Healing Obesity Ailments
Food and love are intimately bound up, so at times of emotional loss or confusion, the stomach appears as a big hole that needs filling. The food squashes down our real feelings – the more we eat, the less we feel. At the same time we build a wall around us that few can penetrate.
Many cases of over-eating develop following deep emotional pain or loss and the excess weight is like a protection against further hurt. It also blocks out our own feelings and you become numb to what is really being felt inside. Grief or shame is often hidden beneath an obsessive appetite. Many women put on excess weight around their hips and thighs following sexual assault – by covering the sexual area the feelings are shut away. Obesity is about a longing for love combined with a fear of loving or being loved, perhaps due to past hurt, loss or pain.
Excess flesh indicates a holding on, an attachment or clinging, particularly to attitudes and thinking patterns that justify our behaviour.
It provides a false sense of security – a belief that we are safe from feeling or being hurt. It also implies a loss of control and/or an inner hopelessness or lack of self-respect. To shift the weight we need to explore our attitudes, what being heavy means to us and what feelings the weight is hiding.
Rather than focusing on what is wrong with being heavy, start exploring the benefits. Try writing down all the ways that being heavy is OK for you:
- What does being heavy enable you to do, or not do?
- Does it make you feel safe?
- Look at what attitudes or feelings you are clinging to?
- What was happening for you emotionally when you first got heavy?
- Were you being fed instead of being loved?
- Did you feel you had no personal power or had lost control and didn’t know how to regain that power?
- Do you enjoy feeling powerless?
- Were you in need of love?
Then explore how it would feel to be thin:
- How would it change you?
- What would you do that you are not doing now?
- What parts of your being would be exposed if you lost weight?
- Would it expose your sexuality?
- Does this feel scary or unsafe?
- Would it feel as if you had nowhere to hide?
- Does being thin imply having to be responsible for yourself?
- Does it mean emotional involvement?
The bigger we get, the more likely we are to reject ourselves and feel ugly or unlovable. Losing weight occurs through a deep shift in attitude, starting with an acceptance of ourselves just as we are. We need to give ourselves the love we long for and then we can start working on the layers of fear that lie beneath the excess weight.
Positive thinking on it’s own will not solve all of your problems, however it is one of a series of things that we all have the power to implement, which will get us on the path to leading the life we want.