Just wanted to try to write down a timeline of the tiny steps I took over the past 10-12 years in order end up in a place to finally be relieved of disordered living, i.e. obsessed about weight. I used to use the analogy in my head that I felt like I was on a treadmill, sprinting, and as hard as I was trying I couldn’t get off. The steps below document my slow down. Establishing each of these steps into patterns felt to me like submitting a mountain. Each time, I felt like I had finally “arrived.” Each time I felt another tiny bit more relief.
(I only remember the things that made the most impact.)
2004 (Spring) – repeated the thought, “It’s okay” every time I felt self-conscious and/or self-hate (I really just hated my body, but at the time I could not differentiate between me and my body). I thought about my dad when it got really bad and that always helped/helps.
2009 (May) – started going for a walk first thing in the morning, instead of eating right away. By “eating” I mean, over-eating. Result: a little tiny moment each that I liked myself and didn’t have to run for it.
2009 (Summer/Fall) – Stopped depriving myself of what I really wanted. Instead, I put focus on deciding what I really wanted to eat and then eating that. Result: began long, slow process of eliminating shame about food.
2010 – Began eating sitting down, with the lights on, never when watching TV, only keeping food around I felt good about eating (still never put any food “off limits”, just made it further out of reach), always dividing stuff into portions; generally, paying more attention to my food and enjoying it.
2012 – embraced the concept of budgeting for food. (For example: eating a little healthier or a little less at the next meal after a meal when I didn’t eat quite so healthy or just ate too much. Or “saving up” for a special treat.) Result: began eliminating over-eating.
2013 – stopped weighing myself! Only took me 9 years to truly stop. I had tried before, but then my weight would spike, so I’d go back to weighing myself. It was the “perfect” tool to shaming myself into excessive running. Good riddance. Result: so much less time spent thinking about weight!
2014 – stopped eating sweets, except when I really wanted to, and then would eat with protein (without guilt). Then… I stopped craving sweets. And in turn, had a significantly easier time eating just wanted I need and truly enjoyed.
2015 – went grain-free. No cravings. No self-hate. Result: freedom.