100 lb. Club - So, your an compulsive over eater, now what???

03-02-2004, 05:17 PM
Well...that little troll called "addiction" or "lack of control" or what ever name you want to call it...has showed her UGLY face again, but this time not through food. I gave up one addiction for another...and I thoght it was funny, HAHA...but it really isn't. My hubby and I are always arguing about $$, and my "impulsive" shopping habits. I have gotten way much better than in the past...But, I really can not help it. I mean, just like when I was eating compulsively.....I would get a "high" off the food...or what I thought was "control", the same things happenes to me when I shop. I never, never, never pay full price for anything (I feel like a TJ Max commercial)and I strive on getting a hellava deal, or a steal. I always rationalize it as..."it is educational" or "it is music, books, kiddos clothes" things that my hubby can not argue about. I can always make food shopping fun! It is becoming dangerous since a lot of supermarkets are becoming Super centers...and they carry everything. I even have a little trick to make the blow of the credic card statement not look so bad....I will pay the Walmart purchase half cash and half credit card. So, you know how when you have a bad day...and you typically feel better when you go shopping...that is not a good thing....because in my case, it becomes a habit. Geeze...Corporate America is jumping on the "shopaholic" bandwagon...and make Halmark cards, books, t-shirts, apparel...with the logo that screams "shopaholic"....like "Born to shop" or "When life gets tough, the tough goes shopping" lO.K....I hope you following me and see where I am going with this...

So, after spending $130.00 on Amazon.com with the intent of purchasing one thing...I have had enough. I really have a problem that I just can not snap out of. Because I am trying...and not getting anywhere :( My mother has always said that I can do anything I ever wanted when I put my mind to it...which is true...and I like to call that "my passion". But, I am also known to give something 150% and then drop it like a hat. You know what I mean....? I know that is a problem with discipline, and consistency....but I am working on all of that.....

So...to make a long story shorter....I made the first step to get help...I am seeing a councelor who specializes in eating disorders. Inspeaking with her today, she said that transfering one compulsion for another....is quite common...but we need to find the root of the problem. Because if it isn't food, and not shopping, it could be drugs, alcohol, sex...you name it...although hubby wouldn't mind the last compulsion...LOL. I will keep ou all posted with my progress....

Thanks for listening!

03-02-2004, 05:29 PM
Good for you for recognizing what's going on with your eating and shopping. I'm glad you're going to see someone who can help you get to the root of the problem. Once we understand why we do something, then we become better able to develop other, less harmful, strategies to cope.

I'll be eager to hear how you're doing!

03-02-2004, 09:32 PM
oh gina..l what a huge amount of insight and courage you're showing here...

and just by a strange chance, i went to a seminar this weekend on zen and the art of weight control. all kinds of information about addictive behaviors

and here's some of the stuff i came away with:

as we think so we become [in fact, i might put that in my sig]

and there are some people for whom a cookie is just a cookie. they can walk past a bakery without even noticing it. and then there are others who go into the bakery and have to buy stuff.

to an alcoholic, someone who can resist a drink is very very strong and in control. but to the nonalcoholic, they're not even thinking about that drink. it's just not in their radar.

soooooo... based on this, i'm trying to transfer the attitude i have about gambling [i just have absolutely no interest in it, and it makes absolutely no sense to me!] into an attitude about pretzels and other things that send me into a binge.

and i have to do more investigation into this.. it was really really interesting....

03-02-2004, 10:30 PM
as we think so we become [in fact, i might put that in my sig]....

Jiffy, I just love that. The mind is a powerful thing. Mine let me quit smoking a yr ago, yet the food issues prevail. I just don't get it.

How did you find this seminar? Was it costly?. I am interested, but I am hesitant to spend more $ on my eating issues. If could get back everything I ever wasted on myself, I could buy a new me! :s: :s: :s:

Anyway, thanks for the quote. I will try to put it somewhere I will see it everyday :thanks:

03-02-2004, 10:52 PM
This is all very interesting, thanks you all for sharing.

03-03-2004, 12:54 AM
Yeah Jiff....tell us more about that seminar...it sounds so informative and insightful!

03-03-2004, 01:41 AM
it was offered by the weight loss center i go to. the one where i moderate the postop support group. anyone can come [so donna.. the next time, maybe you can come for a visit!].

a psychologist did it. i have no idea if others are doing it. oh wait. she gave us some references. there's a book coming out by a woman who specializes in treating addictions through zen. it's by sandra weinberg and is called Healing the HUngry Heart: Healing Compulsive Eating from a Zen Perspective.

she said it might not be out quite yet, but is due out any time now.,

she also gave us a handout. and let me retype this..

how to say no

certain practices can be adapted to help when food cravings arise. What is important to remember is that in any moment, we have options, the practice is to find the skillful means for each situation.

