Transcript

August 12, 2020

Dr. Nina:
Hey there, welcome to the Dr. Nina Show here on LA Talk Radio. I am your host, Dr. Nina Savelle-Rocklin, and I am here to help you stop counting calories, carbs, and fat grams so you can easily get to a healthy weight and get on with your life. That is what it’s all about. I want you to wake up and think about your day, not your diet. If you want to call in and talk with me today, the new number here is 323-203-0815. That is 323-203-0815. Please call, let me know what is weighing on you, what is going on with you, what is eating at you, because the real problem with any kind of food, weight, body image, any of those problems, the real problem is not food. The problem is what is weighing on you, what is eating at you. I am here to help you resolve that so you can deal with it and cope directly instead of using food for comfort or distraction or anything else. Oh, I already have a caller. Hello, caller.

Karlygash:
Good morning, Dr. Nina. How are you?

Dr. Nina:
I am well, thank you. What’s going on?

Karlygash:
Thank you. So I’m calling to… I don’t know, randomly. A lot is going on actually, right? Who am I lying to? I have a lot, a lot of things going on and one of them is my mother. Like the worst. The favorite subject. So I was talking to her yesterday, and she had this issue when she was lying to me all the time since I was born, even when I was a kid. Honestly that was the hardest part for me to take and swallow and I’m still trying to process … I’m not trying. I’m still processing. Although I’m 35, I’m processing it. I know I need to walk away from her. That’s her life. This is how she behaves. But it’s hard on me. When I tell her not to do certain things which affect our family, she still does it. She covers for her siblings.

In the Asian culture where I’m from, this sibling issue is so weak. There is a dis-balance of how you should build your family like that, if family should be centered around you, your partner, and your kids. So, it’s a more like siblings come first.

Dr. Nina:
Okay. So let me just go back to what you originally said which is the issue with your mother. And by the way, the oldest psychoanalytic joke in the world is if it’s not one thing, it’s your mother. Of course, it’s also your father, your grandfather, your aunts or uncles, or anyone who hurts you. But it is very common for people to have mom stuff going on. With that said, it’s what’s going on for you individually that matters. One thing you said that really stuck out to me is that you said you know you should walk away, but you can’t. I don’t know what you mean by walk away. What do you mean by that?

Karlygash:
I mean walk away in my own head. Like to bring it to my consciousness and awareness that she’s going to do what she’s been doing her whole life because I’m still in this pattern where, “Oh if I educate her more. Oh, if I get her better healthcare. Oh, if I do this, this, this. Then she will understand that she’s not making the right choices and those choices are harmful for her own health and life. And those things are really harmful for her.

Dr. Nina:
Trapped. It’s a trap. It’s a trap.

Karlygash:
… and at the same time I cannot give up on her.

Dr. Nina:
I know.

Karlygash:
She’s a person with special needs.

Dr. Nina:
But-

Karlygash:
If I give up on her, that’s it. She’s done.

Dr. Nina:
Okay. But we’re not talking-

Karlygash:
She’ll be done.

Dr. Nina:
Karlygash, we’re not talking about giving up on her. First of all, you are in the when/then trap. “If I do this, then I will get the mother that’s waiting for me. If I just…” It’s like she has this warehouse full of goodness. If you can just come up with the right knock, the right combination, the right password, she’s going to open the door and then she’s going to be the mother you always wanted her to be. It is very painful to give up on that wish and that hope that the mother you have is somehow can be a different kind of mother. There is no warehouse full of good mothering. There is no other mother. This is who she is, so that is one thing I want to say. The other is this idea of giving up on her. You can still set limits and come to terms with who she is without giving up on her.

