Sunday, 3 October 2010

Eat, Pray...Groove!

I've got you under my skin

Susie Orbach, psychologist and writer of the famous book, Fat is a Feminist issue, has commented on the film release of Eat, Pray, Love based on the runaway best-seller by Elizabeth Gilbert, and highlighted the Eat part. She argues that for most women, following Gilbert's example and spending some time just enjoying food without the guilt and recriminations would simply be impossible, so accustomed are we to denying and suppressing one of our most basic appetites. 

She compares the appetite for food to the other human need for sleep and points out how ludicrous it would be if we used the same language about sleep that we do with food: comparing amounts, worrying that we are going to go out of control if we have too much etc. 

I for one, don't share this obsession with food with my fellow women and I have only just come to realise how unusual I am to have reached my late thirities without developing any hatred of it. I enjoy food and the feeling of denial is completely unfamiliar to me. That is not to say I pig out on unhealthy items, but I have lived my entire life giving myself carte blanche to follow my natural desires and appetites. I give my body what it wants, when it wants and stop when it no longer wants it. The fact is that when a food is no longer forbidden, you rarely binge on it. 

Hence chocolate is not the secret gorging habit with me that it is with so many women who deny themselves in public, then indulge behind closed doors. Once every month, my body tells me it would like to have chocolate, the rest of the time, it doesn't - so I don't eat it. 

It's not that I don't care about being healthy either. I naturally veer towards healthy foods and I work out in the gym, but not from a desire to lose weight. Until very recently I was the only woman I know of who did not have weighting scales - I have just bought some in order to weigh a large package. I exercise because I like to feel strong, healthy and powerful in my physical form, sentiments that I realise that most women are divorced from.

But I am starting to realise what an exception I am not to be continuously obsessing about my appearance and denying myself food. I am an oddity not to live with perpetual guilt and the perceived pressures on women are only increasing.  With the advent of 'celebrity culture', it has become totally unacceptable for a woman to be larger than a UK size 10 at any age. This has happened so quickly, we have hardly noticed. 

The supermodels of the early nineties that I grew up with were thin enough, but now even they would be rejected from the fashion world if they were starting out now. And you only have to look at footage of amateur beauty competitions from the 1950s to see how quickly we have gone from these smiling belles, in it for a laugh seemingly not caring if their 'thighs are too big' to the American size zero as the norm that we have today. 

Out of the groove

What does it matter? Why am I blogging about this in the first place? Because I have realised that we women are doing more damage than we perhaps know. By denying ourselves such basic appetites and freedoms, we tend to shrink our consciousness instead of expand. By doing this we tend to deny ourselves our own creative flow. 

If we are obsessed by our appearance and how others think of us, it is hard to get so lost in a creative project that we don't bother with grooming as we are consumed by the flow of our own creative fire. When I am truly in my Genius Groove, I don't give a toss what I look like. In fact self-consciousness is the antithesis of creativity, because self-consciousness brings your awareness back into your body, back into space and time and out of the quantum field where our genius resides, according to the new scientific ideas. So the more we are attached to the obsession with our outer appearance the less likely we are to let it all go and lose ourselves in our own creativity. 

How can we hear the call of the soul, if we anchor our attention to the body and stay wrapped up in constant guilt of what we may or may not have eaten? To truly get into the groove needs a commitment to the authentic self - a love of who you are right now - not who you might be once you have lost some weight or have bigger boobs. 

Being authentic

A connection to the authentic spirit within opens you up to the entire universe that lies waiting for you, with its dazzling dimensions. Within each and every soul lies treasures that make Victoria Beckham's latest shopping spree look positively anaemic and more importantly, irrelevant as a new world opens up that puts our physical, material reality into a greater perspective of multiple dimensions of consciousness. 

And within the self, lies the connection to your own creativity, your own Genius Groove. If you can hear the voice of your creativity, if it grips you so strongly that even for a few moments in a week you can drown out the tugs to be; thinner, prettier, to have this, have that, to clean, to put the kids before your own happiness; you are on your way. 

So ladies, let yourselves go! Leave the hair straighteners and the pluckers for just one day -  get wild! Look into your own eyes in the mirror and look at who you really are - your true self naked and beyond a body.  When you really start to hear your inner calling and get into the Genius Groove, guess what? All the guilt and the hatred of yourself will start to fall away as you start to connect to the deepest aspect of you - unconditional love. And ironically, when you are truly connected to your self and in your Genius Groove, you will become more beautiful than you have ever been, because you no longer care about what is on the outside, you are too busy having a love affair with the true self within and that is where true beauty lies.   


  1. I agree 99%. The current diet terror (and even healthy food terror) is the antithesis of pleasure. A woman who cannot enjoy her food, judges herself constantly as to what and how much she eats derives no pleasure from eating. In fact, she loses the ability to feel pleasure at all, which is catastrophic. (Binging is not pleasure, binging is silencing the withdrawal symptoms.)

    And the ability to feel pleasure is at the very centre of being a Woman. Pleasure anchors especially us, women, in our bodies and allows us both to enjoy them and to keep them healthy enough to cope with the requirements of our Genius Groove. Tantra says that our body is a microcosm which is a mirror image of the macrocosm, the Universe. Wanna get to know the Universe? Love your body and feel good in it!

    From my experience as a psychologist and personal coach (new paradigm personal coach should I say..) I can tell you that the more pleasure a woman derives from her food, the better she knows what she likes, the deeper the sensations she gets out of the act of eating, the better quality she naturally chooses and, most importantly, THE MORE SHE CONNECTS WITH THE ADEQUATE AMOUNTS AND TYPES OF FOOD THAT ARE RIGHT FOR HER. Result? Normalisation of body weight guaranteed (after dealing with possible emotional reasons of overeating). Maybe not currently marketed underweight, but yes beautiful, feminine body with curves in the right places.

    I eat chocolate, sugared peanuts, lots of olive oil and butter, little carbs and generally good quality food because this is what my body asks me for. Since I changed my "eating paradigm" over a year ago, I won slimmest waist ever, bigger boobs, better hair and skin etc. I also feel beautiful in myself and very feminine, whatever I wear! I reserve the notion of "diet" for dealing with a tummy bug which I am currently nursing. And so do all my clients.

    Recommended reading to get into the Eating Pleasure Groove: "French Women Don't Get Fat" by Michelle Guiliano. Check her blog as well.

    Last word: as my wise friend says, one's attitude to food reflects one's attitude to sex. A woman who doesn't enjoy sex and own sensuality (body) strips herself of all her power.

    A very feminine kiss,

    Quantum Surfer

  2. YES YES YES! This is exactly what I needed to read today as my body was whispering for me to skip the "working out to lose weight" slurp delicious soups, drink warm herbal teas and a bit of hot chocolate and just hibernate here in NJ:USA and go within to connect with my Inner Being :)...and so I shall! I am also now choosing to do joyous exercise because it feels good to do so, not to look any certain standard--it is very liberating to be so authentic!

  3. Amen sistah, I like your groove!!

  4. Thank you for this! I feel blessed to have clicked on your link after your comments on Yasuhiko's fb page. I am very curious about your upcoming book and it's connection to Mary. You certainly are intriguing! Be continually blessed in your groove!