In Jennifer Louden's book, The Life Organizer, she writes,
"Where is the line between pleasure or comfort and numbing?"
Louden has named our numbing devices as "Shadow Comforts."
When we are anxious, disconnected, vulnerable, alone, and feeling helpless,
the booze and pills and food and
work and endless hours online feel like comfort,
but in reality
they are only casting their long shadows over our lives.
"It's not what you do, it's why you do it," says Louden.
This invitation is to think about the intention behavior of our choices
and to discuss these issues with family, close friends or a helping professional.
You can eat a piece of chocolate cake - as a wonderful slice of sweetness,
or you can cram an entire piece of cake
into your mouth without even tasting it
in a frantic attempt to soothe yourself
---- a shadow comfort.
I bet you have done this before, for I know I have!
Again, "It's not what you do; it's why you do it," comes to mind.
Ultimately this is a question about what we know
about ourselves and how we feel.
It's about our spirit. "Are my choices comforting and nourishing my spirit,
or are they temporary reprieves from vulnerability and difficult emotions
ultimately diminishing my spirit?
Are my choices leading me to wholeheartedness
or do they leave me feeling empty and searching?
This requires self examination and reflection.
These questions transcend what we know
and how we feel --
they are about our spirit.
Sitting down to a wonderful meal is nourishment and pleasure.
Eating while I am standing, be it in front of the refrigerator or inside the pantry,
is always a red flag.
Sitting down to watch one of my favorite shows on television is pleasure.
Flipping through the channels for an hour is numbing.
Pause and think about what behavior
is more nourishing to your spirit.
Brene Brown - Daring Greatly.