Wednesday, April 3, 2013
What's this all about? Part II: GIVE
If "crave" represents scarcity, then the "give" part of my blog represents abundance.
I get a kick out of playing with words and phrases. The day I came up with this phrase, I was in my cubicle at work (does anyone have a cubicle at home?), frustrated with cravings, but had been in therapy enough years to know I needed to do allow my feelings and do something with them. It just wasn't my first choice. A snack would have been my first choice-- or Ed's first choice (ED = eating disorder)-- but I took a break and pulled out a piece of paper and doodled and wrote words.
I wrote "crave" over and over. I wrote everything that rhymed with "crave." I wrote everything that started with "cr." I drew a casket ("grave" rhymes with "crave). I googled "crave." Every phrase I saw was about satisfying a craving (here I was trying NOT to give in to the urge) or reducing cravings (believe me, just the word "reduce" triggered my scarcity mentality). Then a rhyme stood out from my list:
While my scarcity mentality had me trying to get, not give, and I knew all about giving in to cravings, I realized that there was something different there. Something I needed to flip around to flip my mindset. So I brought in the what-ifs:
What if I GAVE what I CRAVE?
Instead of the drained feeling I get when I've given and given and have nothing else to give, I felt the teeniest bit of spaciousness. Room for abundance. A hint of a new well to draw on. What if?
Well, first I would have to know what I crave. The idea of going around handing my co-workers candy bars because I wanted them was laughable. Not that I don't like to share or bring in the occasional office treat, but I pictured myself physically giving what I craved, and I looked silly. Clearly, that is not what I craved. I needed to figure out what it is, and then figure out how to give it. And to whom to give it.
I was awfully good at giving to others (whether or not they appreciated was I was giving)-- or I thought I was. Of course, I ended up taking any time my well ran dry, generally making a mess of any giving I had done. But at least it was something I had practice at, despite not being good at giving to myself. At first, I practiced mostly on my husband. When he was driving me up a tree, I paused to figure out what I was craving from my interaction with him, then I identified what his variation of that might be, and I looked for a little way of giving that to him. When I felt judged by him, and pointing out that he was being judgmental didn't help, I identified my craving for acceptance, then turned it around and figured out a way to accept him.
After that, I got a little obsessed and tested my phrase all over, practicing on everyone, and learning to give to myself. I'm not an expert at giving what I crave, and it has not solved my problems, and it doesn't replace the Golden Rule, or the Serenity Prayer, or any other tasty morsel of love and wisdom, but I have one more tool in my toolbox for turning my mind from scarcity to abundance. If I crave, then deep down there is enough to give.