How To Be Nice To Yourself When You're Coping

When Binge Attacks Happen

I've had a stressful week and am currently in the throes of a binge. 

I feel like I'm in a strange transition time in my life and, even though I see things coming together in front of me, not having anything tangible makes me want to pull my hair out. 

But pulling my hair out isn't one of my coping mechanisms. Eating is. 

I felt the urge to binge come on at the beginning of the week but I kept trying to shove those emotions down. I keep telling myself, maybe if I ignore it, it'll go away. But just like in any other part of my life, that reasoning never works. 

I'm not going to tell you what I've eaten today because what I've had wasn't really the issue. It's the amount. My bingeing is no longer about cheating, but more about eating far more than my body wants or needs.

The Coping Cycle

Through my journey, I've come to recognize a cycle here. When I can't handle external stressors, it triggers my hormones to throw a raging party all over my body to destress. Those hormones always invite the same parts of my personality as guests and those personalities all have different ways of letting loose, habits they've been leaning on since I was a kid. 

You see, these different parts of my personality aren't a mental disease. We all have times where we're more confident vs. nervous or accepting vs. judging, etc. These are all different pieces of your make up and sometimes, those parts will be invited to show up depending on what's going on in your external life and try to make your life easier by any means possible. If we haven't taught them how to respond, that means turning to your coping mechanism of choice. 

But if you can become mindful and recognize who's showing up to the party and how they're acting, you can start to communicate with them to make better choices for you overall. Your body will operate better if you work with it instead of fighting with it. 

Working With Your Parts

I spend a lot of time working with my parts and, even though I get frustrated some days when we fall back on old habits, I remember how long it's been since my last binge. Rome wasn't built in a day and Rome is FAR less complicated than the human mind, so patience is key here. If I yell, punish, or ignore the part of me that's only trying to relieve stress for me in the only way they know how - they'll get resentful. They don't understand that what they're doing is destructive so their feelings get hurt  

If you acknowledge them and then work to teach that part how to act through mindfulness, it will eventually learn how to refocus their attention and party responsibly. 

How To Respond In The Moment

I want to urge you to be nice to yourself as you learn how to respond to external stress. These are coping mechanisms that have been in play for a long time and making a change never comes over time. 

This is the time to open the conversation with your part and teach it to journal, practice deep breathing, take a bath, or spend some time with friends instead of turning to food. The more often you do that, the more practice your brain gets to change it's response reaction to life. 

So today, I'll be moving slow and gentle. Communicating with myself, my parts, and my body to continue to pave the way to the happy and healthy life I want to achieve. 

If you're in the same boat, let me know by commenting below so we can help guide each other through it. You are not alone, in your head or otherwise. 

Love & light,

Carolyn Rachel