Wow. Where did the time go? My last post was at Thanksgiving and now I’m just one day away from my university’s winter break. Since Thanksgiving, my inner critic has been chattering away, telling me what to eat and not eat, counting calories for me, classifying foods as “good” or “bad”, and chiding me for eating anything on the “bad food list”. Of course, I know that this happens every year at this time. The voice of disordered eating, which I can normally ignore or attend to without judgment, suddenly takes control with all the access to holiday treats, parties, and meals with friends and family.
This morning I felt particularly bombarded by negativity when a friend started talking about the weight they want to lose. My critic said, “Megan, you should lose weight, too. You’re getting flabby again. It’s all those holiday cookies and candies. You shouldn’t eat any of it. You were doing so well. What happened? Why did you let yourself go? You have no willpower. What’s WRONG with you? Just stop eating that stuff and you’ll lose weight. It’s so easy.”
Sound familiar to anyone? I can almost hear your heads nodding.
On days like these, when my inner critic is so loud that all I can do is cry or exercise harder, I have to force myself to take a deep breath and TALK ABOUT IT. One of the best fuels for that inner critic is silence and secrecy. The inner critic hates it when we share his words with others because it diminishes his power. When we share our thoughts with others, we’re blessed to share our burden, receive empathy and understanding, and learn about how best to support each other.
So, today I share my struggles with you. Critic, be silenced! You have no power over me. I am so much more than what you think I look like or what you think I should or shouldn’t eat. I am a beautiful child of God, blessed with many gifts of the Spirit.
Peace, joy, and health,