Friday, August 21, 2009
Cleaning, clearing & then rebuilding old rituals takes courage, a hot desire, commitment & persistence. Remember, a good part of any ritual is on auto-pilot & you may find yourSelf inside the ritual without even thinking. However, this does not mean that you have failed & should give up. It simply means that you need to wake up earlier. Just because you find yourSelf inside a negative ritual is no reason to stay....just the opposite. It's a reason to leave. As you dismantle your old ritual & build a new one, it will be even easier to change positions.
This was a big issue for me, especially in the beginning of my wellness trek, because my ritual was very old, having so many tangents that were added over the years of it's existence. I thought of it as a big, heavy tapestry, even bigger than mySelf. In the past I had tried to change some of the threads, but no matter what I did, it never seemed to be enough to effect a long-term change. Now, I had no choice. My physical health had taken a toll & the tapestry had to go.
There are different approaches to making lifestyle changes & dismantling habits. As I mentioned above, I had tried to remove some of the ritual threads, but had been unsuccessful. I also found this to be self-defeating, as it reinforced my failure. This time I had no choice but to throw out the ritual. In the practice of self-hypnosis the chosen imagery can be very quick & powerful. I knew that I would discard the ritual tapestry, but I also knew that I did want to save some of the threads, especially the ones that were symbols of my resilience. Over the years I fought through some changes. For example, I had resolved my issues with letting others make my food decisions for me. I no longer ate something because someone would supposedly feel bad if I didn't eat it, or if everyone else was having it, so therefore I needed to have it. Those were important threads for me to keep & to weave into my new tapestry.
My old tapestry was very emotional, wrought with anger, sadness, depression, worthlessness, helplessness & hopelessness. Some of my emotions were very connected to specific people & so I decided to build an alter of sorts to honor those who were responsible for teaching me some of my most valuable lessons. Remember, we learn through positive & negative examples. Here was an opportunity for me to practice forgiveness, thereby setting me completely free from those who had held the key to my prison for so long. This part of my new ritual & tapestry reminded mt that I held no anger towards anyone, including mySelf. The past was over, the path ahead was clean & clear & I was about to develop a new healing garden that would house my ritual & tapestry, for I would be weaving many new experiences into the fabric of my life.
You may wonder about the old ritual popping up on auto-pilot & finding mySelf in the middle of it. Yes, this did happen & still does at times, but remember, I am no longer the same person & I have the Key to get out. Here are some of the things that became part of my new auto-pilot ritual. There were times when forbidden foods seemed to magically appear in my supermarket basket, but they were returned to the shelves or left at the checkout. There were times when the desire to hide & binge pushed themselves to the front of my mind, but I now had a new ritual garden....one that was growing powerful roots & so these seemingly negative thoughts became opportunities for me to strengthen the new rituals. And, you can do the same. Allow your own mind to guide you, as I invite you to walk through my therapeutic shifting process with me.
But first I'd like to welcome new readers...
A NOTE TO NEW READERS:
This experiential blog/workshop is based on my new book, "How Many Cookies Will It Take to Make Me Happy?" If you are new to my writing, you might want to read the earlier mini-chapters. They are available on FaceBook, The PublishersMarketPlace & at the following link. Remember to scan down to find the earliest chapters & work your way up. http://beyonddisorderlyeating.blogspot.com/
A bit of background.... we are working with creative Interactive Self-Hypnosis imagery, planting suggestions directly into the creative subconscious mind as you read along. What appears like a story is a series of self-hypnotic sessions, designed to bring about desired lifestyle changes. The inner mind is creative & rather child-like, loving to play with images, especially when they are emotionalized. Just like the saying, "a picture is worth a thousand words", well-planted mind images, can be worth hours of therapy. We can actually change or motivate in 1/200th of a second. So come along & look forward to some lifestyle-changing events.
NEW RITUAL GARDEN
As I mentioned earlier, I found it easier to dispose of my old ritual, except for a few threads. I did this in the "theater of my mind". It was a simple as telling it to go completely. That's what the power of the creative mind is all about. I remember the day I did this. A light came down, leaving the area completely empty & very clean. The first thing I did was to set up my alter of gratitude & forgiveness. In the development of imagery, it's a good idea to make important metaphors very detailed, so I spent quite a bit of time in this area of my mind. It took me awhile to be able to place pictures of those people who I felt had injured me the most, but after awhile, it became easier. In the meanwhile, I placed an object that represented them, instead of the picture. Another area of my garden or ritual was an actual kitchen with very modern appliances. I was no longer afraid of food & wanted it well represented, so my subconscious mind understood what was needed by my body systems. I also took time to think about foods that I liked. It was during that time that I improved my cooking skills, because when I had the most problems with bingeing, my food shopping & prep was dismal. The new ritual garden also included an area for deep relaxation & a leather bound book filled with future images. I'll share those with you in the next blog.
Copyright 2009 Elizabeth Bohorquez, RN, C.Ht
May not be copied or reproduced without permission of the author.
Elizabeth Bohorquez, RN, C.Ht is author of Sugar...the Hidden Eating Disorder & How to Lick It. She is also the writer/producer of over 350 mp3/CD programs in the areas of medicine, health, prevention, addictions, self-development & sports for adults & children.