Saturday, May 19, 2012

Take a deep breath!



WHAT IS YOUR OXYGEN?

Have you taken a plane lately? Flight attendants always tell passengers, “Parents, if you are traveling with your children and the oxygen masks drop, place a mask over yourself first, before attending to your children.”  

If you give your oxygen away, you’re of no use to others (and you are likely to suffocate).  This can be understood as a metaphor about meeting your own needs, versus taking care of others.  

When you are deprived of basic emotional needs, such as love, connection, understanding and comfort, you may turn to food to symbolically meet those needs.  Alternately, you may turn away from food as a way of expressing how deprived you feel.


What is your “oxygen?”



What are you depriving yourself of (but giving away to others)?



What do you need more of in your life?



How do you make yourself available to others?



Do you let others take care of you?  If so, what does that stir up in you?   If not, what stops you?



When you were growing up, what were you taught about self-sacrifice?  (ie, was it noble?)



What is the difference between being selfish and practicing self-care?


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18 comments:

Sandra Thulin said...

I had a martyr mom growing up, and now I'm fighting those same instincts. This was a good post to read. Going to bookmark it so I can reference. Definitely don't want to end up being a bitter old woman.

Alyssa said...

I just need to get away from people who make me feel bad about myself. I've been making new friends and they are much easier for me to be around because they are more encouraging.

Brenda said...

Sometimes people get angry with me when I have to choose myself over them. It's taking me a long time not to feel bad about saying no sometimes. We have to take care of ourselves first or we will be no good for anyone else.

Karen said...

Sometimes I need more downtime than I do take. However, during the moments when I actually remember to "take a deep breath" and try to relax, I love to take a hot bath and burn some incense or scented candles while doing so. As far as other needs, I just have to learn to trust people more and build new relationships.

Julie Anne said...

In relationships I felt like I always had to be the strong one. I felt as though I was supposed to be an indepensible supply of compassion, love, and sex to guys who sometimes seemed to not be able to offer the same in return. I felt like I was giving too much of my time, resources, and energy to get nothing or very little back.

Trevor said...

I know what that's like! You might've also hit it on the head for me just now. I think I use food to replace what I don't get back from people in relationships.

Brad said...

I also am one of those people who feels like the giver and others are the takers. I try to show I care genuinely in relationships if I really like or love someone, but I often would feel like I don't get much positive emotional responses in return. I would make up for it mostly with food, and occasionally alcohol.

Stephanie said...

I sometimes appear too eager to dates and friends. This scares them off leaving me to feel lonely and rejected. I'm getting better at it since I joined my weight loss support group, but this is an issue that still occassionally haunts me.

Rachel said...

I wanna take a stab at answering this question I saw above: "What is the difference between being selfish and practicing self-care?"

Being selfish is never lifting a finger to do anything around the house and/or never giving anyone help when offered. Selfishness is also never picking up the tab even if you do have money while friends are out.

However, self-care is loving yourself and tending to your own needs so that you can be better able to help others in the future.

Sweatpea said...

I am also one of those people who has to say no to people more often. I'm learning in counseling about how important it is to take care of myself.

Theresa said...

I think more rest should help me. I have to learn to go straight to bed instead of thinking I can eat "just a little snack" before bedtime. That relaxation would reduce the stress in my life that results in overeating.

Brenda said...

Taking care of yourself before trying to take care of someone else is as important as is loving yourself first before trying to love someone else.

Susanna said...

Yeah. I notice I'm closer to my ideal weight when I weed out the bullies. LOL

Julie Anne said...

This sounds like a good definition of the difference between being selfish and practicing self-care to me. I'm curious what others think, and if Dr. Nina has any insight for us.

Sarah said...

I understand Theresa's plight. If it really was "just a little snack" that would be one thing. However, sometimes it's better not to start what I can't finish-eating. It's a tough battle most of us have to conquer.

Kerry said...

I know what you mean. Lately I felt like I had nothing left to give, and like I'm running on empty.

Harold said...

It just hit me. Food can be a cover-up. It can help a person avoid what's really going on inside.

Terry said...

I always thought thought that to need people was selfish. I was so used to being along all the time that I didn't realize I needed to socialize as a way to provide myself care.