Fleetstreet is thrilled to offer this excerpt about how to stop dieting from Auric Living: Happiness Is Counting on You, by Lee Marie Jacobs.
As I progressed through high school, university, post-grad wrk, and the beginnings of a career, I unconsciously overfilled my schedule and my life as a means of keeping my spongy energy system under wraps. The stuffing including shopping, eating, running, rushing and keeping chronically busy. Little did I realize that with practice and care, my highly intuitive nature would actually become my greatest gift. It was thanks to Dr. Judith Orloff, MD, a prominent psychiatrist and the author of The Empath’s Survival Guide, that I could finally make sense of the emotional weight I had been carrying for so long. I strongly related to the characteristics and behaviors of what she describes as an “intuitive empath” – that is, someone who is deeply sensitive and intuitive and who experiences heightened emotions and perceptions. An intuitive empath also emotionally takes on the feelings of others and stores them in his or her own emotional body. This is where the chronic feeling of heaviness comes in because intuitive empaths are carrying the addition emotional burdens of other people.
Unsure of how to rise above this buffet of energies in my body, I soothed myself by emotional eating, which I counterbalanced by obsessing over physique and physical fitness and by staying extremely busy. I found myself saying “Yes” to every demand for my time while also energetically inviting the auras of everyone around me for a piggy-back ride. Every day seemed to be strangely similar: the same drives, the same foods, the same people, the same experiences. Although details differed each day, the pattern was the same. It was like the movie Groundhog Day, where the main character finds himself trapped in the same day, destined to repeat it over and over without any kind of escape in sight. This isn’t a far stretch from the reality of many of us.
This was my Groundhog Day:
|Alarm clock wake-up||Worry and guilt all day||Eat my feelings|
|Inhale food without chewing||People please||Rush and do more|
|Stress over over-filled day||Answer the need|
and call of others
|Worry about many things||Ignore intuition because|
|Stress over next day|
|Feel guilty about many things||Manage monkey mind||Rush or limit|
|Skip self-care||Be good, liked and nice||Feel anxious|
|Panic over to-do list||Take on too much|
I struggled to understand how decades of schooling, a master’s degree, and growing professional credentials in my field could result in such uninspiring lifeless and robotic living. How could someone with degrees, intelligence, and talent fall slave to an existence void of lifeforce and creativity? Of course there were many joyful experiences and heaps to be grateful for, but a key question kept playing in my brain: Is this really what I incarnated for? Am I the only one who feels something is very off about the structures and systems of society? I was blessed with the most loving family and friends, but for the most part, I was living each day with a big question mark: When does life begin? And, more privately, Is there not a greater purpose than this? When was it time to authentically spread my wings?
Lee Mari Jacobs is a certified yoga and Pilates instructor as well as a clinical nutritionist. She has been featured in Glamour, The Marilyn Dennis Show, The Morning Show, Breakfast Television, Women’s Health, Dr Oz, Entrepreneur, Forbes, Time, Inc., and more.