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Imagine Beyond the Constructs

Updated: Feb 9, 2023

It's been quite a month.

There have been many events in the past few weeks that invited me to consider the lens I was given to see and explain the world. The most recent of which was an interview with author, adrienne maree brown, wherein she said,

"We're living inside of imaginations that other people told us were true... what does it look like to imagine beyond the constructs?"

This can be applied to all aspects of life and it brought me to a space where I spend a lot of mental time: food, bodies, and worthiness.

So much of eating disorder recovery is examining the lens we were given around those three things: food, bodies, and worthiness. To use the concept just introduced, one could say the work of recovery is the work of daring to imagine beyond the constructs. Specifically, what food practices signal worthiness? Which bodies are worthy and which ones are not? Who decides? Is worthiness something one can earn?

There's a lot we could say about the relationship between worthiness and moral-value that many lenses have added to food, through sayings like, "You are what you eat!" There is also the class-implications connected to a food's morality. Oddly enough, canned pees, are cheaper than frozen pees, are cheaper than fresh pees. Which food would you say yields the most "worthiness" according to some lenses? More often than not, it's the expensive one; in this case, the fresh peas.

We could take the social justice approach and ask the question, "Who benefits from this system?" But/and I'm inclined toward Grace Lee Boggs' strategy, who said, "We must transform ourselves before we transform the world."

In the spirit of transforming ourselves and examining the lens through which we see the world, I'd like to invite you to explore these questions with me.

  1. What are my rules around food?

  2. How did I learn these rules?

  3. What happens if I break this rule and how did I learn this?

  4. Who would I be and what would I do without this rule?

  5. Let's imagine beyond these constructs: what could I do tomorrow / this week / this month / this year without this rule?

(If you're an avid reader of my blog, you may recognize that 4th question from an earlier post about destructive thoughts. Feel free to head over there for another approach.)

If food is not the context you are called to explore in this moment, insert whatever feels potent for you in place of food so it looks like...

  1. What are my rules around clothes / bodies / love / pleasure / desire / buying _____

... and then go from there.

While not always possible, whenever turning-inward I encourage people to ground themselves in whatever way they can and set an intention of care. Grounding can look like: three deep breaths, naming 3-5 things you can see/hear/feel, holding something like a rock. We are examining our lens not to necessarily critique ourselves but to critique the lens we are operating under, recognizing that this was likely given to us and served us at some point..

If you are interested in working with me to hold set this container of inquiry and to support in compassionately letting go of old lenses; I would love to hear from you!

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