“If I took all the time I’ve spent thinking about calories I could’ve learned Japanese!”
Through my healthy, mindful seasons and my not so healthy, not so mindful season it was sickening when I read that sentence and realized how much French I could’ve learned by now. Just how much time we women can waste worrying food, how much we ate, what to eat, when to eat, how to eat to fix how we ate earlier - it is mentally exhausting.
One study shows women think about dieting more than relationships and sex (if that gives you guys any ideas just how much we obsess over it). After trying nearly every cleanse, elimination diet and every quirky personal tactic I could to tackle discontent with my body, I discovered at the root, food was really not the problem. Organic, gluten-free, local or not, there were deeper issues with my frustrations than just eating right. Linked to all my pitfalls, and weight gain were my warped emotions, mind-set and outlook on life.
It’s no news now, but “dieting” isn’t the permanent solution. Still I constantly found myself in a cycle of “needing a good cleanse” or “detox.” Call it what you will, but ultimately it was making life more difficult than it needed to be. Why do we feel it necessary to restrict so much just to wind up overindulging and again return to this “need to cleanse myself”? It (and I) was becoming nonsensical. In the past I had embraced a healthy way of eating and living, yet somehow stumbled back into this bottomless pit of trying to perfect the way I eat. It was time to explore these innate wrestling matches with my body that I couldn't seem to shake off and simply stop dieting, detoxing, cleansing... you get the picture.
We think about food and our weight way too much. We’ve allowed an obsession with perfection to either make us legalistic in our diets or just throw in the towel altogether. But there is something much more rewarding than perfection. Truth is your ideal body will never be perfect, because NO. ONE. IS.
While you can’t be perfect (and do not need to be) there is something more enriching and freeing. It is about “living,” not perfectly, but better. We have to start somewhere.