More threads by Lana


I thought I’d write the following not so much for others, but for me. At times it is difficult to admit faults, or to see progress. This is my first step out into a “public view”.

I am one of those persons that find food to be of comfort. When I feel sad, depressed, tired, or even angry, food gives me comfort, especially sweets. The consumption of bad foods is really a binge, and yes, it is hidden. But it gets hard to hide the pounds that appear. Looking back, there are many “reasons” why I do that and to describe them, would be to write a book.

I have tried different things to loose the weight and have accomplished that, in a healthy fit way. However, whenever disaster struck, I turned to one “friend” that never betrayed; food, mainly sugar and carbs for that “fix”. Less then two years ago I was within 20 (or less) lbs of my ideal weight by any standard. I used NLP and focused on changing bad habits, aiming for excellence, and setting my mind to a goal. I reached that goal (almost!) but, disaster struck, and I reverted back. I have been trying to get back but to no avail. I become depressed and binge and almost immediately feel guilt, shame, and anger for being weak (and of course, this calls for a "fix"). I haven’t stopped trying, but at some point, when old methods no longer work, it’s time to open up to new ones.

I remember one lesson in NLP that at the time seemed odd. The instructor said, “think of a habit you wish to break, something that you wish you didn’t do. When you find that something, think of a positive intention behind that habit.” *blink blink* Umm…positive intention behind a bad habit? You have got to be kidding me! “No,” he said, “behind every action, there is a positive intention, otherwise you wouldn’t do it” Right.

Well, a year later, I find myself recalling that lesson and decided to give it a try. What is the positive intention behind my unhealthy consumption of bad foods? The answer surprised me. It wasn’t comfort per se, as I thought. It wasn’t depression. It wasn’t some deep dark secret either. Sitting at work, nodding off, sleepy, my mind comes to a brilliant conclusion that I need to inhale some cookies and viola! Energy! (Yes, that logic is severely flawed) I’m upset with someone, having no family at all, I’m feeling uncovered, vulnerable and to soothe that, I binge on sweets.

Those are my positive intentions, to get energy, or to calm my mind and dull the ache. NLP teaches that to combat such habits, I must find another way to achieve those positive intentions. I need energy when I didn’t get enough sleep. That one is easy; get some sleep! The upset, depressed (usually if associated with some loss) part was tricky. But while replaying the event in my mind, I notice my own physiology, I'm alone, I smile, I get comfortable, I relax, and I let go. Whoa! There is that positive intention. And all I have to do is change the physical state and the rest will follow. I make time for me, I smile, release my tense shoulders and close my eyes calming my reckless mind. THIS is the treat I’m after and used food as a conduit.

Moral of this babbling (wrote a book after all...LOL), when food is an issue, consider the positive intention behind it, and then, find a way to achieve that state, without food. It takes practice, it’s awkward, and it’s uncomfortable for a while, but it works, and in no time, it becomes easy and automatic.


Wow. I had never heard about positive intentions before. I always assumed that my bad habits were bad habits. Thank you for giving me a new way to look at things!
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