Letting Go of the Habits and the Forces Driving Our Unhealthy Habits


Manage episode 238392413 series 1141871
By Betsy Thurston MPH RD, Integrative Health Coach, and Registered Dietitian. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Do you remember how heavy it was to carry your backpack to school? In the same way, your mind has an unseen bag, holding the feelings and weighted expectations you put on your shoulders every day. These emotions and thoughts add enormous weight to our “backpack” that can have real, material consequences in our life.

In this episode, I teach you an exercise where we look inside our mental and emotional backpacks and notice which heavy rocks you might have that represent your emotional weight. I go over the most common “rocks” in the way of happiness among the clients that I typically work with. Once we recognize them, we can start letting them go — one rock at a time.

Before I recap the show notes I want to alert listeners that I have a class starting March 9, 2021 and that you can sign up now to begin receiving class materials and get a head start.

Yes, my 10-week CLASS starts March 9!

This transformative class will include a lot of weekly content, as well as 5 Zoom sessions from 7:30 to 9 pm Eastern time. The content includes pre-recorded videos, audio recordings, handouts, and membership in a Facebook community. It is packed with content and comes with a money-back guarantee! You can't take this class and not begin to understand the roots of your eating habits that you might be frustrated with. From this understanding will come change.

To sign up for the class or to get private help, visit my website. You can also send me an email at betsy@betsythurstonrd.com.

Back to the Podcast! Here are three reasons why you should listen to the full episode:
  1. Unpack the rocks in your own backpack.
  2. Learn to thank these rocks as part of your journey as you let them go.
  3. Develop an intention and willingness to put these rocks to rest.
Episode Highlights The Weight on Your Shoulders

Bearing a heavy backpack day in and day out can drain your energy. You might feel guilty for not getting anything done. You might retreat and isolate yourself. Some might feel angry over the injustice of it all and lash out against others.

When you peek inside this mental backpack, you'll discover "rocks" weighing you down. The rocks in your backpack represent an unhealthy belief or attachment to an idea. The first rock contains the word "thin." The problem might lie not in valuing it but in overvaluing it. If you can slowly learn to let go of the intensity of the value to be thin then you will be able to become a more intuitive eater.

Unmasking Secrets and Confusion

The second rock is "secrets." Whether it's a secret binge eating habit or endlessly worrying about your weight, keeping secrets builds tension that can be a problem. Before coming out with the truth, thank your secrets. We need to be grateful for the obstacles that come our way for the lessons they leave us.

The third rock is "confusion." There are countless diets, workouts, and information around us that it's easy to become overwhelmed. But if we learn to stay still, the answer will present itself. When we let go of the need to know, we can tap into the right way to eat.

The Rocks in Your Backpack

Your backpack is filled with many rocks, and some of the ones mentioned include:

  • shame
  • control
  • fear of hunger and fullness
  • loneliness

These rocks change the way we see ourselves. Shame builds up and can be hard to let go of — it can take a lot of therapy and research into the roots of the shame, yet practicing a willingness to put the shame aside from time to time can change the course of your entire day.

The need for control is another common rock that can take complete hold of us. Fear of hunger and fear of fullness also can create beliefs that aren’t accurate for us, such as the belief that we can’t handle a small amount of hunger, or that if we’re full it means we’re going to get fatter.

Loneliness shackles us to reliance on food or other sources of happiness when people aren’t around. The journey of healing might involve letting go of the rock of believing that you can’t be with loneliness. Letting go of these rocks one by one frees you and opens your life to more possibilities.

Bearing the Burden

The burden of our rocks limits us and makes us feel insecure, regretful and guilty. Often, we repress our fears which leads to eating. For others, these rocks can strengthen a victim stance, fueling learned helplessness and more fear. Accepting that these rocks exist and weigh us down is the first step.

Learning to Let Go

It's not a simple task to take these rocks out of our mental backpacks. Unlike physical objects, these rocks exist in our minds and cannot be thrown away that easily.

It helps to start with the idea that carrying these rocks for more than what is necessary can get in the way of your happiness. Identify the rocks in your mind and how they may be weighing you down. From then, you can form an intention to thank these rocks for their lessons and finally put them to rest.

5 Powerful Quotes

"We naturally compare ourselves to other people. It's a survival thing. So it's not really valuing the attractive, thin body, it's overvaluing it."

"Thank you for the opportunity to know that I don't have all the answers. And I'm going to surrender because I can't manage this anymore."

"Even our shame is to be thanked. Because it is from our shame that we open up that we change that we are broken apart. So we can realize that we have to love ourselves, or we will not have any chance of having a peaceful life. "

"There's no advantage, there's no benefit – nothing to holding on to this rock. It will not make you not make a mistake in the future. It will not do that at all. It will make you feel miserable and sad and overwhelmed, and it will make you eat. It will make you have sadness. Quick, get that rock out of the bag. And let's move on.

"As we put the rock of denial into the circle, and we accept, all right, yes, I do have some issues that need to be looked at. In fact, it becomes a little lighter and a little easier."

If you listened to the podcast and enjoyed it, please share and post a review!

Do you want to enroll in my class, or have any questions or want to schedule an appointment? You can email me at betsy@betsythurstonrd.com or visit my website.

To making peace with eating,


123 episodes