But I just want to say actually a third thing, which is that she may, whether consciously or unconsciously, she may be staying stuck in wherever she is because look at what it gets her. She has a daughter who is trying to get her to change, who is trying to help her, who is invested in her. Sometimes people don’t want to change because that means whatever benefit they’re getting from their circumstances, as negative as they may be, outweighs anything else. So staying in the position of being-

Staying in a position of being incapable and not knowing and just generally not getting it together ensures your engagement with her. And that’s-

Karlygash:
You’re absolutely right. That’s what’s happening. I was almost just thinking, “Oh my God, the whole America is going to hear it. I’m so embarrassed,” but I’m going to say it because sharing kills the shame. Especially if so many people who are listening to you. So honestly when I was born in my family, as a kid, I had awareness when I was a one year old. I remember myself. I remember myself at a very young age. I was born. I looked around. I didn’t like the family I was born in. Right away, when I was a kid. I couldn’t accept them. I could figure out that hey, this family is not effective. I couldn’t think like that, but I had this feeling like it’s not the right place for me. So I looked around, I didn’t like it, and my whole life, I was trying to get myself out of it with a healthy side to it. Like what are the healthy people live and do their stuff?

Karlygash:
So it took me my whole life to get the family out of my head. Still doing it. Still working hard. Maybe she feels that. All of them feel that, including my mother and her siblings because many of them have [inaudible 00:08:11] going on, addictions. You know the stuff. Not educated and stuff. I wouldn’t say that they don’t have resources. They do have. But I don’t know like that.

Dr. Nina:
So-

Karlygash:
I guess honestly, I just want to say it’s about shame. I guess I was the one who got the good genes. I guess my biology managed to get the good genes and then I just maybe work hard to get those things going. Not saying that I don’t have my struggles. I do. But I guess, “But you [inaudible 00:08:47] me, babe.” I said, “Whatever,” I used it and-

Dr. Nina:
And she did not.

Karlygash:
… maybe they…

Dr. Nina:
And she did not.

Karlygash:
She did to some point. She did to some point. It’s a combination of things. She did to some point. But when you’re alone and you-

Dr. Nina:
She doesn’t have your resilience. She doesn’t have your resilience. And I-

Karlygash:
Well, she has some sort of resilience, but not maybe-

Dr. Nina:
But Karly-

Karlygash:
… maybe it pushes you to a better result.

Dr. Nina:
Let’s stay with you and not her. Coming to terms with the fact that whatever, through whatever her genetics, whatever her resourcefulness, whatever her capabilities are, they are limited. Recognizing the limitations and realizing this … I know, it’s so hard. It’s so hard.

But it’s toxic hope. Toxic to you. If you don’t give up, and that doesn’t mean give up on a relationship with her, that means give up the idea that she can change. So that you stop yearning and thinking if only this, if only I just say this, if only I educate her this way, if only … If then, when then. Which only hurts you. So coming to terms with this is who she is, and finding a new way to be with who she is, the limitations that she has, and appreciating the qualities that she does have that you appreciate. Then you can be more at peace.

Karlygash:
So I still … I already told her I will never give up on you. I will take care of you as much as I can but don’t expect any emotional connection from me. We’re not there. Like we’re biological mother and daughter but we never had like real Mommy and daughter relationship. We never had that bond. I was brought up by other people and then when I was 13, I left her. I couldn’t live with her. Like for my sanity and health.

Dr. Nina:
And not giving up on her does not mean helping her so actively. It means saying, you have a choice between this thing and this thing and I trust your capacity to make the right choice. Not hey mom, here’s why you should make the right choice.

Karlygash:
Thank you. I need that. Thank you.

Dr. Nina:
You’ve got to treat her like a little kid. With little kids …

Karlygash:
Yeah.

Dr. Nina:
You don’t control them. Controlling them will never get you what you want. You say, here are your choices, you could have this or you could have this. It’s your choice. And it’s your consequences.

Karlygash:
Oh my God. Thank you. Oh my god. I’m doing the same with the kids I’m working with. You know, I’m making like more independent. You know, if you want to help a person, a Chinese proverb, don’t give them a fish every day …

Dr. Nina:
Teach them-

Karlygash:
Teach them how to fish so they can fish themselves. And feed themselves. But when it comes to my mom I guess everything is so messy that I don’t see this clear message and clear working things. Thank you so much. You helped me a lot. I’ll do this from now, I’ll say, hey here’s the choices. Here’s what’s going to happen, you choose and I trust your ability to make the choice. Even if you don’t make the right choice along the way, you’ll learn from it.

