Type A. Control Freak. Perfectionist. Call it what you will, but I’ve been one most of my life. I blame nature. As the first-born of three, the laws of birth order granted me the controlling gene, right? As an over-achiever I have a list of accomplishments that make me proud like degrees from two top universities. But truthfully, being a perfectionist has never brought me much happiness and since I woke up to that reality several years ago, I’ve been trying to overcome it. Yes, there came a breaking point when I decided it was time to put myself into perfectionism recovery.
When you decide to make a change in your life, you’ll undoubtedly be tested. It happens to me all the time with this, but this week was a big one and the test came right on time as I prepared to leave for a workshop in Florida. From the moment I decided to take this trip, everything seemed to be against me from booking airfare to finding the right hotel room. I had finally worked everything out and was ready to go until my computer completely broke down the day before the trip. Yes, everything was backed up (… so maybe Type A can be ok sometimes …) But back to the point …
I have a laundry list of ways that being controlling gave me hell from failed relationships to impossible-to-tackle “to-do” lists. But it hit me hardest when it came to my relationship with food, and ultimately, myself. These are some of the ways my control-freak nature plagued me with food and weight. Maybe you can relate to some (or all?)
- I weighed myself everyday, if not, multiple times day
- I obsessed over the size of my jeans (and which brands ran larger or smaller)
- I compared myself to other women (especially the ones on TV and in magazines)
- I deprived myself of certain foods
- On the occasions when I was “bad” and ate those foods, I felt an overwhelming sense of shame and guilt
- I counted the calories I ate and subtracted them from the calories I burned – all day every day – and I don’t even like math
- I constantly told myself I’ll never be (fill in the blank) enough
It was beyond exhausting, Crazy-making, even. And I got to the point where I decided it wasn’t worth it anymore.
My health and wellness journey has brought me so far inward that I’ve been able to (mostly) release the need to be a perfectionist and the thoughts and behaviors that go with it. It’s something I’m conscious of and work on every single day.
Being able to free myself from that food stress and finally accept myself for who I am regardless of the size of my jeans is the sole reason I work with women to help them change their relationship with food.
Five years ago, if my computer had stopped working, I would have freaked out and wasted a lot of energy crying and being upset. Last week I noticed myself just breathing right along with whatever was going wrong and staying a lot more clear-minded than ever. I’m proud of that.
It’s the same way with food. Instead of obsessing over every last morsel I put in my mouth, everyday I trust myself to make good choices and I know I’m being guided. If things don’t go the way I want them to, I remind myself that tomorrow (or even as soon as the next meal) I get another chance. Being able to do that means I like who I am a whole lot more.
If you’re ready to change your own relationship with food, contact me to find out if my health coaching program is right for you.