Beyond Willpower

I’ve recently read an article in the BBC’s Science Focus journal about willpower.

I’m not a scientist which is one of the reasons why I get this journal every month. I find out about all sorts of interesting things that I wouldn’t hear about otherwise, and it’s generally a really good, accessible read (although some bits go way over my head!).

In this article there was reference to willpower in relation to eating disorders and the impact that meditation and other aspects of mindfulness training can have on the power of the human will.

In my early teenage years, I had to use willpower to start to take control of my own life, but eventually had to allow myself to move beyond it and enter that scary place where self-control no longer prevailed.

I still use willpower – to push myself from the point of doing nothing – which I can so easily fall into – to the point of doing something, making a start with decorating my house, for example. But as far as eating is concerned, I seem to have arrived at a much healthier state of mind, where I eat when I’m hungry and recognise the signs when I’m full. I enjoy food – a whole range of different types of food, not just the ‘cottage cheese and crispbread, endless omelettes and no chips diet’ that I lived on for many, many years.

When I concentrated on eating as little as I possibly could everyday, I had little capacity to concentrate on anything else. I’m no longer limiting my life like I limited my food intake although I’m not just eating my way into the oblivion of obesity either.

Ironically, the room that I’ve started working on in the house is the dining room. I’ve found a fabulous wallpaper – ‘Mystical Forest’ – and I’m taking my time, doing a bit at a time, and can gradually feel that sense of transition from having to push myself to do it, to getting drawn in to the process of doing it, and taking pride in the way it looks. I don’t think I will gain any interior design awards, but it is a labour of love, to enhance the lovely home that me and my lovely partner are lucky enough to live in.

Poetry in wallpaper!

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