Am I complying?

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    • #12187

      Hi! As I’ve mentioned before in this forum, I’ve been working with addictive desire using the technique and Gillian’s audio, and it is going well so far! In fact, it is going so well that I’m having trouble finding moments to practice. It’s like now I’m not experiencing addictive desire at all, or when I do, the sensation is very fleeting. I even tried to provoke it, smelling a chocolate bar after dinner, for example (which is usually my weakness) and felt no desire at all. I would be over the moon if it weren’t because I’ve been here before. I remember experiencing the same after reading Ditching Diets, and after a while, I was overeating again (although I must say not nearly as much as before! That’s why I’m here, I know Gillian’s method is the way to go). Also, as I’ve mentioned before, I have a history of being compliant, and I also tend to be blinded by the bright side of things.

      I’m trying to remind myself of my free choice frequently. Also, I think I’m not as rigid or perfectionist as in the past. I try to be aware of thoughts/feelings of deprivation (I’m not having much of those either), but I’m still afraid I might be complying? I have an uneasy feeling like this won’t last, but I can’t quite point my finger on what it is exactly. Is there anything else I can do? Any other signs I should be aware of?

      I’ve hesitated to write this on the forum because I thought that other people might feel discouraged if they think my “progress” is too fast and theirs is not… But I’m not even sure this is progress at all!

      • This topic was modified 7 months ago by Marta.
    • #12190


      No need to be afraid! It’s very possible there’s some compliance going on for you, and when things become a bit more difficult you can return to this site and get involved in the materials in a deeper way.

      It could be that you’ve not yet encountered particular circumstances where your addictive desire will be stronger – maybe difficult emotions, social events, travel.

      The most important thing is you see that this is most likely what’s going on. So when it gets more difficult, you don’t give up entirely and think this is one more thing that didn’t work for you. What you do is return to “Working Through” desire and understand that you had a bit of a free ride for a while.

      I doubt very much that moving out of compliance will be as dreadful as you fear. Remember you can post something about what’s happening here on the forum, and I’ll respond.

    • #12191

      I’ll be interested to hear what others think Marta, but my own experience is that I went through a similar phase after about 5 months on the programme. I remember asking here on the forum about it.

      On reflection and in the light of the comments of my fellow ELOers, I realised that this was just the technique working. I examined my mood for signs of compliance: those feelings described in week 2 of ‘being good’. Was I eating ‘perfectly’ and never making a mistake? No! Was I feeling sad or deprived? No. Did I still experience addictive desire – for sure! And most times worked through it.

      Ultimately, over time, I learned to trust myself, to trust that I wasn’t in compliance. As time went on, and the expected rebellion didn’t emerge, I grew more and more confident that the changes I had made were lasting ones – just the way I eat now.

      I’d also say that the changes themselves are not ‘all or nothing’. I believe that unlike short-lived diets, there is no ‘end state’, but an ongoing journey of improvement and better health. You say that some of the changes you made after reading Ditching Diets have stayed with you, and that you are not as perfectionist as you used to be. That in itself is a result, and it’s entirely possible that this latest feeling of unease is just your next step towards self-belief. 🙂

    • #12196
      Renée L

      Wow. What a great thread! Thanks everyone for sharing your insights.

    • #12203

      Thank you for your answer, Gillian. I feel very relieved. I feared that none of my progress would be “valid” if I was being compliant. Now I see it more like a stage of the process; no big deal, just good to be aware of it. I’ll try to remember the “free ride” analogy so that I don’t give up if things get tough!

      Thanks also for your experience, Louis. I love your reflection on this being an ongoing journey. I’ve just realized I still have that idea of ​​an ideal “end state”, and I see why that’s probably not a helpful mindset.

      Also Thank you Renée for your comment! 🙂

      I’m so happy I joined this course.

    • #12322
      Sheelagh M

      Thanks all this thread has been very helpful

    • #12331
      Judith K

      Really helpful thread. I also want to make sure I’m not just complying and on that initial high. Thanks everyone for sharing these thoughts.

    • #12646

      I think I’m finally stepping out of compliance. This past week has been tougher in terms of experiencing addictive desire more often, but also incredibly rewarding as I was able to work through it with fairly good results (and also a few mistakes). I finally feel I’m making solid progress. Week 4 webinar was very enlightening and made me realize some mistakes I still made in asserting my freedom of choice. Also, the material from week 5 has been very helpful.

      I think that being aware of this state of “compliance” has made all the difference. Hadn’t I been aware of this, when things got serious after a couple of weeks of “free ride”, I would have thought that this just “doesn’t work” for me. That the effect just doesn’t last. I think that’s what happened when I read “Ditching Diets”. I’m happy I gave it another try!

    • #12655

      Great to see you’re aware of all of this, Marta.

      I do suspect that this temporary state of compliance is more common than people realise, especially with those who have done a lot of dieting and are quite good at it. After all, yo-yo dieters do lose weight at first!

      It’s a matter of understanding that addictive desire is your expectation of overeating. If you expect to do well on your new diet (or Eating Less course) it’s likely you won’t expect to overeat, at least to some extent and at least for a while.

    • #12656
      Sophia G.

      Oh I do hope I’m not just complying. I thought I was doing pretty well and, like you, Marta, I’ve been getting relatively easy addictive desire. I am not good at dieting, and succeeded on 3 diets for a while, which is not a lot, so I thought I was a bit safe from being compliant. But because I did succeed at dieting sometimes, it shows I can sometimes comply. It’s extremely useful to be aware of the real possibility, so thanks for posting. I will have to remember, if I slip a lot, that it may well be a factor.
      PS I’m definitely not a perfectionist. (Tho that wouldn’t be a bad thing, in other areas of my life..)

      • This reply was modified 6 months, 2 weeks ago by Sophia G..
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