I've never been shy about talking about my history with an eating disorder...Bulimia, to be specific. Ten long years, and clean since 2010. I hate it when people don't give you the dirty details ;) I was definitely trying to be an anorexic but it never took. Why? Because I felt empty inside. When you feel empty the most primal way to try to fill the emptiness is with food because that's where we feel emptiness physically. Understanding the difference between feeling empty (of _____ ?) and being hungry is a huge step to make in analyzing your patterns around food.
So in 2010 I was able to get myself to stop barfing up my food by:
a.) doing my best to win the tearful argument about "will I hold this food down or not?" after every single thing I ate ever for a few months. Many tears! Not to mention physical pain from turning my digestive system back on after a decade of abuse. Acid reflux, heartburn, constipation - all of it.
b.) not letting one slip-up derail all my progress. I would fuck up sometimes, of course, but I would do my best again the next day. This is croosh, fam. AA says relapse is a part of recovery, but also you have to start the recovery count back at 0 when you relapse? Hellooooo contradiction alert!
Yoga also came into the picture around there, with a year studying Integrative Nutrition right after that. I had developed a diet for myself that was clean AF. 99% vegan, gluten and grain free for the most part. One hour and thirty minutes of yoga every single day no matter what. The thing was, I was obsessed with my diet. I didn't like to go out to eat, except maybe Whole Foods. If I did go out for dinner, I would really repent the next day. I would run twice as long and juice all day to make up for my dietary adultery. From the outside I was a juice-sipping yogi vegan who loved herself - but on the inside I was punishing myself. Also, you can binge on kale just like you can binge on pizza. I still felt empty so I had to set my diet up in a way that I could eat all day without gaining weight. Kind of like how the real OG alcoholics just drink light beer. Why? Because liquor will knock you out. If you get knocked out, you can't drink all day. Better to pick something you can sip on all day long.
Let's speed things up a bit. 2015 my shit hits the fan, I start traveling at a lethal rate (filling the emptiness with chronic urgent action) and my precious diet and yoga goes right out the window. I'm sad and lonely. Sadness is expressed in the body as weight, btw. If you have stubborn weight, if you ask yourself "What am I sad about?" you'll be on the expedited path to releasing the weight, and if you learn to grieve, the sadness. Don't forget, there's a difference between thinking a question, and answering a question.
I assume that the weight won't budge because I'm not dieting and working out. I'm eating whatever I can, and exercising whenever I can - and it's a lot less frequently than working out perfectly every single day and eating perfectly every single day.
It's so easy to love yourself when you're doing everything perfectly.
I finally get a house in 2017, immediately go for a cleanse. Nothing happens. Weight won't budge. Five days on juice (fasting is v difficult for Pitta me) - and I gain weight. I'm doing yoga, I'm riding my bike, I'm swimming, I'm doing all the things I learned in nutrition school. Weight won't budge. This whole time I have a friend with me who can eat five types of deep fried and double wide per day and not gain a pound. I'm seething.
I start to get frustrated. Food is taking up some major mental real estate for me at this point. It's all about what am I going to eat, and how am I going to burn it off. I'm resisting sugar, gluten, meat and dairy which means it's persisting like crazy. I'm shame spiraling any time I give in to the cravings. I'm 25 full pounds over my usual weight and it ain't moving anywhere.
When I answered the question: What would my life look like if I loved my food and my food loved me? (this is your homework this week, btw) - I imagined being able to eat like a French woman. Appreciating everything. I imagined being able to pick whatever I wanted to eat off a menu. Not what I could live with nutritionally, not what was the cheapest - but truly pick whatever I wanted. I imagined feeling vital, energetic, and most of all - totally chill around food. There would be no food I ate that I felt bad about, no food that I would go for one bite of and all of the sudden the fog rolls in and I find myself at the end of a massive binge, standing in my underwear in front of the fridge.
I knew that could be a reality for me, I had the faith. I was just missing one piece of information that could help me fuse my dream to conscious action - and see results.