Dr. Nina:
That sounds great.

Karlygash:
And honestly that can work for me as well, because honestly it’s very hard for me. I am 35, I push myself to the age but I can not take it anymore. I am just ruining my own health.

Dr. Nina:
Toxic hope only poisons you. It only poisons you. Take care of yourself, give up that hope. And [crosstalk 00:12:48] you have to stay with who she is and find a way to deal with her, make her accountable because believe me, she’s getting something from it. Help rejecting people. People are help rejecting … and let’s just say I might have a mother in law who kind of is like this way. She can ask you … I can talk to her for four hours or I used to, talk to her for hours and try to get her to understand that this is this, and this, and then she’ll say yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I’ve got to do that. And then she’ll say something like, I went to the hairdresser and he said to do this so I’m doing that. They don’t actually want help.

Karlygash:
Oh that’s my mom. Oh that’s my mom.

Dr. Nina:
They want to reject the help so that you keep trying to get them to change. You’ve got to give that up. That’s toxic hope.

Karlygash:
Because they’re scared if we-

Dr. Nina:
Who cares? It doesn’t matter.

Karlygash:
That we’re going to leave them? Are they scared … ?

Dr. Nina:
That’s their way of getting engagement. That is [crosstalk 00:13:50]-

Karlygash:
Oh. Oh my God. Don’t they … Oh my God. I was born to this world, I came to America honestly thinking that these people have … But it’s just that in the whole world people have been the same thing everywhere. You know, like they can be 50 years old but they can just have not very well developed thinking patterns or something. Oh my God. I wish all of us had this … I don’t know, [monacures 00:14:14] where you can see and you know when you’re down. And you don’t waste your whole life on … Oh my God. I’m figuring that out.

Dr. Nina:
And you can find new ways of engaging with her that aren’t at your own expense. And of course, then when you feel so frustrated and hope is yearning, yearning is hunger, there is the connection to food some times. So think about what we talked about. Give yourself permission to relate to her in a different way. And take care of yourself. All of this care that you’re giving to her, give it to yourself. Give it to yourself.

Karlygash:
I’m working on that.

Dr. Nina:
You’re doing a great job.

Karlygash:
I’m working on that.

Dr. Nina:
You’re doing a great job. Call me and let me know how it goes.

Karlygash:
Dr. Nina, what would I do without you? You’re such a pro. Honestly, you’re such a pshycoanalytical. Oh my God. You are like … I don’t know. Yoda. I don’t know. Dumbledore? What do you call them? You know, they like top, top guys who come and like teach you and like they know what’s going to happen to you. You’re like one of them but you’re very beautiful. Not like them.

Dr. Nina:
Honored I am. There’s my Yoda impression. I won’t embarrass myself any further. But thank you. That really is very sweet and that means so much.

Karlygash:
Thank you so so much. Oh my God. The world is so lucky to have you. Thank you so much. Show your cards, straight to the point. Solutions, working solutions. That all we need to hear [inaudible 00:15:49] right now, honestly. I’m forever grateful.

Dr. Nina:
Thank you Karlygash. Let me know how it goes. And you’ve got this. You can do this.

Karlygash:
I will. Thank you so much. Thank you. Have a great day.

Dr. Nina:
You’re welcome. You too. Bye bye.

Karlygash:
Thank you. Thank you. Bye bye.

Dr. Nina:
Okay. So last week … Oh Karlygash. She’s so sweet. So last week I started talking about Talia and then I didn’t get very far. So I wanted to talk about Talia situation. About minimizing. And this is something that is going on a lot in our world today. Which is why I think it would be helpful to talk about.

