Oh my oh my. We are plunged right back into the Beck "heart of darkness" with respect to intensely complex cognitive techniques.
Here, she is actually synthesizing THREE tough days into one lesson. It is a blockbuster. It is a cognitive triathlon, for sure --
Day 33 (yesterday): eliminate emotional eating.
Day 26: recognize thinking mistakes (remember, there were 9, or maybe 12 of those).
Day 27: master the 7 questions technique.
In my 2001 blog, I applied this approach -- conscientiously -- to a particular situation of emotional eating. Which I face over and over again. Namely, coming in the door after a tough day at work, in a state of despair over any one of my difficult child custody problems, and reaching for the peanut butter.
I most sincerely could not write a better synthesis of Beck's strategy for solving problems today. I acknowledged the negative emotion. I identified the thinking error (s). I asked the seven questions. And I concluded that this approach for solving problems was precisely how I could avoid reaching for the peanut butter.
All true. At some level, and when I'm most successful and conscious of what's going on (making myself BE conscious of what's going on) this is what I do.
So if you think that you actually would benefit from Beck's cognitive triathlon -- by all means, click the link. But it is a LOT of thinking. I question whether most of us, most of the time, can and actually WILL do all of that . . . . So, if any of you do actually re-read that 2011 blog, whaddya think: is it practicable?? Can it be used, really?
Last night I was at one of those fundraising gala dinners, honouring a lawyer in my community. And there were so many many lawyers in the room.
So many of those lawyers whom I know from my cases.
So many of whom deal with the same kind of high-stress problems that make the jar of peanut butter so enticing for me. (Or their own version of addictive foods, for them).
And, without wishing to be complacent, so many of whom (ahem) pretty clearly are NOT armed with Beck's cognitive techniques. Although nobody gets out of law school alive without being pretty handy with cognitive recall and analysis and synthesis. So: they are clearly capable of it . . . if they wanted to be. Right?
OK then: before the gala I'd been to the gym for cardio and upper and lower body strength training. I'd selected a "challenge" outfit. I had a substantial snack, protein rich, before going. Which made it possible to skip all the fatty deep-fried appetizers offered, no eating standing up. Also skipped the cocktails. No choice. When we sat down, I ate all the salad, slowly (it was great). I skipped all but a spoonful of the soup: truffle! And very rich. Permitted myself one small piece of bread, lightly buttered. Then ate almost all the entrée -- the veggies (shoulda been way more veggies), the chicken (thank goodness, not dead cow), and some of the potatoes, whipped version but didn't detect a whole lotta cream/butter. With a very small amount of white wine for the toasts. I skipped the dessert (and it was ooey-gooey chocolate too). Came home and had a small apple! And a small square of Lindt bittersweet, 30 calories.
Tracked it all as best I could. I'm sure I came in within my calorie range for the day -- and my weight is absolutely steady this morning.
This is a great Beck refresher for me -- this is as tough as it gets.
Still: those child custody problems are so often so absolutely intractable. They are. And until there is significant reform in the legal system, they will continue to be. They will. And my control of my weight seems pretty insignificant in the face of that suffering: the very real suffering of children. But: I am reminding myself that kids from split families derive no benefit at all from me stuffing my face either. And I am continuing to work as hard as I can to address these legal issues both globally-- reform efforts-- and locally -- my own clients . . . Gotta say, with most days very little indication of success, at least of the kind that would matter, the kind that's more than winning.
Oh well oh well oh well.