We all have cravings.
Every single one of us longs to connect with the people and things that will make us feel whole, alive, loved, and satisfied.
I’d say, in fact, that this whole human experience of ours is essentially built on a bedrock of craving. It’s human nature, after all, to yearn, to long, to want, to desire.
So I ask you, with genuine curiosity, genuine interest:
What do you most crave?
I’m certain that it’s not really that peanut butter cup you’ve got tucked away in the glove compartment of your car, or the triple venti latte with a shot of syrup that you rely on every afternoon to get you through another stressful day on the job.
I bet it’s not that glass of wine you automatically reach for to help you relax at the end of a long, hard day. Nor is it the cookies, cakes, and other goodies you spend a lot of time daydreaming (and beating yourself up) about.
It’s not the impulse to run away from your partner, or to yell at your kids, or to impetuously quit the job that is wrong for you—though we’ve all certainly had these moments, too.
What I want to know is what lies underneath all of these itchy, uncomfortable feelings?
What incredibly important and vital needs of yours are going unmet, unacknowledged, unfed?
What are you not getting from your food, your environment, your life, that makes you think you have no option but to overeat, overwork, act out, isolate, or overspend?
In other words, what do you most desire?
What will make you feel most passionately alive? These are, I believe, the most important questions we can ask ourselves, and the answers are to be found in our cravings.
Whatever you need, it’s rarely something that money can buy, but it is—and will continue to be—profoundly influenced by what you put into your mouth, what you do with your days, and what you either say or leave unsaid.
If you’ve come to the point where what you’re feeding yourself or telling yourself is filling, but not fulfilling, well, that means that the message buried beneath that craving just hasn’t gotten through to you yet.
What most of my clients want is to feel radiantly alive and well.
They want to wake up each day and step into their lives from a deeply authentic and honest place and know that the actions they take, the decisions they make, will truly reflect their most heartfelt values.
They want to really believe, way down in their deepest soul, that they are valuable and worthwhile and that their choices matter. That they are loved and seen.
The key to achieving this profound level of comfort with the self is simple: learn to listen to your cravings.
Listen to them, and learn to honor them.
This is as true for stay-at-home-moms, the retired accountant with grandkids, the start-up entrepreneur, and the high level executive. (and I’ve worked with all of you)
This is easy, but it is the hardest thing you will ever learn to do, because it takes putting yourself first in ways that are radically new, even frightening, for most of us.
But it’s time.
It is time to stop mindlessly trying to get our cravings to stop bugging us. The irony here is that they will only loosen their grip on us when we commit to stop, listen, and learn from them.
Only when you do this, when you learn to stop reacting and get quiet and really listen, will your cravings become what they truly are: your greatest guide.
In my book, Women, Food, And Desire, I share how to listen to your cravings. Through stories from my own life, and stories from my clients, you can make peace with your body and your heart so you can truly, finally be at ease in the world.
Because, in the end, that’s what we really crave: to belong, to be loved, to be well, especially within ourselves. We all want to know, really feel, that we are perfect human beings, with no limitations on how we get to look, whom we get to love, what kind of contributions we’ll decide to make in our lives.
We’ve lost enough time battling our bodies, giving in to the societal pressure that says we have to look or be or eat “just so,” and we’ve done this by hiding our truth from ourselves and everyone else
We’ve been cowering in shame long enough.
It’s time. It’s time for us all to lay down our weapons of self-destruction.
It’s time for us to become the exquisite caretakers of our own deepest desires.
In order to do this, we need to understand the four root causes of cravings, respect, and embrace our cravings.
What are your cravings trying to tell you? What can you learn from them?
How will you honor them?
I want to hear from you:
In the comments below – share your cravings, and what they mean to you.