Dr. Nina:
Basically, Talia got accepted to a medical school, a prestigious medical school in her area. And she was really hoping that her parents would be so proud of her. And her father said, well too bad you get into Yale. And this was crushing to Talia. And she said, “Nothing I do will ever be good enough. I will never be enough. I’ll never be enough.” And then she was sobbing and she got herself together and she took a deep breath and she put the tissue to her eyes. And she said, “I don’t know what I’m complaining about. It’s not as if something really terrible happened to me. I didn’t get raped, I didn’t get attacked. I don’t have cancer. In the grand scheme of things”, she said, “many people have it much worse. So this is not the worst thing that could happen.”

Now on the one hand, that is true. But on the other hand, that response to her pain is not helpful. She was minimizing her upset feelings as a way of denying how devastated she was by her father’s response. And usually she binged until she was in physical pain as a way of distracting herself from those emotional wounds. And also expressing her emotional pain by creating physical pain. If you tell yourself it’s not that bad, or it could be worse, then you are dismissing your feelings. And remember there are two types of traumatic wounds, metaphorically. There’s the one giant stab wound with a butcher knife that just Boom stabs you through the heart and causes all kinds of terrible, awful mess and pain. Or there are the thousand small cuts. And often we think we only have a right to be traumatized or really upset if it’s the stab wound to the heart with a giant knife. But the reality is a thousand small cuts also hurt and do as much damage, over time, as one big event.

This is what I see a lot, people are talking about a lot during these times of COVID. They will complain about being stuck inside or various things and how being quarantined or semi quarantined affects them. And then they’ll say, but you know what, at least I have a job. Or at least I have a house. Or it could be worse, I could be on the streets. True, it could always be worse. And it could always be worse. We could always be comparing ourself to someone who has it worse. But all that does is make us feel bad about our circumstances. And our circumstances matter. Our circumstances matter to us. If something is bothering you, it matters. If something is weighing on you, eating at you, it matters. If you’re upset by something, it matters. And what you need to do is attend to that.

In the book, and I’ve shared this on previous shows, I talk about my friend who’s parents very wealthy parents, live in a beautiful house in Hidden Hills, down the street from J Lo. And they had a house fire right around the time of the tsunami in Japan. And people would tell them, at least you have a house. At least you have the funds to rebuild. It could’ve been so much worse. You could have no house. People in Japan have no house, they lost their lives, they lost everything. Almost like these people should say, wow how lucky I am that I had a house fire.

Reality is, yes they had the means to rebuild. Yes, it was a beautiful house. And yes, it was very painful to lose photos and priceless mementos. It’s still a ginormous hassle to have to rebuild. That matters. If you’re going through something, just because someone else has it worse, that doesn’t take away your right to have pain. Your right to have fear or to feel bad about your circumstances. And that is especially true right now, during COVID during when a lot of us are trying to be so grateful for what we do have. So grateful that we’re not sick. So grateful that we don’t know more people who have died or don’t know any people who have died from COVID.

I am not among the lucky few who can say that. But I’m glad more people haven’t passed away, that I know. It’s devastating that 165,000 people are dead. But just because you’re healthy doesn’t mean you can’t have fears, anxieties, anger or any of it. So give yourself the right to feel what you feel because after all the only way out is through. The only way to get rid of these feelings is to actually feel them.

And Josh is on Instagram and he’s saying we need to see if we’re holding on to anger. And holding onto any feeling is not good. It is bad for us. Holding on to things, we can’t just let feelings go. Whether it’s anger or anything else, we can’t let it go. We can’t eat it away, we can’t stuff it down. We can’t positive think it away. We can’t just magically feel differently. The only way to get rid of anger or anything else, is to express it. And when I say express it, I mean find a way to release then anger, not just the physical effect of anger. And by expressing anger, I don’t mean yelling and screaming and hitting things. Unless it’s like one of those bags at the gym. The gym that is, of course, in your garage because no one’s going to the gym.

