Yesterday, some of you joined me in refocusing on the basics of Key to Conscious Eating #1 -to eat only when my body is hungry. We wait for physical hunger again before eating each time.
Let’s keep that up today. I found myself so refreshed to make life that simple again. Easy…no. Simple yes! (I sound like a broken record!)
In the comments section, you can join us if you like. I am praying for anyone who wants to do this, in fact. God knows who is with us!
I know that some of you may be brand new to waiting for hunger before eating, so I don’t want to go on too quickly to the next Key to Conscious Eating. In fact, I feel like I am learning to walk all over again! It is very much like being a child…depending on our heavenly Abba to show us what HE has in mind for us!
As we go through all the 8 keys to conscious eating, they will be cumulative…meaning we will add the second key to our focus on the first. So let’s stay focused on this key alone for another day and see if we can get some things ironed out. I want to learn to walk again before I try to run! You know what I mean? 🙂
What kinds of things surface for you as you wait for 0? Do you find yourself obsessing? “Am I hungry? Is this it? Or should I wait longer? No, this has to be it. I am sure I am hungry…aren’t I?”
Ultimately we do want to be free from obsessing, but it isn’t uncommon at first to feel obsessed…or even for this to happen when we return to waiting for hunger for the first time in a long time.
I believe that prayer is the best antidote to obsession. If I turn my obsessive thoughts into prayers to the Lord, then what could have been something detrimental to my spirit and emotions, actually turns into a dependence on Him…and he loves it when I need him.
“Lord, is this what physical hunger feels like? Please give me your peace to experience it the way you have ordained. I know that you have made my body reliable and I have often eaten before I needed fuel. I want to learn again from you what my body will feel like when it is time to eat.”
Some of us may feel resentful when we aren’t hungry yet, but WANT to eat. I have found the best way to handle this is gratitude! With an act of my will, I can give thanks for all the blessings I can think of. Even when I don’t feel thankFULL. I do this either in my online gratitude blog or in a journal I have just for that purpose…or I can do it out loud as a praise and prayer to God. When I start praising God for His character and His provisions, something changes in me. I begin to become more humble and waiting for Him and His clear hunger signal in my body doesn’t bug me quite so much. I seem to move away from the attitude of “MY food,” “MY body,” MY MY MY and am transformed just a bit more towards a humble servant waiting for her good master. You might want to try that if you are like me at all and waiting for a 0 seems to chafe you, too.
Another thing we can do when we aren’t sure if we are hungry yet is to journal. I prefer to journal my thoughts as prayers to God as journaling to myself seems sort of empty. When I do this, I sometimes discover that I merely want the food as opposed to need it. One good test of this is if you have something in your mind that you will eat when you are at a 0, imagine if you didn’t have that something or other. If the house was devoid of oreos, freshly made snickerdoodles, or leftover mexican food…would I struggle with wondering if I was hungry right now? Sometimes this comes out when I journal. The truth is the presence of a food I like makes me want to be hungry, so I interpret anything in my stomach as hunger!
I can sometimes quell the tide of this “false hunger” by reminding myself I don’t need it now as I can have it and enjoy it all the more when I finally am hungry! The coveted food isn’t going anywhere! (Assuming you don’t have a teenager in the house who will devour everything edible. You may need to talk with them about it ahead of time!)
In my journal, it isn’t uncommon for me to write something like this: “Lord help me not to covet the feeling of hunger so I can eat. Help me to learn to wait on you…to busy myself with other things and to allow hunger to just sort of happen. Each time I think about hunger when I am not there yet, help me to remember people I can pray for or a scripture that I can recite or a praise song I can sing. Use my formerly obsessive thoughts about food to create one Holy Obsession in me Lord–YOU!”
What are some things you can busy yourself with while you try to forget that you are waiting to be hungry before you eat? 🙂
Sometimes our constant thought about food is a result of being thirsty. Try to drink some cool, fresh, water when you wonder…yesterday, I found that happened to me. I was really surprised!
