I began to stop eating sweets as part of Lent and My Happiness Project, but I ran into a problem: though the decrease in my sugar intake was benefitting my health, my happiness levels weren’t impacted as positively as I thought.
I had this post almost ready to go last Thursday, but I just couldn’t finish it for some reason. The past few years I’ve given up sweets for lent, and I thought I’d try it again. However, it just doesn’t seem to be working this time. Sure, it’s completely dependent on self-discipline, but this lent is focused on My Happiness Project, and when I looked at how abstaining from sweets was affecting my happiness, I ran into a problem. Every time I went into a dining hall, I felt that craving and desire for a sweet. I know that’s not good, but the “forbidden food” mindset was making me unhappy. I shouldn’t be addicted or controlled by my sugar craving, but self-deprivation wasn’t working.
When I began college, I started focusing more on my health and what I ate, almost too much so. At times, I overly obsessed about what I could and couldn’t eat, a disorder I recently discovered is called orthorexia. I’d quickly realize the food obsession wasn’t healthy and stop, but subconsciously I started doing it again for lent. And eventually, going cold-turkey on sweets led me to binge-eat the very thing I was trying to avoid (in the form of a whole box of girl scout cookies).
Some things I have cut out (such as my daily packet of Peanut M&Ms), and that has made me happier and feel better about myself. So, I’m not really sure what to do right now. I am trying to cut down on my sugar intake to help my body get healthier and to prevent/quit my addiction. I’m just not sure the quantity of how much I’m giving up. Do I focus on happiness or what’s best for me physically?