Overwhelmed by choice[s]?

Thank you for your great comments on my last posts! It is relieving to know I’m not the only one experiencing things a certain way. I will admit, though, that I was hesitating about publishing my last post because the topic seemed too … simple.

Whether or not to do something is never an easy decision to make for me. Be it deciding which posts to publish, simply choosing my wardrobe in the morning – should I really combine this dress with the red belt?  –  or deciding on which field of studies to apply on after finishing school.

Indecisiveness has been hindering me from many chances life offered. Whether is was the summer camp I applied for too late one summer resulting in me still not having been to Italy yet. Or the dress I couldn’t decide buying on right away and which was sold out in every shop when I finally did. However small some of these opportunities were, my grievance about missing them seemed disproportionally large to others. I can’t blame them, though, because my anger deep within wasn’t about the single things but about my failure in making the “right” decision. About being overwhelmed by the choices given, thinking about every tiny consequence possibly resulting for far too long.

Polkadots are a standby I happily choose when it comes to the question of what to wear.

While others are jumping at opportunities, having fun and living life, I am stuck in place pondering the pros and cons of a certain decision. What I might miss out on if I attend a fellow student’s party and in the end missing out not only on the one event in question.  Rather passing a chance on getting more involved with the whole class. This is not to say I had no friends in university or elsewhere or didn’t get along with my fellow students. But I can’t say I wouldn’t enjoy getting to know the latter a bit better.

Being in recovery from an ED involves yet another huge decision to make every day: What to eat. Every person in my life – from family to friends, my therapist and others – thinks eating as a part of recovery should be amazing. “You’re allowed to eat your heart out and not watch your diet – I wish I could do that!”, is what I get to hear more often than I’d like to. If only it was that easy.

A recent recipe success: Cheesy Brussel & Apple Barley Risotto from Peachy Palate.

Because really, it’s exactly this freedom offering up too much room for decision. It starts at breakfast at doesn’t end until the last snack at night. While restriction meant cutting out certain foods hence hindering me from trying new recipes now it’s the sheer overflow of delicious looking recipes making me unable to decide. The final result? I’m still sticking mostly to old standby dishes and “favourites” – unsure how much of these are true favourites or only “safe” bets ED makes me stick to. I thought it was logical to be overwhelmed by the large selection of recipes cookbooks and blogs offerend me. But as of late, I find myself wondering whether being overwhelmed isn’t a decision I – or the ED part of me – knowingly make(s).

Most often, I plan on trying a certain new recipe at lunch and then deviate from the plan ending up unsatisfied with either an uninspired veggie mish-mash instead or a dozen small snacks. Why? Well, let’s have a look at today:  I worked from 12 to 6 with no break meaning that I was ravenous by the time I came home. Out of the window went the plan of the curry I had meant to try. In came the random bits and bites of everything that seemed semi-appealing. Highly dissatisfying to say the least.

Fruity & creamy

Far from dissatisfying snack of frozen Alpro Soya peach dessert. Ice cream wins me over every time.

All the while I kept excusing myself. I didn’t feel like standing over the stove for hours whipping up an elaborated dish after a long shift at work  or Oh, well, seeing as it’s 6.30 PM already I can just have a snack now since I’ll have dinner soon in anyway. Hence missing out once on an opportunity to try new foods and recipes once again.

But I don’t want to allow myself these lame excuses anymore. After all, there are many people having far busier schedules than me yet still eating properly. All I need is to plan and structure my days better. Because food – and life in general – isn’t waiting for me. It’s about me seizing the opportunities and living life.

Do you find yourself struggling with decisions or do you have an easy time choosing between options?

Whether you have/had an ED or not: Is it difficult for you to decide on what to eat at times? Do you find yourself in food ruts or constantly try new recipes?

Are there any tips you have for food planning on busy days? Do you plan meals in advance for the week?

I’m looking forward to hearing your experiences and tips!

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4 thoughts on “Overwhelmed by choice[s]?

  1. Kat says:

    Oh,I am the worst at making decisions on my own,honestly.
    Clothes,books,whatever… And naturally,food-wise.
    During my worst times,I always asked my mom what I should eat – it drove her crazy because I mostly wasn’t satisfied with her choices either but at the same time feeling unable to do the opposite in the end. I was crying,my mom was crying… It was awful.
    That’s what Eating Disorders are doing to us and our loved ones… But well,that’s another story.
    However,I definitely understand your struggles – deciding what to eat can be very stressful to say the least. And you kniow what’s the worst? It wouldn’t even HAVE to be that complicated if we only were able to eat what we’re craving,not what we feel “safe” about. Cause let’s be honest,when so you ever eat what you truly,really want?
    In truth,it’s not the recipes or the long cooking time that makes it so difficult to bring yourself to cooking. It’s the fear.
    It starts with searching for the recipes,or only seeing the picture of that respective dish,and then reading the ingredients. The first question in your mind is: “Will I be able to eat this? Is there anything “scary” in this dish?” If there’s nothing,you’re relieved and it will be easier to try the recipe; you’ll most likely do it very soon. If there’s a bit,you think: “Someday… But not now. I can save it,though.” – and probably never try it afterwards. If there’s a lot,well,you don’t even consider trying it anytime; no need to talk about this any further.
    Then,it continues with buying the ingredients. If they’re safe,no problem. If they’re not,it will be harder… And in your head,you keep telling yourself “Someday,someday…” – but that day will. not. happen.
    At least if you don’t kick yourself in your butt and BUY that food. COOK that dish. BAKE those cookies, And EAT them afterwads!
    I’m sorry if I’m completely wrong,but I just want you to realize you’re not “too lazy” or “too busy” or whatever – you are too anxious. But that is something you can work on. Something we can work on TOGETHER.
    You’re not alone,darling,and only because I am telling you all this it doesn’t mean I am better after all. But hey,we can do it! I believe in you. I hope you do,too.

    • letsgetupandlive says:

      You really hit the nail on the head with what you said. Deep within I know it’s my anxiety keeping me from trying new recipes. It’s the “But I dont know whether I’ll like it and if it satiates me – what, if it doesn’t?” seeing as I’d then “have” to eat more afterwards. I wish I didn’t have these thoughts but you’re right: We (!) are able to do it!

  2. glidingcalm says:

    I am often indecisive too, but I’m trying more and more to listen to what I WANT, and less what outside opinions are pressuring me to do! Same with food… I’ve found that my body is pretty good at telling me…more carbs one day, or more protein another day. And blogs are sometimes hard…. I find that I eat much more than most bloggers, and I also find that sometimes they make me feel guilty for not eating healthier, so I try to be more aware of what I’m reading nowadays!

    Best of luck to you, and remember to be kind to yourself and always count your victories!!

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