Food has no power over you. I’ll rephrase that: food has no power over you except the power you give it, as with everything and everyone else. I feel you mulling that over in your mind, thinking about how you and your situation are different and there are people and things in your life that have power over you that you have surely not given power to, they just have it. You hate it, but they just do. This “they have all the power” was a familiar lament of my past self until I learned how to release myself from the trap of this limiting belief. Doing so required mustering up courage I wasn’t sure I had- but DID, just as you DO– to wrangle myself out of it, rather than continuing to wait for the supposed trap-keeper to release me. How DO you wrangle out? By acknowledging that you always hold your own key and MOVE in that force by believing it by faith until you’ve accepted it as fact. Grasping the understanding that food has no power over you allows you access to even deeper understanding within- well beyond food’s non-power that is even greater than that.
A popular weight loss center used to run a post-holiday ad that urged people to “take back control”. They were so anxious to help that membership was free and the first 10 pounds were on them! Sweet! My problem with this is that it’s a lie. You don’t have to “take back” control because you were always in control. If not, who was? The food? You may have felt out of control (feelings are often NOT truths) running on auto-pilot and eating mindlessly, preferring to stay nestled in a temporary state of unawareness regarding your eating; maybe even your life. Been there! But make no mistake: food cannot take control of you. It’s neither bad nor good, evil nor angelic in its being. It just is what it is and all it can be is what you make it.
We all know the bottom line for weight loss: burn more calories for fuel than you take in and you will lose weight. Build muscle and you will burn more calories because muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue. If this is truly all that is required to control one’s weight, why is 30% of the world obese? Because it’s not about the food. Geneen Roth astutely sums it up: “It’s not about the food, but it’s not not about the food.” While it does matter what you choose to put in your body, the perception behind what you choose to put in your body will actually determine what you will put in your body. To perceive food as having power over you is to equate yourself as being incapable of accepting accountability for the actions in your life. Only in fully accepting accountability for each of our own decisions and choices will we ever fully access the freedom that is made available from understanding our own power.
YOU POWER YOU. Damn, that’s potent! You hold your cards, you steer your ship, you hold your reins! By acknowledging that YOU and you alone are the power behind directing your life to each desired destination, you will comprehend that whether it’s a plate of cookies, a glass of 25 year old scotch, or a dominant person attempting to convince you otherwise: you are powerless only by choice. The world is not overweight because of an overabundance of “controlling” food, but rather, a shortage of accountability- -the very accountability that brings empowerment to those brave enough to utilize it.
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