Do Your Treats Bite You Back?

Yes you read the title right, do your treats bite you back?

You know, you are happy, sad, depressed, deserving…whatever the emotion, it tells you that you deserve a treat.  And perhaps that is true.

The next question, what kind of treat do you deserve?

And if you are deserving, does your treat have teeth that will bite you back later?

And perhaps that is true.

But what is a treat really? Your Dictionary provides this definition of a treat:

…something pleasant that is unexpected or that is offered as a surprise or a reward. (noun)

Eg: a treat is going out for ice cream.

As I sit here, I find myself thinking about treats that bite back. It is a regular theme that comes by every now and then and asks the question of me, “Do your treats still have teeth or have you learned by now what a treat really is?”

Let me take you back to the first time I consciously realized that my treats did in fact have teeth that not only bite back, but continue to do so with a bigger and bigger bite each time.

In fact one can get so accustomed to said teeth that a tolerance is built up around them. This is dangerous ground. It is the very hand that treats you which bites you back.

I remember telling my secretary (back when I was a corporate lawyer with my own secretary) that I had eaten McDonalds to treat myself.

I explained that I knew I would then take the same meal I had used as a treat earlier in the day only to beat myself up with it later. You know when the lights were low and I was all alone reflecting on my deeds,  hating my body, loathing my very soul for eating what was earlier, a treat.

To say she looked quizzically at me is an understatement. She later asked what I had meant by that statement.

Thinking about it, prior to her question, I had become aware of this on a sub-conscious level yet it had not entered into my conscious state of being. I knew this because I was still and sometimes continue, to do it.

A treat that bites back is one that the gateway gremlin inside of you screams out “Have it, you deserve it. You’ve been through a lot/are going to go through a lot/triumphed over a challenge” yadda yadda! The list goes on.

One thing the treat gremlin is not short of is ways to persuade why you should do the very thing your inner knowing knows you should not.

The problem is, or so I have found, that the voice of the gateway gremlin is so much louder in some of us than the voice of our inner knowing. Only in the dark hours, in the solitude of night did my own inner knowing find a voice to express itself.

Self loathing and hatred would then be the tape that ran until I fell asleep.  And guess what, I would wake up to it as well!

Imagine falling asleep every night with the thoughts of how much I hated myself for what I put into my body earlier!

As I mentioned, at the time my treat that bit me back was a McDonalds-quarter pound cheeseburger, large fries and chocolate milkshake.

I would scuttle, yes literally, out of my office, already feeling a tinge of guilt (here is the first sign that all was not in alignment), around the corner to McDonalds. Grabbing my order I would return to eat it in my office. Of course then my office smelled like McDonalds for the afternoon, letting everyone else know what I had done.

Today I do not eat McDonalds, I do not eat any animal products. Yet if I am not careful those gateway gremlins can still convince me that I deserve a treat.

Now several years later I am more adept at recognizing the false lull of that voice and my inner knowing is a little louder than it was back then. But I still have to be aware, especially when busy, tired or stressed.

I now remind myself what is important to me, namely to live a healthy and vibrant life. The gateway gremlins still knock at my door. They know my weaknesses and play to them. But it takes two to play and I have to politely decline engaging them. It is a constant battle, but now it is one that I am not willing to lose for I have too much to gain.

Now my treat is saying yes to my health, yes to the possibility that it doesn’t have to be the way it has always been. I know I can create a new moment every moment and not be tied up in my past.

Sometimes they get the better of me (life is a journey after all) but that happens less and less as I become more aware of the patterns.

And I know that it is was not, and is not, one stray treat that kept me in bondage in my body.  Food itself (so long as it is “real” food) is not inherrently good or bad, but the choices we make with regard to them are the danger zone)

How about you? Do you have treats with teeth? Does you inner child or whatever you call it, scream at the top of it’s lungs “deprivation” when you go past treats or thing of them.

What do your gremlin gatekeepers tell you? How do you deal them? Are you still grappling with them or do you have a strategy that is working for you? I would love to hear from you.

May all your treats be ones that take you further on your path to health and vibrancy and may you keep your gateway gremlins in their place.  And when they lead you astray, thank them and know that the pounds you carry are not because of one stray treat.

What are your thoughts, am I alone in this or do you “get me?”

Live. Love. Be Loved.

Your ExtraOrdinary Self Care Angel