Thursday, January 26, 2012
What do I get out of being overweight/overeating? What is the positive intent behind my actions?
I've gone through this thought process before. In fact, the whole concept of identifying the positive intent is one of my favorite parts of IOWL. I turn to it all the time--for instance, when I'm sitting reading email in the morning with my coffee instead of doing the workout I had planned. The minute I notice myself thinking "Why can't I get my act together??" I can turn it around to "What am I getting out of this?" Sometimes the answer is that I really need the quiet. Sometimes the answer is that I really feel too tired to run, but I can do a WATP workout. Or dance. Sometimes the answer is that I haven't had time to connect online lately, and that support is really important to me. The minute I can frame it as "what is my positive intent?" I get a true answer, and release that feeling of struggle.
On the weight front, I think I'm at the point where I no longer feel like I'm getting something out of my extra weight--but I still get something positive out of the overeating. Now, the overeating is nothing like it was once upon a time. I so very rarely have a full-on binge. But I do still eat just enough extra to keep the edge off my emotions, ya know? Not always, but often enough so that I'm maintaining instead of losing the last few pounds.
I thought I was pretty clear on my positive intent here--but I must say, I was really struck by the "general overeater personalities" Renee describes in Week 2 of Full-Filled. Complete with the standard "positive intent" for overeating for each personality type.
Some of them were so clearly not me. Rebel? Nah. I've done a few rebellious things on occasion--but not as a long-lasting pattern of behavior. Abused? no. The Mystic? heh. OK, I like dressing up like the airy-fairy types in flowing clothes and stuff, but I'm Miss Scientific Analytic Mind, or something.
The Giver? Perfectionist? Overachieving Multi-tasker? Ah. Now we're getting somewhere. I fully recognize and acknowledge these personalities... because I have shed so many aspects of them. They used to be tightly linked, too.... Gotta be a giver. Can't say no to anyone. But I'm such a perfectionist, how can I keep saying yes? Ah! If I'm obviously such a good person that I say yes to everyone, I must be totally multitasking. Which means that with so many tasks, obviously I have an excuse not to be perfect.........
I don't do that anymore. Not to a pathological level, anyway! LOL! I started shedding that when I started using Flylady a few years back. I discovered something interesting, too--if you don't give until you're empty, you can perform at a higher level. If you don't obsessively multitask, you can perform to a higher standard. Funny that after I shed the perfectionism, I finally find myself doing better with each task I *do* take on....
So where does that leave me?
Yup. That's me.
That is what I am fighting.
I swear, when I read the description I thought Renee was hanging out in my head again.
"The Fraud has the overwhelming feeling that, no matter what she does or how hard she tries, underneath it all she's just a fake, a pretender. She's managed to fool everyone up until now, but she feels it's just a matter of time before she's found out. She's always on alert and always fearful, guarding her shameful secret--that she's not good enough, not qualified enough, not up to snuff. Consequently, she is often over prepared and can become extremely defensive when her decisions or behavior is questioned. Always afraid she'll be "found out," she's often conservative in her approach to life, holding herself back from really going for what she wants and experiencing true fulfillment. Safety and security are key for her, and food seems to provide both. Eating works to dampen the pain associated with her feelings of inadequacy, while it momentarily distracts her from facing herself. The positive intents of her overeating are comfort, safety, and security.
Yes, I read this AFTER yesterday's blog about the conflict resolution journey being about comfort.
Oh, and the issue I mentioned there, that I asked my friends to help me with?
I took the plunge. (I still can't believe it, actually.) I submitted a proposal to co-present at a conference in my field this year (pretty major organization). And... it was accepted. [Minor freakout.] I needed input from my friends to help me with my bio.
OMG, I felt so awful writing my bio. I felt so unworthy, that the only degree I have to list is a BSc. From where? Well, I generally say I went to school in Boston. I might even add that it was a technical school. Interesting way to describe MIT, eh? But I felt like such a fraud there, too. Like they shouldn't have let me in anyway--I must have just been filling a quota since they wanted more women. For years I've felt like I should have done more with my degree, that I should pursue another degree, that I've wasted everything. It's just in the last 2 years that I've started realizing how much I enjoyed the path I eventually took....
Because of this feeling that I'd get found out, I've been afraid to do things if I might fail. This is the fear that I want to address now. And it scares me. To my core. But I'm doing it anyway. Because it's there.....