I struggled for YEARS to give up sugar. I tried everything: switching to honey and argarve syrup, snacking on raisins, giving it up for lent, swearing off… nothing worked for me. I could be doing really well with my no-sugar change initiative, and then suddenly the part of me with a major sweet tooth took over again in and I’d be right back to the chocolate, sweets, cake and crunchy-nut-cornflakes. It was a tiring, discouraging cycle.
So what changed for me? Through learing about Internal Family Systems, I got to know myself as a multitude of parts, rather than just one ‘me’ that was crazy about sugar. I realised that it was a part of me that had me hooked on sugar binges, while other parts were dying to stop for good. And this ‘realising’ happened from within… a real ‘Ah-haaaa’ and quite a relief….
These moments of realisation led to releasing sugar from my life for good, effortlessly: something that wasn’t needed any more fell away. It came from gradually getting to know the sugar-loving part of me over time, and finding out what its role in my internal family of parts. I came to befriend this part of me, and it trusted me enough to share about how it was trying to serve me. I cam to appreciate how hard it had been working for so long, though it’s work had been misguided. The part could receive my appreciation and our respectful connection was based on love and respect.
I found out that the part was trying to protect vulnerable parts of me, through soothing and distracting them so that I didn’t feel what they felt. It didn’t ultimately work, and the part came to acknowledge this, and relaxed in order to let me guide my choices instead.
My sugar-addicted part sensed me and felt safe with me and realised that I could look after those lonely, sad, or anxious parts of me better than all the icecream in Italy ever could, or did. It learned to relax and release it’s stressful role. Now it serves me in a much more creative and wholesome way.
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