Your Relationship With Food: Facing the Truth

April 29, 2010   •  Posted in: 

A brilliant woman pianist once gave an intimate performance for a group of society women in the sun-drenched library of a country estate. Later, while dessert was being served, a guest approached the pianist, gushing, “I would give anything in the world to play as you play.”

The virtuoso looked at the woman for a moment and said, “I’m sorry madam, but I don’t think you would.”

Red-faced, but undaunted, the guest tried again, quietly this time, “But really, I truly would give anything to play the piano with the skill that you do.”

The pianist, realizing she had not successfully made her point, said “No, my dear, I’m afraid you really wouldn’t. If you would, you might play better than I, at least equally as well. Yes, you’d give anything except your time, the one thing it takes to be good. You wouldn’t sit on a bench practicing hour after hour, day after day, while your friends were out having fun, enjoying parties such as this and otherwise getting on with their lives.”

Then she smiled.

“I hope you understand that I’m not criticizing you. I don’t even know you. I’m just telling you when you say you’d give anything to play the piano as I do, that in your heart of hearts, you don’t really mean it. You really don’t mean it at all.”

That story is about one very honest woman. The talented pianist knew that in music only a few succeed at what they attempt, even though most will say they want to be great, famous, well paid, and acknowledged with their name ablaze in lights. But in reality, only the dedicated few will realize that dream. Likewise, among those who try to lose weight permanently, only a few succeed. But with practice, discipline, and dedication, those few can include you.


One of the primary ways you will lose weight permanently is by consciously disconnecting food and its associations from all forms of abuse that may have occurred in your life. As you read this, you may say, “I’ve never been abused sexually, physically, or emotionally, so this doesn’t apply to me.” You may be right, or you may be engaging in some form of denial. That is for you to discover as we go along.

Or you may say, “There really may be something to this idea that past experiences keep me going to food for comfort, and I’m willing to take a long look at my past to check out the connection.”

Or you may say, “I know that my eating problems are intricately connected to the deep hurts of my past. I am finally willing to engage in the battle where  it actually exists: in my mind.”

No matter how you respond to this message, you need to know you are not alone in your struggle. At times you may feel as if your picture would be next to the definition of loneliness in the dictionary, but not only do you have friends like me who are on your side; you also have a loving heavenly Father. You may have thought you were doing a solo performance as you engaged in your silent, compulsive behaviors, but guess what? You were not alone then and you are not alone now. Even more important, you are no longer addressing the symptoms of your problem as you’ve done in the past. You are now choosing to deal with the issues that really matter.

SOURCE: Chapter 8, “Eating Problems and Their Link to Abuse,” in Losing Weight Permanently by Gregory L. Jantz, PhD., founder of The Center for Counseling and Health Resources Inc.

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Dr. Gregory Jantz

Pioneering Whole Person Care over thirty years ago, Dr. Gregory Jantz is an innovator in the treatment of mental health. He is a best-selling author of over 45 books, and a go-to media authority on behavioral health afflictions, appearing on CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox, and CNN. Dr. Jantz leads a team of world-class, licensed, and...

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