Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Pure Raw Joy of Letting GO

Dear Folks,

I feel inspired and happy today.

I had a vocal lesson, the 2nd, with the new teacher, this morning.

She continually pointed out how i 'hold on' or try to 'control' the sound, instead of trusting and just "letting go." (Singing is alot more than just trusting and letting go, but those two aspects of good vocal technique, which lead to freedom of singing and spin in your sound, have been missing from my technique). I explained to Dolores (my new teacher) how i often feel 'bolloxed' up or like my throat is squeezing the sounds rather than just allowing them to flow freely from me. Oh, how I desire vocal freedom! And with a few tips from Dolores on how to properly attack the note and then flow with it...i was suddenly singing freely, and in total amazement of how easy singing can really be.

It felt effortless. Yet...took MENTAL effort to achieve that effortless quality.

Mind you, this all took place at 10a.m.

10a.m.? I DON'T sing at 10a.m.

Well, i did, using this new technique.

And i sang WELL.

I always thought it was my reflux laryngitis disturbing my ability to sing early, but Dolores pointed out it may just have been my "holding on", my using "effort" instead of relaxation, my need to 'control' instead of just letting go that made it so difficult to sing early.

I gained so much from this lesson. And it got me thinking about other things in my life that i try to control...with force, instead of just relaxing and letting it happen. And the first thing i thought of....was FOOD.

In my desire to stop binge eating, i found 80-10-10, but discovered it too rigid to really STICK with long term for me.

Previously, i had been binge eating for nearly a YEAR on gourmet raw, never succeeding in controlling myself.

In an effort to bridge the gap between 80-10-10 'dieting' and gourmet full out binges, I started this blog. I have been trying to come to some kind of a plan which allows me to enjoy my tasty gourmet food when i want to, indulging in moderation from time to time, yet offering the lightness necessary to still lose weight, as in, lots of fat free fruits and veggies.

In trying so hard sometimes to lose weight by 80-10-10ing alone, i'd inadvertently set myself up to binge. I worked SO hard and tried SO hard to resist all of the gourmet goodies. When i finally gave in, it didn't STOP.

By not allowing myself to just eat...and be flexible...i'd deny myself the things i crave...and then when i DO eat them, KABLOOEY, i go WAY overboard, because mentally i'm thinking they are "bad" for me...bad bad bad...and i'd better eat it now while i "can", while i allow myself to, because i know i can't get it again....

Well, until the next BINGE.

I've been trying to decide how to handle this dilemma of binge eating. If i binge on gourmet raw, does that mean i should only eat 80-10-10? Well, I tried that and couldn't keep it up long term. And that seems like a fate i'm uninterested in.

Yet, when i eat gourmet raw, i have no control, i lose control. I've tried THAT route many a time, as well. Just give in and go hog wild. Which i do.

Okay. Let's put this on hold for a wee minute.

* * * * * *

I've been experimenting with the glories of JUICING. I found it wonderful. It's not an 80-10-10 thing to do, but i think Dr. Graham is idiotic for not validating juicing.

Juicing is AWESOME. But also takes alot of effort.

This morning, i didn't feel like juicing. And i didn't. But i did break out the BARLEY MAX and created a barley juice from that. (Just mix with water...and 5 mins later after all of the lumps are out, finally, you have juice.) It seems like a wonderful compromise for days when i just don't feel like juicing. Compromise is a beautiful thing.

How do i learn to compromise between 80-10-10 and gourmet raw? Well, that's what i've been going on and on and on about for months.

* * * * *

I was out shopping after my lesson and grabbed some grapes and snacked on those until i could eat a meal at home. That seemed like a wonderful compromise. I actually thought about doing an Awesome Foods binge. Or to go get a block of raw cheese. But i decided on something else. Something not 80-10-10, and something not gourmet binge eating. Something very much in the middle. A normal raw food meal.

I was in a 'letting go' mood - afterall, i just had experienced the glorious feeling of letting go vocally and the wonderful benefits i received from it: I didn't struggle with my singing, i focused in a new way, and let it happen. It felt so wonderful. Could i learn to do this with my FOOD?

So, why not try to just 'let go' for lunch. Let go of everything. And stop trying to control so tightly. And just go with the flow. Forget compromise, forget 80-10-10, forget binge eating, forget everything. WHAT did i WANT?

I really felt like a nori wrap with pickled ginger and wasabi. Pickled ginger is not raw, but it's one of those condiments i don't really lose sleep over. So i forgot all of my rules about salt, about fat, about nuts, about pickled ginger and just decided to make a meal i wanted. And I made a wonderfully delicious pistachio nut pate chock full of celery and red pepper and carrot and ginger and garlic and lime. It wasn't all nuts, but had lots of veggies in it. So, after all, that was a pretty good compromise, but the entire point was just to eat what i WANTED and to LET GO of control.

