Since I've been asking "why" and examining my behavior relative to answering that question, I've noted some things about my appetite.
For example, the days I eat more it's because I'm hungrier. Go figure. When that happens it scares me. Why? I feel out of control. I don't want to eat. But it seems I can't not eat. Something compels me.
But now, instead of allowing myself to panic--though it is tempting to do so--I try to direct myself through self talk. Instead of thinking "stop!!--you're blowing it", I gently tell myself " you can eat that if you really want it". I give myself permission. And the result? I do eat it, but find myself arriving at a stopping point sooner and being satisfied with it and that being the end of it.
And I've noted that after a day or two of being non-stop hungry, what follows are a day or days of not being hungry at all--in fact nothing sounds good and I can't decide what to eat, and as a result eat very little.
There is a balance, a cadence. Just realizing that is reassuring. Those days when I feel out of control because my hunger is driving me are temporary. Unless, that is, I respond by going off the deep end, throwing in the towel and "giving up" which renders me feeling helpless-- a victim-- and so totally not in control, believing I'll never get there (to my desired goal). That belief --"I'll never get there!"--will become my intention sealing my fate, sealing my failure.
How may times in the past, when those difficult days came, did I resign myself to failure instead of riding out the natural ebb and flow of hunger and appetite? Sadly, too many. But hopefully no more. The knowledge that it is normal that there will be days when I'm starving, but those days will be offset by days when I'm not hungry at all, should make a difference in my response and the final outcome.
What about you? Do you panic on those days when you are hungrier and feel helpless and out of control when you give in and eat? Do you give up, quit? Or do you self talk, redirect and refocus?
I just hope I'll remember the next time I have unmitigated hunger that it will be followed by days of no appetite.