The only way to get rid of any feeling is to acknowledge it, validate it, feel it, give it a voice. Talk about why you’re angry. Talk about it in a way that’s not thinking it away. Remember saying, I’m very angry. That doesn’t do much, but God I’m so mad. That gets it out. That gets it out. So those are just some thoughts on why minimizing is not helpful. We can all be grateful that we’re not in Africa dealing with an Aids crisis and other dire conditions, or something kind of situation in which we’re stuck and helpless and hopeless. And it’s just more awful than the situation that we have. But those situations that other people are going through do not take away our right to acknowledge and experience what we are feeling.

And by the way, that is from a chapter in my book. If you would like to read the first two chapters of my book, you can do so for free. Just head over to DrNinaInc.com. D-R-N-I-N-A-I-N-C.com and sign up to get your two free chapters of my book, The Binge Cure, Seven Steps to Outsmart Emotional Eating.

Okay, now I have a question from Sharon. Sharon says, with a 30 year history of insomnia, I have often tried eating to get to sleep because I was so desperate to go to sleep. It rarely works and just adds on pounds. I’ve been going to sleep clinic for 30 years. I’ve tried all the meds, CBT, sleep hygiene, weighted blankets, [inaudible 00:24:50]. I’m curious about why I can’t fall asleep like other folks. I do not remember having this until after I stopped nursing my twins 30 years ago. It was not it was time to relax in the middle of the night for feedings because only the test pattern was on TV then. The test pattern. Wow. They say it’s due to PTSD related to living with the abuse so long. She had a very abusive relationship. I do know that. So here are my thoughts. Sharon, when we sleep we are the most vulnerable. When we’re asleep, we are absolutely, completely vulnerable. And if you have had a history of abuse, then vulnerability is the scariest thing in the world. Letting go and going to sleep, is putting yourself in position of complete vulnerability. You’re unconscious.

Now logically you know that, what’s going to happen, you’re asleep. Maybe you have an alarm on in your house. Or you know that nothing’s going to happen. You know that logically. So what. Who cares what you know logically. Logic doesn’t matter because it is not logical, it is psychological. Psychologically it’s, if I go to sleep I’m going to be vulnerable and when I’m vulnerable bad things can happen to me.

So I would say, Sharon you have done a lot of work. Clearly, you’ve done everything. But perhaps more needs to be done in the area of vulnerability. Now when you stopped nursing your twins, I guess I’d like to know more about that. What did that mean? Did you have any worries about them sleeping? I know when my older daughter was born, I would wake a thousand times a night. Okay slight exaggeration. I’d wake up multiple times a night. Not because she was crying and needed to be fed or anything. Because I had to see if she was still breathing. And I was constantly nervous. Was she still breathing? I still do that some times and my youngest is 12. And I still make sure she’s breathing. It’s a Mom thing. Doesn’t make sense, but there it is. So I would be also wondering, Sharon, if there was something about putting your twins to bed that might have been activating some fears. But being asleep, again, being asleep is the most vulnerable we can be. And I think that your unconscious is really fighting that. Fighting that hard.

Okay. So I invite anyone else to call. The number is 323-203-0815. 323-203-0815. This is a great time to call because I have no callers in the queue and also if you have any questions. And if you’re on Instagram and you have any questions, maybe that’s you, Josh. I see you there. Have any questions, feel free to ask me. And we will talk.

Okay. I am going to randomly, again, look in my book. You know, keeping yourself … Josh is saying, keeping yourself awake could be self inflicted. Keeping yourself awake can be a way of feeling safe. It comes down to that. Again, logically you know you’re safe, psychologically, it feels very unsafe to be asleep. If being asleep and being unconscious and not being able to see threats coming, means that you’re in danger. So to stave off danger, stay awake. It comes down to that. Again, logically you know you’re not in danger, but the feeling, the feeling that comes over, it’s just … Okay, Josh is saying it could be good, but not every night. Josh, I don’t think it’s necessarily good to not sleep. What Sharon is saying is that she has a chronic sleep problem, she can never go to sleep because is so hyper vigilant. That movie or show or reading a book, or whatever we’re doing up until the wee hours and okay. But that’s different from not being able to sleep because you can’t let yourself relax because if you relax and go to sleep, some part of you feels in danger.

