April 30, 2013
As I mentioned in my review of the Intuitive Eating Challenge last week, I’d yet to have my final phone call with Jamie. As I picked up the phone, I was prepared to talk about the rough week I’d had, eating-wise, how I’d let stress and emotions get to me and just been a mess all around. When we started talking, however, food was not mentioned once, intuitive eating was not mentioned once, and that’s why I wanted to come back to the challenge and share one more thing with all of you that I’ve learned through working with Jamie.
The idea behind intuitive eating is following your instincts, trusting yourself, appreciating who you are right now and not thinking so much about every little detail. What I realized during this phone call that the idea behind intuitive eating is really how we should think about all aspects of our lives: our careers, our friends, our relationships and our every day.
Growing up, I was taught that appearances are important. I’m not just talking about what you wear and looking appropriate, but how you act and come across as well. Obviously manners were important, but so was making and sticking to commitments, doing well and trying hard in any activity that you attempted, making a good first impression, doing well in school, having a good application or resume; the list goes on and on. I’m not saying these aren’t important aspects to life or good values to learn, but they were all very important to me. Appearing “perfect” became very important to me.
Recognizing that aspect of myself was necessary, but the most critical thing is learning how to place a lower value on my appearance to others. A piece of advice that Jamie gave me was to check in with myself throughout the day, ask myself why I’m doing the things that I’m doing. Am I doing this because of what someone else would think of me?
Why am I wearing this? Why am I so anxious to talk to that guy? Why am I avoiding this subject with someone? Why am I going out when I don’t feel well and just want to go home? Why am I not speaking up if I have something to say?
I realize this sounds like a lot of questions, but stopping and asking myself just a couple of these questions each day, has already made me relax a bit and let my guard down. The point behind this exercise, and of this post really, is to learn how to just be your “true and honest self.”
The reason we all try to keep up appearances is to avoid rejection, but if you love yourself and are confident in yourself, then being rejected won’t shake you up or upset you as much. Why is that? Because this “true and honest self” is the person you really are. This is the person you want people to love and appreciate. If they can’t love and appreciate you the way you really are, then they aren’t the right people for you.
Having that confidence in yourself and believing in yourself is how you put yourself in situations that make you happy and surround yourself with people that make you happy. If you have to “keep up appearances” for someone to like you, is that person really right for you? I don’t think so.