I had a talk with my life coach, Karlee, and I explained what I was doing.
I told her all the reasons that I was gaining weight. I’m not moving my body as much. At work, I usually get between 5 and 6 miles a day. I’m now getting between 3 and 4 miles a day. We are trying to save PPE, so we aren’t going into the rooms as much now. The cafeteria is bringing up food for us since we can no longer go to the cafeteria. We are getting a lot of food donations from restaurants. There is one charge nurse who makes sure that us vegetarians and vegans have something to eat. She will go as far as writing our names and saving us some food. I felt like since she was taking care and looking out for me then I had to eat the food, even if I had brought my lunch.
My life coach said something so profound and simple, I had wondered why I had not thought of it.
I don’t have to eat the food that is brought just because I want them to know that I appreciate it. I can use my words. I can verbally tell that charge nurse thank you or I could write a note to her. I really do appreciate what she does. I had forgot my lunch one day and she wasn’t there and I only had a salad waiting for me. The salad had some meat in it, so I had to pick out the meat. I can also give the food to someone else. I don’t have to eat it. I was afraid that she would stop looking out for me or that she would be disappointed in me, if I didn’t eat the food.
I will not disappoint myself to avoid disappointing other people.
My life coach also asked me why I was weighing myself. I answered that I wanted to know where my weight was. I equated my weight with how much I was showing myself love and taking care of myself. I have been exercising after work because I know that I’m not getting as many steps as I’m use to at work. I did tell her that I do feel stronger since I started to exercise after work. My intention was good but it wasn’t making me feel any better about myself.
Again she said something so profound and simple.
A scale can only tell you a number. It can’t encompass all that I am. That scale can’t tell you that you have been taking care of yourself mentally or spiritually. The scale can’t tell me that I need to call someone and talk. The scale can’t tell me that I went whale watching. The scale can’t tell me that I have been kind to myself. That scale can’t tell me that I’m a good nurse.
My body is stressed like it has never been stressed before. I have never dealt with the corona virus before. I go to work and I’m stressed because I don’t know if we will have enough PPE for the day. I worry about getting exposed. She said that when you body is stressed, it craves food that you wouldn’t normally crave. When my body is stressed, I crave cake more. I have been fighting it and then when I do indulge, I over do it because I have been fighting the craving for so long.
That was the reason that I had been stepping on the scale more than usual. I know that I had gained weight. I was mentally beating myself up for not being strong like I usually am. Usually I can say no to the sweets that are brought in to work. Lately I haven’t been.
We came up with another idea. The Self Sourced Scale. The Self Source Scale is a series of questions that will help me to know if I’m taking care of myself.
Here is the Self Source Scale:
- Do I feel physically strong?
- Do I have enough energy to do the things that I want to do?
- Am I getting enough sleep and am I sleeping well?
- Have I meditated today?
- Am I doing something that feels good today? (Like listening to music)
- Am I calm and peaceful?
- Am I giving myself grace?
With these questions, I can tell if I’m taking care of myself and not beat myself up mentally.
A scale can only tell me a number, it can’t tell me everything about myself. As a woman, I think that we equate our weight with our happiness and self worth. I know I did that when I was battling my eating disorder. The number on the scale would tell me if I was going to have a good or a bad day. If the number was where I wanted it to be, I was going to have a good day. If the number wasn’t where I wanted it to be, then I was going to have a bad day and I was not going to eat a lot that day.
A number on a scale, can’t tell the whole picture of a person.
Now I can stop beating myself up and have compassion with myself. I have to find a new normal because I’m not in a normal situation with this virus. What worked for me before this virus, may not work for me right now. I have to find new ways to take care of myself. I usually go whale watching at least once a week. I realized that being around water helps to calm me. I haven’t been around the ocean in about 2 months. I have to find other ways to take care of myself. Maybe I can listen to the sound of the ocean on video or watch old whale watching videos.
I encourage every one to use the Self Source Scale. I know I will be using it. Let me know if it helps you.