Hot and Cold

Do you ever feel like you are at either extreme?

Hot or cold
Up or down
In love or out of love
On a diet or eating cupcakes for breakfast

I’ve had these moments in my life.  One of my more recent moments has involved my relationship with my body.  My skin to be more specific.

I have always had sensitive skin. And the cold winters of Pennsylvania have never helped with this issue.

However, forever, my way to counteract a cold house in the winter has been to take a hot shower. But, cold skin in hot water is not a great recipe for healthy skin.

This past week, I had a moment of awareness about my habit and asked myself…

Why would I take a hot shower if my skin is healthier when I take a cooler one?

My answer: The hot water makes me feel good.

A little coaching tip: when you think an inanimate object is making you feel anything, it is definitely time to take a look at your thinking. Scales, cupcakes, or in my case, hot showers don’t create a feeling for you, the thoughts you choose do.

I corrected myself: No, the thoughts I choose tell me how to feel.

What thought was I choosing then that dissuaded me to take the action of ignoring what was healthy for my body?

It was: Hot water is a quick and easy solution to my chilly woes.
Which created a feeling of urgency as well as a disconnection from my body…
where I jump in the hot shower and ignore my dry skin. Until I can’t…

Which is where I was at this week.  Itchy. Dry. Skin.

Usually, at this point, I would have changed my behavior and moved to the cool end of the shower spectrum, but the thought would have been:

I have to change my behavior to feel better.

This type of backwards thought cons us into believing that losing weight, changing jobs, and leaving boyfriends is what will make us feel better. And when these actions don’t make us feel better, we put the weight back on, find a different job only to be struggling again, or date the same type of guy.

Because, we haven’t changed our thinking, first.  Thoughts create better feelings not changes in behavior.

Now that I was aware of my thoughts, I wanted to change to change them. And in turn change my behavior. For good.

I didn’t want to go from hot to cold and then back to hot.  This time I wanted to connect with my body and find a middle ground.  Here is the thought I chose:

I want to take care of my body.
I feel love.
I take cooler, warm showers.
I connect with my body and treat it well. Long term.

So, when you, notice yourself bouncing back and forth and trying to change your behavior to feel better, to no avail…

this can be a good time to take a moment and ask yourself, what am I thinking?

Life doesn’t have to be a series of hot and cold. Ups and downs. Ins and outs.

We can decide with our thinking, that sitting in the middle, at a place of peace and love, can be much better than a quick, temporary change in our behavior.

Where are your habits hot and cold? Can you choose a thought that brings you to a more peaceful center?

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