Many of you know that I went back to sugar during 2010. (It began with a whole can of raisins and went downhill from there…..) It was a humbling, frustrating, and very painful time in my life. I felt humiliated – I mean I had written a book about how I’d stopped eating sugar!
Pretty much everything in my life was falling apart. So many of my deepest fears came true. I was hurting, in pain, and I soothed my hurt with my old friend, sugar. I felt embarrassed that I went back to this old, painful habit. I felt confused – I really thought I’d done enough inner work that I was done, finito, over sugar. What was I missing?
So I went back to the drawing board. I looked carefully at my tools, at how I was staying sugar free. I looked at myself – what did I need? Why was I eating sugar again? I ended up rewriting my book, Overcoming Sugar Addiction, and dove deep to find a solution for the long term, for the life-long kind of peace that didn’t rely on willpower….
What I found was kindness…and my deep, deep need for it.
This rock bottom experience was the genesis of Overcoming Sugar Addiction for Life, the follow up workbook to Overcoming Sugar Addiction. Jimmy Moore, host of the Livin’ La Vida Low Carb Show, invited me back on his show to explain why the first book didn’t give me all that I needed for a lifetime of freedom from sugar. Below, I’ve shared some highlights from our interview.
You can also listen to a 10 minute excerpt of the interview here.
When you dive under will power and self-control, what you find is surrender.
At the deepest level, if you could ask me what was the biggest core belief that had me going back to sugar, it was that I lost a sense of my own goodness. There was still a lot of self-hatred inside. There was still a voice in my head that said, “Who I am is not okay.”
So when my life fell apart, I felt like it was all my fault. There was so much self blame. I felt like I should have been able to control what was happening. I was mad at myself because I couldn’t control my life.
Our minds will tell us all kinds of crazy things. That belief that, “I should have been able to control my life and somehow it was all my fault,” made me feel terribly guilty. Rather than looking at my pain, I just jumped all over myself and judged myself and blamed myself for it. Because I had tried to live so consciously and I’d written these books, I’d set the bar so high. I was saying to myself, “You know too much to fail.”
I hear this over and over. I hear from people who read hundreds of books, try every form of therapy or self help, and who may even be healers or nutritionists themselves. Then they feel incredibly ashamed because they aren’t – perfect. Because they can’t implement everything they’ve learned or because it’s difficult to put it into practice.
So if I could convey anything to you – what will make your healing journey out of sugar addiction easier – it would be to be kind towards your tender humanity. To be kind to your sweet, sweet self. To be kind to your sugar sensitive body. To be kind to whatever pain causes you to seek out sugar for comfort. To be kind to your pain, period.
For me, this meant practicing unconditional love – to love every single part of myself. (It sounds simple, but it’s not easy – at least that’s my experience.) Instead of trying to cut out, silence or suppress those parts of me that I hated the most – my sensitive parts, the parts that want to binge on sugar, my wounded parts, the parts that feel defeated, that feel hopeless, that feel scared, all the messy, imperfect parts – I wrapped them in my arms and said, “Sh, sh, I love all of me.”
When I love and care for all of me, when I show all my parts compassion; when I am the gentle, tender lover of my own being, I find my true self. I give myself what I’ve always wanted, and what I’d always sought outside of myself – in sugar, in food, in a never ending quest for a skinny body, in perfection, in self improvement, in control, in relationships, in money, in achievement. None of those things met my true needs, because what I was seeking was beyond. I was seeking the security of unconditional love. To rest in the belief of, “I am enough. I am lovable and worthy and precious in this moment. I don’t have to do anything to earn it or improve myself so that I am finally lovable.”
When I rest in unconditional love, I stop judging my feelings – particularly painful ones like fear or shame – and move to care for them. I care for the fear that drives the sugar bingeing and overeating. I love it like a lover, holding it so, so tenderly, like rocking a baby in my lap. It no longer runs my life.
I come home. And I am free.
I stop making war against my own heart. Instead, I rest in the solace of, “I will never, ever leave you. I am here for you, always.” And in that safety, in that solace, I have what I need – and I walk away from the sugar, at peace, and content.
Wanting more hands on help?
I offer several books and programs that will teach you how to use self compassion, self love and self kindness to heal the roots of sugar addiction. Not only will this approach help you heal your sugar bingeing, it will also help you create greater wholeness in your life.
- Overcoming Sugar Addiction, now in it’s 3rd edition, is my personal story of waking up from the sugar trance. You’ll learn what to eat, how to prepare yourself, and how to find healing. The 3rd edition reflects what I’d learned after going back to sugar in 2010.
- If you’re wanting help for the first few weeks without sugar, The 30 Day Lift is an audio program that will help you shift painful habits in the gentlest, easiest way possible – without will power or white knuckling it.
- Overcoming Sugar Addiction for Life will help you uproot painful beliefs about yourself so that you can leave sugar behind. You’ll learn exactly how to apply fuzzy concepts like self love and self compassion to your daily life so that you can create the joyful, nourishing life that you desire.
If you enjoyed reading this post, you may enjoy these posts here:
- This page is full of my top resources to heal from sugar addiction.
- A top 10 list of how to heal a sugar addiction – what to do first
- Addicted to sugar? 4 things you need to do to heal
- The 3 stages of healing from sugar addiction
- Follow this link to listen to the whole hour long conversation with Jimmy Moore. Jimmy is a great resource for health and nutrition, often getting into the ‘what to eat’ question that was only one chapter of Overcoming Sugar Addiction.
Free support forum:
It may feel hard to heal from sugar on your own. To support you on your journey, First Ourselves offers a free support forum where you can talk with others, get support, create community, find accountability, and feel less alone.
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