Another thing I did yesterday….I knew that at 10am I was meeting my accountability partner and dear friend at a new coffee shop in town. I am not a coffee drinker, but I like hot chocolate. I knew I was going to want some of that. I wasn’t hungry for breakfast until 9am, though! I couldn’t wait any longer and I knew my normal breakfast was going to sustain me way longer than an hour. So I literally had three bites of my normal breakfast…just enough to take the edge off my hunger. At 10am I still wasn’t at a 0 again to have the hot chocolate! So I had some water. By 11am, I was hungry and ordered my hot chocolate. (I find their hot chocolate is like a mini-meal…it really fills me up I think because of the full-fat milk and whipped cream they use when making it.)
This worked out well for me as I was able to enjoy time with my friend, my hot chocolate *and* not need to eat again until 1pm! Planning a bit is important sometimes!
So what questions, comments, challenges, joys, victories did you experience yesterday…or today…as you resolved to wait until you were hungry before eating? Have you sensed the presence of God? Feel free to use the comments section to share. I read every one and am praying for us! Let’s pray for one another. We can do this thing!
Isn’t it cool how God uses something so mundane as eating to make us more aware of His presence?
After a crash and burn ain’t got it food day where I know I was eating outside of 0 I came home to your post…I think it will be good for me to go through this with folks…so…here’s to finding 0 today!
I am with you, Heidi. Thanks so much for sharing your heart. Your insight about coveting the hunger is right on for me! It certainly helps to hear it in that perspective.
My struggle is always the same. I seem to go into a daze and before I know it, there I am with food in my mouth. I know how crazy this sounds, but I’m totally serious. I really need to pray over this one. I hate to admit this and I hope it’s alright to mention this here…but I even ordered ‘The Weigh Down Diet’ from my library so that I could go through it again, since I honestly haven’t had much success with this way of eating since being on that program. I don’t know why though.
Each time I think about hunger when I am not there yet, help me to remember people I can pray for or a scripture that I can recite or a praise song I can sing. Use my formerly obsessive thoughts about food to create one Holy Obsession in me Lord–YOU!”I love this, Heidi! Thanks for the reminder. I’m really struggling lately, and so frustrated with myself…I know better! Your words above really spoke to me…and I take them to heart.Oh, dear Lord, please help us to remember that YOU are the one we are to obsess over. We want YOU, Lord.Thanks, again, Heidi, for sharing your walk through the basics again. I’ve been rereading my TW book and enjoying all of the little notes in the margins I’ve written. It’s good! I will pray for you – and us – as we honestly find 0 today…
Essy, I am glad that you felt the freedom to share this. Keep on asking God…ask God about everything. About reading the library book, about what makes the difference for you. Perhaps what he really wants from any of us, rather than a book or a program is for us to know HIM better. What is HIS character like? Who is HE? What response can I offer to him? Essy, I wonder if maybe God wants to show you something deeper about you, your view of yourself and your view about Him…and he wants to use the way you are drawn back to that particular book to illuminate that. Who knows? His ways are higher than ours, of course, but I would keep asking him. He is drawing you!
Karen Koenig, author of "The Rules of Normal Eating" also moderates a "Food & Feelings" board based on her book. After members discussed difficulties with stopping at 'satisfaction', Karen mentioned that we need other sources of 'satisfaction' in our lives beyond food and posted this:"Food is too often the highlight of the day or of one's life. Take a minute to think if that's true for you. Are you someone for whom life is full? Only you can define what engages you, what makes you feel energized and alive. If you move mechanically from one boring activity to another, if you're surrounded by people who don't make you feel warm and fuzzy, food may, indeed, be the most exciting, stimulating, satisfying activity in your world. It doesn't matter what your passions are … Food should bring pleasure for sure, but not be your only pleasure. Over focussing on food too often means that it's the center of your life, not simply an integral part of it."So many of us are BUSY, but are we busy doing what we love? Or do we use food to reward ourselves for doing what we think we 'should' do? We may say we are passionate about God, but do we feel excited about what we do with our lives? Do we really know what God wants us for our lives, or are we doing what we think we 'should' do if we're passionate about God? I know that I become too passionate about food during times that I dismiss my 'passions' as not important as other tasks. Food can become really important when I don't look forward to anything else in my day. Why would I delay eating until I'm truly hungry, if food is my only pleasure? Why would I want to stop eating, if I dread what I planned to do after a meal?
I’m a little behind….I didn’t realize you were going to be posting every day. This is great, though. I appreciate all that you’ve shared. I kinda messed up last night and ate a few too many truffles. I am trying to practice observation and correction and plan, by His strength, to do better today. :0)