1. intention is the key. everything else rests on this. We all have different triggers for overeating: know yours. Also keep in mind what your goals are - not to eat, not to go off your diet - and which foods are important for you to avoid. Consider which emotions make you feel the most vulnerable and when you fell that way, turn to meditation, affirmation, or visualization for support. Then, set and hold the intention not to pick up a trigger food.

2. Substitute the thought of food with the thought of something more important. For example, visualize the face of someone you love, or feel gratitude for all the gifts you have in your life. Imagine yourself engaged in some pleasurable activity, see yoursef on that vacation you're looking forward to, for example. The Buddha says, "As you think, so you become."

3. Mentally follow the entire process of giving in to the desire to eat. See the whole cycle from beginning to end. If you take the first bite, where will that lead? What has happened in the past? How will you feel the next day? If, instead, you refrain from eating, how might you feel?

4. Ask yourself: What do i really want right now? What is the feeling behind the urge for food?

5. Stop whatever you are doing at the moment you feel the urge to eat, and do something entirely different: stretch, yawn, get up and walk, make a phone call. even a simple action can break the trance.

6. Cultivate willingness to ask for support. In Buddhist practice, we take refuge in the sangha to support us in our practice. for support in avoiding destructive eating, we can phone a friend who understands our intention, for example, or join a support group for overeaters. On an everday level, support might simply mean asking the waiter to remove the basket of bread from the table.

6. Maintain nonjudgement. If you overindulge, don't punish yourself. You will only make your suffering worse. Instead, observe your behavior with a compassionate heart. Then remember that instruction is the foundation of practice: Begin again, with wise intention.

i wish i could give proper credit for this page, but she didn't provide the reference.

there was also a meditation:

Start by taking a few deep breaths. With a half smile on your face, imagine that you are inhaling a sense of calm and exhaling any tension, any thoughts about food, allow the breath to return to normal. bring your attention to your belly and the inner sensation of the breath rising and falling in that area.

when thoughts of eating or of a speicific food come to mind, note 'thought arising.' become aware of the pleasant or unpleasant feelings that accompany the thought, then shift your attention back to the body, experiencing whatever physical sensations arise. Cultivate moment-to-moment awareness. not resisting, not forcing. just this just this.

thoughts come and go. feelings come and go. allow yourself to experience the transient nature of thoughts and feelings, welcoming everything that arises as just this, not me, not mine.

03-03-2004, 01:59 AM
Thank You , thank you, than you for taking the time and typing this for us. I so appreciate it...more than you know:)

03-03-2004, 09:35 AM
hope it helps!!!'

and for today.. another effort in the gambling-pretzel transferrence!!! it would probably be more challenging if i were at work instead of sick at home!!!

Amanda Panda
03-03-2004, 10:20 AM
Great stuff!

Thanks Jiffy pop and Gina :)

Love Amanda xxx

03-03-2004, 01:55 PM
Gina, thanks for bringing up this topic.

Jiffy ... thanks for taking the time to do all that typing. Number 3 absolutely SPEAKS to me. Often we are told to use "visualization" to help us focus on what we want to achieve (being healthier) ... but sometimes, at least for me, that goal is too vague or if I'm thinking weight loss ... I'm a long way from goal ... so it doesn't have lots of meaning. But, this tells us to think about NOT resisting and think about the entire process and how I'll feel after the fact. (Like "why did I do that?!?!"). It makes a lot of sense to me and hopefully will make me stop before I give in.

terrific pig
03-03-2004, 11:29 PM
Gina, as ususal you have raised a thought provoking topic. I think eating and shopping compulsively are very much alike - you start thinking about that delicious thing you want to put in your mouth, and those thoughts seem to squeeze out everything else from your mind. There's no room for sadness, boredom, frustration. Same with shopping. You think, "If I only had this or that, I'd feel so happy, fulfilled, beautiful." The thoughts of having 'the' item block out all other thoughts from your mind. I am compulsive in my eating and my shopping, but I'm working on it. I've been in control of my eating for about a week and a half, and it feels good not to be bingeing, beating myself up emotionally, bingeing again because, "Why not? I can't control myself anyway." The shopping is just as hard for me to control as the eating, but I'm trying.
Thanks again, Gina, for the 'food for thought' -- no calories!

03-04-2004, 12:30 PM
Thanks Jiffy for posting the info. from your workshop! Love #6...Might even have to put the quote "Begin again, with wise intention." in my signature, if you don't mind?

03-04-2004, 12:58 PM
so glad you're all finding this helpful. but one thing i DIDN'T mention is that those steps are actually a cycle. it starts with the first one, and proceeds through all the rest, and then back to #1.

i was really blown away when i heard these things on saturday. some of it i'd been doing, but there were several other things that i KNEW would be helpful as well..

it's all a process, part of the journey.

and kris... feel free to add whatever you want...

03-06-2004, 08:57 AM
Thanks so much Jiff. I've already cut & pasted your post. If that seminar is ever back in the general area, let me know, I would love to go. Your a peach!!!!!!!