For most of us food addicts, eating usually seems the kindest thing we can do for ourselves. We’re emotionally upset, we’re physically craving, and fixing that seems to be the very best thing to do. But, of course, it isn’t. It’s just about the worst thing we can do because it perpetuates the addictive cycle of crave, use, crave, use, crave.
To move into recovery, we have to break this cycle and allow our brains to rewire by continually and consistently choosing some other responses to the triggers of emotional upset or physical craving. We have to learn to call a friend or take a walk or pet a cat or dance or do silent screaming—pretty much anything but eating.
Doing this can be supported by a commitment to kindness to ourselves. We can see eating only healthy foods (fruits, vegetables, clean meats and fish) as kindness. We can see drinking lots of water as kindness. We can see exercise as kindness. And we can see not eating when it isn’t meal time as kindness. Not eating can become as important to us as wearing a seat belt, flossing, and getting enough sleep.
How might kindness support your recovery?