Title: THE WRITING DIET — WRITE YOURSELF RIGHT-SIZE
Author: Julia Cameron
→ Nibble till it’s gone
Spit it out
Coincidentally, yesterday I read a profile of Julia Cameron in the July/August 2011 edition of Writer’s Digest. There’s no link to the article — it’s like they want you to subscribe or something! — but it’s pretty interesting. She’s led a wild life.
Julia Cameron has written 25 books, both fiction and non-fiction. One of her best-sellers is The Artist’s Way, which is also the basis of courses she teaches, helping students find their creativity.
As she was teaching over the years, she saw her students not only transform their creative brains, but she saw them transform their bodies and lifestyles as well.
The Writing Diet explains that process. She provides several tools — “Morning Pages,” journaling, asking yourself four questions to distract you from your cravings, going on culinary adventures, and something as simple as taking walks, among many other exercises.
I didn’t think I’d find much of interest in this book because not only do I tap my creativity constantly, I’m not one for writing exercises and assignments. But I read the whole thing fairly quickly, enjoying it immensely. While I didn’t do any of the exercises, per se, many of them did make me stop and think.
She talks about “eating clean” which is the same thing I’m trying to do. She said, “The healthiest way to view our relationship to food is to see it in terms of progress, not perfection. Now we are eating more healthfully, if not perfectly. This is progress, and it is progress with which we must learn to be satisfied.”
My favorite image from the book was a woman she quoted. “I have to take my overeating one day at a time,” says Eleanor. “I feel like I have my finger in the dyke. I can’t keep it there forever, but I can keep it there just for a day.”
I like that. In fact, there was a lot of similar talk about 12-step programs. Another of her students said he thought it was easier to be an alcoholic because alcoholics can stay away from liquor but everyone needs to eat.
If you can eat right for one day, maybe you can get up and do it again tomorrow. Pretty soon, you may find you’ve been doing it for years.
Lots of excellent, practical advice.
If you haven’t tried journaling before and seem to have some issues with food or healthy living, then you might benefit from reading The Writing Diet and doing the tasks Cameron lays out for each chapter.
What have you got to lose … besides weight, that is?
Have you tried journaling? Did it work for you? Have you ever dumped a bad habit or incorporated a good one? How did you do it?