That piece of information is so powerful it gets its own broadcast to make sure you are able to integrate it now-now. It's true hunger, and it's what we'll be talking about in tomorrow's LIVE on @thebrujareport (11:11AM , MST) . It will be recorded and archived if you miss it, but if you attend live you can ask questions :)
Not only does it work to make that dream of freedom around food a reality, but you'll be so impressed with the intelligence of your own body that you'll have a hard time hating on yourself. win/win.
Looking forward to seeing you there! In the meantime - do your homework. Like I said, there's a difference between answering a question and thinking a question. Let's help you actualize your dream.
Know someone that needs to read this? This is a Bruja Report you have permission to pass on. Using what you've learned here with your clients? Credit your teacher. It will save you a lot of insecurity around being unoriginal in the long run. :) I thank my teachers Gabby Bernstein, Geneen Roth, the pantheon at Integrative Nutrition, and my friend @shhrawr_17 who put me onto true hunger, to help me end my battle with food.
You might think you work clearly under pressure, but I'm telling you right now - you don't.
You can't think clearly under pressure. When you're forcing yourself to churn out content under unreasonable deadlines because you believe that working harder = more money (not true), you can't think clearly. You can't do your great work when you're not thinking clearly.
Sure, life can (and most likely will) put you in some kind of dire strait that will require you to take action with what you have now and where you are now - but you won't get consistent results from grinding. And why grind in the first place? Because you think there's not enough time/money/you gotta do it all yourself? Is that thought based in fear, or faith?
It's the hardest thing to do, but you have to chill yourself out before you attempt to get your great work done. Your greatest work, your big money ideas arrive via INSPIRATION. And this inspiration is only going to arrive from two directions.
If you make it your purpose to get to and stay in one or both of those places, your personal eureka will arrive, when you're least expecting it. The steps will arrive one at a time, in the same way, right when you need it. It will not feel rushed. It will not feel chaotic. It will not ever ask you to compromise your well being for the sake of The Cause. This means you don't have ever have to hold your pee in for an hour because you just want to finish typing this one last sentence. It doesn't mean you have to stay up well past your bedtime or skip a meal when you're hungry or a stretch when you're achey.
If you can really practice this like I was forced to (thanks to a potent combination of being on the road and a BIG baby in the belly) it'll change the way you work forever. Once you know what it's like to work inspired, you won't want to work any other way. Why spend days toiling when you could go enjoy yourself like you have all the time in the cosmos (you do), and crank the whole thing out in an INSPIRED hour? Working like this bliss! But choosing to stop punishing yourself at the grind and getting yourself in the flow of inspiration can be easier preached than practiced. Trust me.
In business you will take every damn step by yourself, but Spirit can save you time by showing you the way. In order for Spirit to show you the way, you have to ask to be shown and be open to listening. If you're happy (in Joy) then you can rest assured you're on the right path. If you're peaceful you can rest assured that you're in the space of listening.
The other option would be frantically throwing shit to the wall in a furnace of anxiety until you finally melt down, throw in the towel, and force yourself to take a walk cause it's the only thing that will clear your head. On that walk you get the epiphany you needed because you followed your joy and walked out the door, not because you pushed yourself into meltdown mode. The grind was, is, and always will be totally unnecessary. I'm proof that this works - even and especially when it comes to big things, like buying a house.
Repeat after me (and repost if you're feeling it) : Rest ethic is the new work ethic.
If you put the project down when you're not feeling it, and go do what makes you either feel very peaceful, or very joyful - no matter what that is - GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION TO GO DO IT! Make your self care, play, and rest ethic the main aspect of your job and watch how you defy limitations and are able to produce a supernatural caliber of work by working for a short time, inspired.
Make a list of all the activities you like to do that feel like play, that make you feel joyful. Make sure to list some longer ones e.g. a long walk outside, and some shorter ones e.g. a long walk to the refrigerator for a special snack (pregnancy realness).
Do the same, with all the activities that make you feel peaceful.
Use this as your personal lifeline. Any time you're not feeling it, hit up some of these activities -and see what happens.
Contemplate this 2500 statement by Patanjali , and understand that if you want these powers you have to get inspired, and inspiration comes from 1.) Peace and 2.) Joy.
“When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.”