Okay. This is also a little bit for Karlygash, because it’s the bargaining. The bargaining of a way that we operate in the world that is not in our best interest. And this is about weight loss. It’s called, when I lose weight I’ll get him back bargaining. Which is similar, Karlygash, if you’re listening too. When I just tell my mother … Oh, she’s there. When I tell my mom this, when I ___, then she’s going to get it. Then she’s going to be the mom I want her to be. So Karlygash, as you listen, kind of translate that into your situation and anyone else out there who’s listening, translate this to your situation. Because a lot of times when then, is not necessarily about how weight loss lead to something else. But it’s this idea that if I do this, then that will happen. So do you think that losing weight will change your life? Many people believe that by changing the number on the scale, they can change the way they feel and they can change the way people respond to them.

Francesca, for example. Francesca, thought things were going really well with her boyfriend of the year. And when he asked her to come over because he had something important to talk about, she thought he was going to propose. She was all excited. She thought it was all good. Instead, he broke up with her. Did she cry? Did she get upset? Absolutely, but not for long. Soon she was telling me, I know how to get him back. I know just how to get him back. I’m going to lose 15 pounds and I’m going to look so smoking hot, that he’ll be so sorry he broke up with me. And he will be begging to get back together. Francesca was not dealing with the pain and loss of her relationship. She wasn’t considering how it affected her. She certainly wasn’t working through her feelings because she wasn’t feeling it at all.

Instead, she was thinking about getting her boyfriend to come back and in her mind, the way to do that was changing her appearance. Lose 15 pounds and vole`, she would be irresistible. That’s what she thought. Francesca thought she could control her ex-boyfriend by controlling her weight.

And like Francesca, a lot of people believe that when they lose weight, their lives with improve. They’ll be more confident, outgoing, relaxed, and happy. They make statements like the following. They say things like, well when I lose weight, I’ll start dating. When I lose weight, I’ll look for a new job. When I lose weight, I’ll finally have the courage to leave my spouse or my boyfriend or my girlfriend. When I fit into those jeans in the back of my closet, I will be happy. These are all some forms of when, then. The trap. I call it the trap. The when then trap. When the number on the scale is where you want to be, then life will be better.

If this resonates with you, you may believe, like Francesca, that by controlling your weight, you can control and manage many aspects of your life. Including other people. Including your likability, your love ability, and overall happiness. And you can control the way people relate to you. But you can’t control the world by controlling your weight. For Francesca, focusing on losing weight was a way to avoid the pain of the breakup and her powerless over the situation. There’s nothing so awful as when people tell you they don’t want to be with you anymore. And you can’t change their mind. You can’t talk them into it. You can’t say, but … but … but wait, you used to love me. What happened? Let me convince you to love me again. Oh, it’s the most awful thing in the world. Feeling powerless is connected to vulnerability and dependency. Both of which can be extremely difficult.

Two responses to powerlessness are getting angry, and getting busy. Anger is an active emotion whereas powerlessness is a passive emotion. So when we feel powerless, we want to be active, we want to do something. Want to avoid that awful powerless, helpless feeling. So getting mad keeps you from being vulnerable. It keeps you from those raw, painful or depressing states of helplessness. Being busy is also a way of turning passive to active. Eating, counting calories, focusing on achievements and going to the gym all the time, are ways of doing rather then feeling.

So Francesca eventually talked about some of the issues she and her ex-boyfriend had throughout their relationship. And one problem was that he’d been married before and he wasn’t sure if he wanted more kids. But she definitely wanted kids of her own. So she started to question herself and her wishes. She said, “Well maybe I should just be happy being a step mom. Maybe it’s too much to want my own biological kids.” And then she said, “I bet he would’ve wanted kids with me if I were thinner.” So notice how she shifts from being worried about wanting too much to thinking about being too much. Being too big. Weighing too much. And this is an example of how our perceptions of ourselves can be influenced by our emotions, our needs and our wants. If you often feel that you are too much for other people, that you’re too demanding, that you burden other people with your needs. That sense of wanting too much, needing too much, that could be unconscious experience as seeing yourself as literally too big.

