Healthy Mind Healthy Body (continued).
I am in the final two weeks of my graduate diploma and whilst sitting in lectures today I had another aha moment. As I am learning to do I quickly sent myself a text so that I would not forget. It was a simple, one word representation that I want to expand on for this post. I wrote Maslow. There may be some who recognise the name instantly but for the others I will give a potted history of the subject with some links for you to follow. Maslow devised a table of needs which essentially lists the things that we need in our life to reach the ultimate state of self actualisation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow’s_hierarchy_of_needs. Self actualisation is a desire to reach the state where you can achieve all that you are capable of. It is a model that is based on looking at your absolute potential, it is not a deficit model. It is a strength based model. So you are probably wondering what the link is between Maslow, self actualisation, healthy mind healthy body and Million for a Million http://www.millionforamillion.co.nz/.
On a personal level it has been a tough three months and I have been struggling to keep my eating under control. I was thinking about my motivation and realised that it was at different levels on the hierarchy of needs.
My physiological needs, food, shelter, clothing etc are well looked after. My safety needs are taken care of so it is the next levels that I need to look at. As you can see by the image the next level is at the love and belonging level. I am blessed to have an awesome family. Fantastic children, grandchildren, siblings and a Dad whom I love and would gladly give my life for. Yet there is a gap in my life. I have a couple of close friends but the lack of that one person in my life for that day to day intimacy that I seek is a significant hole in my basket of needs that I seek to fulfil. I realise that eating is a surrogate replacement for that hole. Knowing why you eat is half the battle. dealing with it is another issue.
Now eating is a harsh mistress, if you are in a relationship with food you can be sure that it is going to leave you unfulfilled, unhealthy, sad and just as dependent as if you are in an unhealthy relationship. My personal problem is I am impatient and having had a real unhealthy marriage for so long that I feel like I am wanting to replace that with something great as quickly as I can. I have set ideas about how that may llok but these are being challenged and in a good way.
As I re-evaluate how that may look in my world there has to be a degree of acceptance and coming to terms with my position as a single parent with two teenagers. I could enter into a live in relationship but unless it meets all of my needs then I may recreate that which I had before and the honest answer is that will leave me in such a state that I will end up just as dead as I was when I was 139 kgs. Maslows model talks of sexual intimacy, I however see intimacy at a much bigger and more complex level. True intimacy is a meeting of heart, mind and body. Take any one of those things out of the equation and then in my opinion you do not have intimacy. I often wonder when we here about increasing rates of obesity, depression and many other negative social indicators about the links between these and our throwaway society with temporary relationships that have little real commitment. I am not talking about marriage per se as a piece of paper is no guarantee of commitment at any time but something a lot deeper than that.
Anyway back to the eating, night time is a danger time for me. Sleep and I are not good friends, an ongoing result of the trauma that I was exposed to in my former work as a child protection social worker, so when I awake I have found myself heading to the fridge for a glass of low fat milk and some cookies. Now today I just signed up for this nifty new app on facebook called habit exchange, http://apps.facebook.com/habitexchange/ . No more cookies with milk and I will exchange that milk for water as well. No exchange for the cookies. I do not need to eat at night end of story but a drink is essential for me, and I like it cold. It highlights my ongoing need to reflect and establish some further learning around relationships, what I need, what I want, what is possible and then seeing if that can fit into my world. If I don’t then I risk fulfilling my nightmare of living a mediocre life and making the same mistakes again. In the words of James Blunt, I need reason to prevail and not choice.
Well for now that is enough, an assignment is calling me and I have got enough down on this blog to clear my head for right now. I will address the other two levels of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in my next posts.. Take care and remember that a healthy mind is the place to start when you are looking for a healthy body. Oh and by the way just to dispel any thoughts that I may be turning into a blimp again my latest Jeans are a fantastic pair of classic Levi 511 skinnys in a 36. Not too bad when I was in a 53. Just have to remember the successes!