious cycle.

However, there is more to this. As I learned to recognize my triggers, my lack of self esteem, and the behaviors triggered by my insecurities, I started noticing even the insecurities of others. I had a little epiphany. Truth is, when the host offers another serving, most often he or she is just being polite. However, often, a simple “no” is not enough. Sometimes the host insists that you take another bite. Now, at that point, it’s the insecurity of this person that interacts with you. His or her need to hear the affirmation that the food is good, the hosting was wonderful and what not, pushes the person into your own privacy. Your body knows when enough is enough. By allowing the host’s insecurity to take space, we ignore our body, therefore we allow our own insecurity to take space.

So, please, believe me when I say that you do not have to be pushed. You do not have to be forced. A kind NO THANK YOU will not hurt. Enjoy your meals. Enjoy the company. Do not sabotage yourselves. It’s not worth it. If a person gets hurt by you being full, this person has other issues to deal with and was truly not genuine with you in the first place.

Once again, I wish you nothing but joy, now, and after the holidays. You are responsible for how much joy you allow into your life.

Namaste, and love, always.

Sabri

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