And this is what happened to me when I was a kid. If you know the story, if you do, you’re going to hear a little bit of it again. If you don’t, here goes. So when I was five years old, I seemingly, randomly decided that my thighs were too big and somehow I would be a better me if there was less of me. I began to be obsessed with my weight at the age of five. And by the way, I was a perfectly normal weight kid and I wasn’t watching TV and my mom would read Time Magazine. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her, in my life, read any kind of glamor magazine, or anything like that. So I wasn’t exposed to anything in the media that would make me think that I was fat. I was five. Why? Why did I suddenly and seemingly randomly decide that?

Well, later on, actually when I was getting my doctorate and becoming an analyst, I finally realized that I was constantly being told, you’re too much. You’re too loud. Calm down. You’re too excitable. You’re too much. Is the message that I got. Too emotional, too loud, too rambunctious, calm down. My five year old mind took that sense of oh I’m too much for them to handle. Because by the way, [inaudible 00:37:43] so just from a place of energy, plus, by the way, I was five. Just energetically, it wasn’t a good fit in that family. And this idea that I was too much, translated in my five your old mind as I was literally, too much. I was too big. If there was less of me, somehow, I would be better.

And so this is an example of how important the psychology is when it comes to understanding the way that we see ourselves, the way that we experience ourselves. A yearning, by the way … I’m going off on a tangent. That yearning is related to hunger. Hunger for love, hunger for attention, can some times even become physical hunger. As sense of yearning can be translated into physical hunger. We have such a mind body connection.

Josh is asking, I wonder if you were trying to please your mom. Perhaps, unconsciously, mom and dad, who were both telling me that I was too much to handle. And they would get very frustrated with me. So perhaps so. I was unconsciously thinking I’m going to become less, there’s going to be less of me and therefore I won’t be too much to handle. Didn’t work. Didn’t work at all.

Okay. So back to Francesca. Thinking about what’s too much about you and where you got that idea about yourself is important. So people who grew up in families in which emotionality is labeled dramatic. Or that they’re told that they’re over sensitive or ridiculous. They learn to dismiss their feelings. Or they often believe they feel things too intensely and they feel things more intensely than other people. They believe their emotions are too much and then they imagine they’re too much for others. And this can be expressed again in concrete physical terms about their size. Instead of feeling too much, they ate too much or they’re too big. So it’s one thing to want to lose weight for health reasons. Wait. Josh is saying you need to try to bring some giddiness back. Yeah. Because I’m not giddy at all. Cute.

Okay. It’s one thing to try to lose weight for health reasons, but if you’re trying to change your life by changing your weight, take a moment and consider what your weight means symbolically. Weight can represent qualities that you want to get rid of. Losing weight becomes equivalent to losing those unacceptable parts of yourself. It is easier to focus on losing weight than to think about shedding disappointments, fears, concerns, worries, anxieties. Perhaps now it is easier to think about well how do I get rid of the COVID-19, the COVID-19 weight gain everyone’s talking about. Than oh my gosh, we’re in a pandemic, we don’t know the outcome, this is scary. What’s going to happen?

Another example, Alex. Alex was 100 pounds overweight and he was insecure about his appearance. In social situations were really painful because he felt awkward talking with other people. He imagined that when he lost weight, he would become more confident. More social, and he’d have more friends. And as he incorporated the self care strategies that I taught him and as we began to heal the past and why he was eating. He began to lose weight. And eventually, he lost more than 100 pounds. And he felt an overwhelming, liberating sense of self confidence. He felt great.

For a while. And soon some new insecurities surfaced. Alex began to worry that he wasn’t smart enough. He didn’t know enough about politics. He didn’t know enough about the stock market. He didn’t understand business the way he felt he should. He avoided talking to people at parties because he thought they’d realize that he was not as smart as he seemed. He had full on imposter syndrome. So whereas he once worried about the size of his stomach, now he was concerned with the size of his intellect.

