Saturday, December 3, 2011

If Food Isn't the Answer, What Is?????

Because of the wise practice of one of my fellow OA members, I've started meeting myself in the kitchen at those times when I find myself there searching the shelves. As soon as I become aware of myself standing there (sometimes I haven't a clue how I got there....), I mention to myself, "The answer isn't here."

Sometimes I reply to myself, "Who cares, I'm going to eat chips, peanut butter or whatever anyway!" Other times I reply, "Yeah, you're right. Guess I'll make some tea. Or, guess I'll go back to work." I like the practice. It's working.

Today, though, I got to thinking, "OK, so the answer isn't here, then where is it?" I'm going to modify the practice a bit to include this question. Just for fun, I think I'll try to answer it for a couple of senarios.

I'm in the kitchen. I realize the answer isn't there. I ask, "the answer to what?"

1. Boredom. That's a biggie. I've always sought food when I'm bored. So where is the answer to boredom? Here are some possibilities:
--->change - do something different, something new perhaps
--->service - do something for somebody else, my husband perhaps
--->fresh air - go for a walk, play in the garden, sit on the deck

2. Fear. Yup, that's another biggie. Been wrestling with that one a lot lately, especially about installing and learning my new computer and operating system. So where is the answer to fear if it's not on the kitchen shelves? Here are some possibilities:
--->ask for help - this worked with the computer; I asked my husband
--->just do it - do it anyway; ramrod right over the fear
--->baby steps - do the thing I do know or do understand; forget the big picture

3. Being stuck. This doesn't happen so often. But sometimes I'm waiting on information from somebody before I can do something else. I get stuck. This one is similar to boredom. So there I am in the kitchen a little resentful for having to wait for whatever it is, with time on my hands to kill. So where is the answer to being stuck? Here are some possibilities:
--->keep a list - a daily to do list that includes things which only take a few minutes to do
--->meditate - use the waiting time to meditate
--->write a post - ha ha, that's what I'm doing right now! Waiting for a phone call.

OK, well that's enough for now. I'll see how this works and if I can expand the list. The steps are:
  1. I'm in the kitchen and it's not meal time
  2. I remind myself, "The answer isn't here."
  3. I ask myself, "The answer to WHAT isn't here?"
  4. I recognize the need or feeling or mood and name it.
  5. I ask myself, "OK, then, where might the answer be?"
It's a plan, Sam!


  1. I like this scenario. Mine is that I have to sit at the table to eat anything with a plate and all. So, if I grab a handful of chips, I have to put them on a plate, sit down at the table and eat them there. This has been working quite well for me.

  2. I have noticed as long as I'm beading or knitting I don't 'piece' at food! Having a new puppy has prevented me from doing either so of course when I get up to take her out, I head to pantry! Hmmmmm I also found I don't keep those 'special snacks' in the pantry anymore. Sure helps! good luck, robin! You're've come so far and you'll continue to go far!!!

  3. This is really well-written. Sometimes, it's hard to remember that it's not at all ... repeat, not at all about the food. It's always an underlying emotion we're seeking to tame, avoid, squash, or otherwise not feel.

  4. It sounds like an excellent plan to me. I like the way that you are always looking for solutions, answers to questions.

    I hope the book is coming along well and you are still pleased with the fruits of your labour.


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