Having a tantrum

Tuesday is my day this semester to attend classes at university. Which means getting up and ready, then getting in the care, driving for 2 hours, sitting in class for 4 hours, then doing the return drive.

This is the fourth semester that I’ve been doing this routine. The entire time I’ve been doing the drive I’ve had to navigate between 5 & 7 major lots of roadworks as they upgrade the highway after major floods a few years ago.

Today is the first time I’ve done the trip in 2 months due to the break between semesters. There have been changes in the configuration of the works and I am reminded of how painful and stressful it’s been to make this journey in each of the 3 completed semesters so far.

I have mentioned in recent posts that I’ve undertaken a 6 month food coaching program that I’m about 2-3 weeks into. This has created some pretty turbulent emotions even as recently as 2 days ago, so my emotional state has been somewhat fragile.

I’ve been rather negligent with my water intake recently and one of the things to focus on is to increase it so I can clear out some of the toxins in my body.

Can you see where this is going?

Almost 1 litre of water before 10:30am, followed immediately by a 2 hour drive (which turned into almost 3 hours) simply do not mix! I had to stop 3 times in the first hour!

By the time I actually pulled into the car park at uni I was ready to curl up into the fetal position and cry! Especially since 2 of the stops were very close calls! I actually almost pulled over onto the side of the road at one point to cry. Either that or turning around and going home! Or raging.

When I actually arrived I had 10 minutes to navigate my way to the lecture room all the way across campus, which for me means a 40+ minute walk. Up hills and stairs, carrying a heavy bag. And then I’d have had to walk the reverse trip to change rooms for the tutorial, which means leaving the lecture early or being late for the tute (still not sure how to deal with that each week for the rest of the semester).

Given my emotional state I decided to forego stressing myself even more and decided to locate myself outside the tutorial room and blog instead. Take some time to re-centre myself and breathe.

On the way home I stopped at the service station to use the facilities (for the 100th time that day!!) and I looked at all the food in the store. I felt resentful that I couldn’t have any of it. Then I spotted what was probably the only healthy thing in the place and chose to have sushi. But I still felt resentful that I even had to make that choice in the first place.

So, I spent most of yesterday feeling frustrated and resentful that I am in the situation I’m in. Pretty much tantrum material! Feeling disempowered and acting out because I didn’t have “freedom” to choose.

Twenty-four hours later and I’ve had a couple of lightbulbs go off in my head about what happened yesterday. Today I am very grateful for friends who care enough to call me out on my shit and don’t let me get away with it. I’m also grateful for coaches who can see through that same shit, not play into the victim role I was trying to go into and after the bulbs get lit, compliments me on my tenacity and determination to go through this process!

I am very blessed.

4 comments on “Having a tantrum

  1. So Ali, what have you learnt to do differently next time? Remember there are no “failures” only learning curves… And I’m wondering whether you were physically hungry when you saw all that food and felt “resentful”… or whether it was an emotional hunger where you needed to address your emotions rather than go down the same old path of a “food fix” which we all know NEVER fixes anything and leaves us feeling worse than before the “food fix”. You are doing so well to be recognising what’s going on because from there comes growth and change. Keep going girl! xoxo

    • Penny it’s always an emotional thing for me. It’s my brain objecting to the changes I am making so that it can go back into where it is comfortable and remain “safe”. It was my inner 5 year old having a tantrum! LOL

  2. WOW, Ali – I admire the fact that, despite having to jump through all those hoops, you are pursuing higher education AND moving forward in changing the way you nourish your body AS you blog to reach out to others on a similar path.

    Everybody has “down” days and tantrums, especially when things are changing – even Mother Theresa, if you read between the lines of some of her writing. This experience seems to pale in comparison to all your “ups” – no excuses necessary, IMHO.

    Relatively unusual in the coaching profession, I’m not a fan of others “assisting” by digging through the exceptions and encouraging me to, essentially, “do better next time.” Even though their intent is to be truly helpful, I find it demotivating (brain-based: an amygdala activator, which shuts down the pre-frontal cortex) — I do that without their help. In continuing to move forward, it helps me most when others affirm what’s going RIGHT (and the many steps I continue to take to move onward and upward).

    In addition to the latest in neuroscience, my puppy’s brain agrees with my “affirm the positive” thinking. “Bad dog” does nothing to change his behavior – catching him when he does what I want him to do and praising him for it not only helps him change his behavior more quickly, we both get to feel great about life during the learning.

    It sure seems to me that there’s a lot to affirm in your case – you stayed true to your intent despite your feelings about it. GOOD JOB!

    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to educate a world!”

    • Thanks so much for the support Madelyn! This post was almost a year ago now, and while I recognise that things are a lot different since I wrote this (specifically in terms of changing mindset), I certainly still have times where my inner 5 year old comes out with some tantrums! Changing the relationship I have had with food for 40 or more years is certainly hard work! I love that your comment refers to some of that brain based science to inform forward progress. You’re certainly right, it makes a big difference when the positive is the focus. And from the neurobiological perspective, it is much easier to achieve a goal when you are approaching it rather than avoiding it.

      In my journey to self-love I have reached a point where I have seen what is possible in my life. And therefore I literally do not have a choice in whether I remain where I am or continue coming forward. Well, I could choose to remain where I am. But I choose not to because I know where my spirit belongs. So I choose to learn the tough lessons by putting myself out there and striving for what I know is possible. And in doing so I learn to live my purpose.

      Thank you for taking the time to stop by and comment xx

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