I slathered the pate on some nori with shredded cabbage, and man, oh, man, it was so delish.

I realized for this type of eating...the letting go type...i'd have to FOCUS in a new way, like i had to focus in a new way with my singing. So, I paid attention to my belly...and asked it when it had had enough. For that, one has to eat slow. I hope to do a better job of slow eating next time, but all in all, i ate WAY less than i normally would have had i been in binge mode, because i was being so "BAD".

When i was able to stop myself, I felt amazingly satisfied upon completing my meal. I put everything away, resisted picking, and my eating didn't go any further. I felt joyful.

* * * * * *

I have a coffee mug that i once sent away for from an internet site called "thintuition."

Thintuition is all about changing yourself from an overweight compulsive eater into a normal eater and losing weight, and losing your hang ups with food. Normal people eat what they want, they know when they've had enough, and they stop eating. Why can't WE learn to do that, too?

Here is what is written on the THINTUITION mug:

The founder of the program lost all of his excess weight following these guidelines. Not counting calories. Or reducing his fat. Or getting rid of salt. Or only juicing. Or only ANYTHING.

There is a LOT of wisdom in this approach. Just BEING. LIVING and EATING in the MOMENT.

Lunch felt GOOD. I let go, and what happened was not DISASTER or a BINGE, because i focused my attentions in a new way. I paid attention.

I think i will break out this mug for the next few meals and read it first before eating. I think it will help me to focus in a new way. And to lose weight ultimately and learn to control my eating...by not controlling IT. But by controlling ME.

* * * * * *

In my desire to stop binge eating, I started this blog. And the more I write and notice and do 80-10-10 and fall off and gain weight and go back and forth and binge and go back and forth, i am becoming more and more certain that learning to EAT what i like and enjoy is going to lead me to freedom. Everytime i binge OUT of restriction, i tell myself what i WANT. I don't WANT to be restricted.

And everytime i go on 80-10-10 i do so because i desire control.

Freedom from restriction and deprivation and control are really my goals. I think i've just been going at it all wrong.

Think of it this way. There is a continuum. On one end is HIGHLY DISORDERED BINGE EATING. On the other side, is, say, 80-10-10, terrifically controlled super ultimately healthy eating. I've been jumping from one extreme to the other in an effort to get freedom from restriction and regain control.

Can't i just live somewhere in the middle and achieve those VERY SAME THINGS???

Do i HAVE to drive myself crazy and lose weight FAST always in reaction to my weight gains caused by binge eating??? Can't i just eat what i want (freedom from deprivation) but savor and only eat when i'm hungry (control).

Sounds like the way to go to me.

* * * * * *

And furthermore, can't i just BE and BE OKAY with that??? Do i always have to be either consciously LOSING weight or GAINING it?????? Why can't just being ME...be ENOUGH?

You know, i haven't been on the scale in days...and i LIKE it. I don't know how much i weigh, but since i've been walking, feel confident i'm doing "okay". Where i'm at is where i'm at.

If i give up the goal of losing weight, just exercise and enjoy and savor my food, guess what? I'll lose weight.


THAT's my idea of pure raw joy.

* * * * * *

In summary, I've experimented with deprivation and it eventually leads to binge eating. I've experimented with eating what i want every minute of the day, eating because i WANT to and not because i'm hungry, NOT paying attention to hunger and fullness, and that also leads to binge eating. Both ways don't work. Predominantly, these two arenas have been where i have been dwelling. I don't want to anymore.

How about paying attention...AND eating what i want? And forgetting about losing weight? Just exercising blissfully, eating blissfully, loving myself blissfully and unconditionally.

What is SO CRIMINAL about weighing 250ish...and just ACCEPTING that...for now????

I feel like a cat chasing his tail. Everytime i lose weight, i gain it back. So what's the big deal if i just settle down, FORGET about losing and just LIVE RAW.

* * * * * *

To strive for perfection in my diet, 80-10-10 in other words, is just asking TOO MUCH for me right now at this point in my eating life. I'd like to live in the middle somewhere. AND perhaps AFTER i get my eating under control...I can refine it, if i so choose, to lighter and cleaner.

* * * * * *

Since i've been writing this blog, i think i have only managed to lose 20 lbs or so.

Can you imagine if i had JUST been enjoying myself the whole time, learning to control myself in this manner, how much further along i'd be?

The fact of the matter is that binge eating add LOTS and LOTS of calories. If i'd just learn to eat what i like, i'd be slashing HUNDREDS, maybe even THOUSANDS of calories, OVERALL.

And i'd be enjoying myself along the way.

If what i'm after is pure raw joy...THAT seems like the way to get there.

I'll keep my mug by me, and I think i'll check out that website again. http://www.thintuition.com/

Let me know what you think. I welcome your feedback.

xoxo michelle joy

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