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Are You Making Yourself Sick Trying to Be Perfect? - April 2019

Yesterday I had a session with a young woman who has been suffering from eating disorders her whole life.

She has gained the weight, lost the weight, gained the weight, lost the weight, gained the weight.

If this sounds like you, please open your heart of compassion for yourself and read on.

I’m not here to judge you, I’m here to offer some much needed insight that you may not have heard from your nutritionist, personal trainer, diet book or eating disorder coach.

This young woman had become so sick that when she first came to me she worried she might have MS, multiple sclerosis. She had already been diagnosed with intracranial hypertension, a neurological disorder in which cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pressure within the skull is too high.

Her ophthalmologist had tied many of her symptoms to her weight and warned her not to gain even one more pound.

Talk about pressure!

Talk about fear…

So let me talk to you about how our session went.

It wasn’t our first session.

We had been getting into the nitty gritty of the deep inner healing work that I had advised her would be necessary to turn herself truly around.

I always ask for guidance at the beginning of every session about what we should work on.

“It’s either your relationship with yourself and/or your relationship with food,” I advised. “This may sound like a chicken and the egg problem, which came first, as these issues are completely intertwined.”

She chose to work on her relationship with food.

We started by identifying the top three emotions that had in the past triggered her to overeat.

I got loneliness, anger and sadness.

She got anger, sadness and fear.

“I think the loneliness is attached to fear,” she admitted, as she felt afraid whenever she was alone or was feeling abandoned. Once again, the issues were so all intertwined that it was hard to tell which came first.

Then I had her think, in the case of each of these triggering emotions, where in her body she had felt the anger, sadness and fear.

In each case, she had felt the uncomfortable emotion either in her stomach, around her eyes, chest or sometimes around her throat.

She had been feeling terribly afraid about her physical health, but I pointed out to her when in the future she felt discomfort she might want to ask herself if what was coming up was actually simply her own emotions.

And then we discussed something she had never before heard about.

One of the many differences between men and women is that when men compare themselves to anybody, they compare themselves to an actual human.

Inside of every woman, on the other hand, is an ideal woman.

I learned this very valuable information from Allison Armstrong, relationship expert.

If you’ve never heard about Allison or her profoundly important work, head  right over to www.understandmen.com and sign up for any or all of her courses. I’ve studied with Allison personally and attended a long list of her life-changing seminars.

So back to this ideal woman.

The ideal woman inside of every woman is an inner bitch.

She holds the picture of what each woman thinks she should look like, be like, act like and have.

My ideal woman, for example, thinks I should walk around with a pink purse and matching pink shoes – designer of course.

The thing about the ideal woman is once you’ve got the belt, you have to get the shoes. Once you have  reached the moment where the scale clicks what she thinks is the right number (deathly skinny of course), there’s still something else that’s wrong with you – if not your looks, your job, the way you laugh, your house, how much money you make, the car you drive, etc.

You can never quite measure up.

Her demands are endless.

I asked my client to describe her ideal woman. This is what she got:

capable of anything
having everything together
look perfect 
never in sweat pants
nice hair and makeup
dresses nicely
in shape
specific look – skinny 
be fun all the time
is good at everything
doesn’t have any issues
doesn’t have any mental health issues
doesn’t have any physical issues
I was reminded of the ideal woman when I read that the woman’s fashion designer Kate Spade had committed suicide that very morning. Her sister revealed that Kate had suffered from mental illness but didn’t want treatment in case news of that fact might damage her brand.

She preferred to be known as a happy person whose colorful designs left sparkles everywhere.

Oh the ideal woman can kill you alright.

Just in case you thought she might actually be on your side, she can make you really really sick before she finally actually kills you if you keep allowing her to run your life.

I asked my client to visualize her ideal woman.

She had long hair – really long hair apparently, and was wearing a red long “fun” dress, red high heel platform shoes and gold hoop earrings.

Then I asked my client to listen to her ideal woman and hear what she had to say.

“You don’t have to look like this in order to be happy,” my client’s ideal woman admitted.

“There’s a chance if you did look like this you would be even more unhappy.”

Then I had my client visualize her higher spiritual self.

Just like you have an ideal woman who drives for perfection in literally every area, you also, thank God, have a higher spiritual self who knows your truth.

Her higher spiritual self was just sitting with long hair feeling happy wearing a white T-shirt and blue jeans with her legs crossed in a Buddha position.

I asked my client to listen to what her higher spiritual self had to say.

“Let her go,” the higher spiritual self said of the ideal woman.

“Go discover who you actually want to be.”

If what I’m writing here strikes a chord, take a moment now and go write down what your own ideal woman is pressuring your to look like, to be like, to have, to be.

My ideal woman, for example, once wanted to have a play on Broadway, a book on The New York Times Bestseller List, to drive a Porsche, to be perfectly fit, to have the perfect friends, the perfect husband, the perfect life. And then I settled for just happy!

If you’ve been struggling with your weight, you’re not actually fighting anybody other than your own ideal woman.

Once we had identified that there were actually these two woman living inside – the ideal woman and the higher spiritual self – I asked my client how she could tell who was actually in charge in any given moment.

When is the ideal woman in charge?

“When I’m feeling not good enough, when I feel I’m not living up to my expectations or the expectations of others or I have feelings of fear.”

And when is the higher spiritual self actually in charge?

“When decisions are easy – more clear – the answers are more clear. When I have more calmness when making decisions with thoughts.”

I gave my client just one piece of homework for the week.

“Throughout your day, just ask yourself, ‘Who’s in charge? WHO HAS GOT MY BODY RIGHT NOW?'”

If you recognize that your own ideal woman has been making you sick, mentally, emotionally or physically, please don’t dispair. Get help.

Ask your own higher spiritual self to have compassion for your ideal woman. She’s just trying to survive in a world in which she projects her own self rejection.

What is healing? Healing happens when you open your compassionate heart and practice accepting more and more of who you really are.



Written by  Catherine Carrigan

More articles by Catherine at catherinecarrigan.com

Ireland Tour with Maria O'Farrell Carr

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