So losing weight does not mean you lose the qualities and characteristics about yourself that you don’t like. Losing weight doesn’t change you. It only changes the number on the scale or the size of the label in your jeans. That’s it. If you have fears or insecurities, when you lose weight, those insecurities will absolutely attach to something else. So Alex thought losing 100 pounds would change his life. But what he really needed to lose were his insecurities about himself. He needed to lose the ideas that he had about himself that were rather harsh.

And so we explored … He really wanted a girlfriend. He really, really wanted a girlfriend. So we explored what was keeping him from connecting with women. And he told me that his problem with women stemmed from being a homebody. He would rather stay home and watch a movie than go out to clubs and parties. And I said, what’s wrong with being a homebody? That’s just a preference. So Alex assumed that women preferred guys who rode motorcycles or drove expensive sports cars. [inaudible 00:43:42] all women do not like just one kind of man. Just as all men do not just kind of women. Together we questioned the idea that being a chill out, stay at home kind of guy made him inferior in some way, or unattractive. Well guess what? Good news. I am happy to report that Alex is now married to a woman who also enjoys staying home and watching movies on the couch. Which they’re, of course, doing a lot of. And his wife is not interested in fancy sports cars. And she thinks motorcycles are scary not sexy. I am with her there.

My husband, before I met him, he had a motorcycle and he talked about getting a motorcycle and I’m like, I don’t think so. No. No motorcycle. Not scary. You will just give me anxiety. My wonderful husband, David, does not have a motorcycle which makes me happy.

So when Alex accepted his authenticity, accepted who he was and just remained true to himself, his ideas, his wishes, his likes, his dislikes, his principles, he found someone who’s a good match. And isn’t that wonderful? I love a happy ending. So losing weight is like moving to a different city or a different country. Hoping to have a different life. Wherever you go, there you are. When you lose the negative ideas about yourself, you will be happier and you will feel good about yourself, no matter where you are, no matter how much you weigh. And also that’s how you lose weight for good. I also want to say that Francesca’s view of men was really … I didn’t put this in the book, but to think that a guy would just say oh you lost 15 pounds, now I like you more. That was just really rather shallow of her, I think. We really want to look at who are we. We are more than the number on the scale. And so are other people.

Okay. So last week I talked about some good news. I talked about how The Farmer’s Dog was so cool and what they did as far as if your dog doesn’t like the dog food and your donate it to a shelter. They will refund you which is what they did for me. And as soon as COVID is over I am taking all the food and giving it to some lucky dogs at the shelter. And I really wanted to start talking at the end of each show about good news. So I saw this article that made me very happy. So sweet. This boy in Nigeria, 11 year old boy in Nigeria, loves ballet and belonged to a ballet club in his area. And he danced in the rain barefoot [inaudible 00:46:41]. This was posted and put on Twitter. It went viral and he was offered a scholarship to ABT, American Ballet Theater, one of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world. That was so heartwarming. That made my life happier, reading it, for a moment. And I hope it also brings a smile to your face.

So that is our show today. Just about. I think we have a minute left. But I’m going to end, maybe a minute early. Again, I’m here every Wednesday at 11:00 am Pacific. Here on LA Talk Radio. And streaming on Instagram. If you would like to read the first two chapters of my book, please go to DrNinaInc.com and download your two free chapters. I want everyone to have at least a taste of what I have to say.

Oh Karlygash is saying the ballet guy made her heart warm. And hey Jenny. Thank you. Thank you for saying it was a fantastic show. I’m sorry that we didn’t get to talk to you but hopefully next week. Everyone stay safe. Stay healthy. There is good news out there somewhere. Even among the bad news. And I will bring it to you at the end of every show. If you have something that you want me to share, something that you’ve done or someone’s done for you. Or something you’ve heard about, let me know and I will share it on the show. Until then, again, stay safe. Stay healthy and I’ll see you next week. Bye for now.

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