Being Gentle Wth Myself

My therapist keeps reminding me that I don’t need to be so hard on myself. I often wonder what it would be like to go through my day without saying… you should’ve done this… if you would’ve only done it that way… why did you have to do X… blah, blah, blah. I don’t know if there are people who walk around with clear minds, but wouldn’t it be nice for one day, or rather, one hour, to have complete mental freedom? But then, I’d probably be bored. What else could I possibly have to think about, if I didn’t have these mindless, all-consuming distractions?

I have this running list, both on paper and in my head, of “things to do,” which helps my organization, but also fuels my self-imposed guilt. If, and when, I finish my list of things to do, offering my mind a chance to be “free” for a moment, then the body image obsession creeps in, tainting any possible relaxation for my overactive brain.

Did I mention I get headaches daily?

I constantly crave freedom from my mental obsessions, yet, because I’m unable, or rather, keep choosing to fuel these maladaptive thoughts, I beat myself up about having the thoughts—which perpetuates the unhealthy, cyclical cognitive process. Argh.

So, today, I’m going to try to be gentle with myself about these thoughts. It’s my perfectionism (and my ego) that tells me I “shouldn’t” be having these thoughts, and that my mind “should” be clear. Why shouldn’t I have these thoughts? I was shackled by an active eating disorder for nearly 17 years… how can I think that the very thoughts and feelings that created something that lasted so long will dissipate just because I’ve had some abstinent time? Ahh…the joys of unrealistic expectations. Oh, how they plague me.

Today, I will PAY ATTENTION to what I’m telling myself about what I “should” and “should not” do, and then “CHOOSE” to think differently… one thought at a time.