Ask Geneen Roth: How to Trust Your Body
I'm amazed at my body's ability to adapt and survive. Trust is my issue. How do I regain my trust in a body that betrayed me? I am proud to be a 14-year survivor of leukemia. At 23, I was stripped of all weight, hair, movement and freedom. With the help of a superhuman team of doctors and nurses, my miraculous body found the strength to survive. All these years later, I still worry that my body will betray me again. I am aware that fear now causes me to keep an insulation around myself. I have not found a way to overcome that fear. I will never be 22 and invincible again, but I want to feel like I am. I am hopeful that Geneen Roth's book will offer me some insight.
— Patricia C., Meriden, Connecticut
I know you believe that your body betrayed you, but that's not how I see it. Your body got sick. Very sick. And you had to fight to be healthy again, and with the team of professionals you gathered, you did and you are. Your body is the vehicle for your spirit and your soul. It is the piece of the universe you've been given to tend, to care, to cherish. Without it, you couldn't sense or taste or touch or feel. If it got sick, then something was amiss that needed to be corrected so that it and you could be healthy. You've done that work. Now is the time for you to be in relationship with your body, to treat it kindly, for what it is. How can you be in a kind and tender relationship with it? How could you eat that would allow it and you to feel cherished? What would lavishing love on your body look like? Those are the questions to ask, to ponder, to live into.
Next: How do you overcome your food obsessions from the past?
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Geneen Roth's books were among the first to link compulsive eating and perpetual dieting with deeply personal and spiritual issues that go far beyond food, weight and body image. She believes that we eat the way we live and that our relationships to food, money and love are exact reflections of our deeply held beliefs about ourselves and the amount of joy, abundance, pain and scarcity we believe we have (or are allowed) to have in our lives.
Geneen has appeared on many national television shows, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, 20/20, The NBC Nightly News, The View and Good Morning America. Articles about Roth and her work have appeared in numerous publications, including O, The Oprah Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Time, Elle, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune and The Philadelphia Inquirer. She has written a monthly column in Good Housekeeping magazine since 2007. Roth is the author of eight books, including The New York Times best-seller When Food Is Love and a memoir about love and loss, The Craggy Hole in My Heart. Women, Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything is her newest book.
Read More from Geneen Roth:
How to stop listening to that voice inside your head
Why getting your life back is a step-by-step process
Make peace with your body