Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Obsession vs. Passion

I'm reading a new book called Shrink Yourself. It falls in line with the Intuitive Eating type of thinking, but really I think anyone wanting to lose weight would benefit from it. It's all about learning how to be free from emotional eating. First he teaches you the principals, then the last part is actually going through sessions to get to the heart of things. 

One of the things he talks about is finding what you have a passion for. This got me thinking and trying to figure out what I have passion for. I'm not talking about the obvious things - God, family, and such. I DEFINITELY have passion for those things and they bring much joy to my life. I'm talking more about passion that will help me overcome my overeating. Hobbies, things that you want to do instead of eat when things get tough.

If I really think about it, I've only really had passion for a few things. Boys, friends, reading, camping, stamping (for a while), and.... food. And really - food and my weight have been the one constant in all the years. I can look back at old journals and can probably count on one hand the entries that don't speak about weight. But then I start thinking about it and realized that I don't have a passion for my weight - I have an obsession. I started wondering, what's the difference? 

The actual definitions: 

Obsession: The domination of one's thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image, or desire, etc.
Passion: A strong affection or enthusiasm for an object, concept, etc. 

I realize that I have had an obsession for weight loss for years, but what I really want, is a passion for living a healthy life - and making our home a place where Mike and some day our children - can also live healthy lives. 

The question really becomes, how do you know you have passion - not obsession. And does it really matter?

I have some thoughts on this, but I want to know what you think. What are your thoughts on obsession vs. passion. Is one more useful then the other? Do you think obsession is a negative thing? If so - how do you over come it in your journey? Or do you use it as a catalyst to make something happen? Tell me your thoughts!


Ex Yo-Yo Dieter Debbie said...

A fine line between the two, that's for sure!

I figure if I'm enjoying it, it makes my life richer and more fulfilling, then it's a passion. If I think about it a lot, whether I want to or not, driven by desperation rather than enjoyment, it would be obsession.

Someone hinted on my blog yesterday that I might be a tad obsessed with weighing myself (since it's a daily thing). However, I'd say it's more of a motivational tool to keep myself on track (like how a lot of people write down everything they eat) rather than an obsession.

Have a look at my post and tell me what you think! :)

~Karen C.L. Anderson~ said...

I am new to your blog and have been reading...GREAT stuff and I can relate to pretty much all of it! I know, for me, finding a passion that really filled me up, excited me and lit my fire was a key component to having a health(ier) relationship with food and my body. It took me a good long time to figure it all out, but it's okay and I am glad that I of my mantras now is, "it takes as long as it needs to take, and that's okay." :-)

Becky said...

To me, an obsession seems unhealthy and typically involves something unattainable. Passion is the way to go--it is healthy and usually reciprocated.

I'm obsessed with food, but I have a passion for being active. I need to get rid of my obsession!!

Mom to the Fourth Power said...

I think of obsession as almost something out of control thus is does tend to be unhealthy. I see passion as something that drives you but doesn't overpower you like an obsession can. Maybe passion is like a controlled positive obsession. I would rather be looked at as having passion than being obsessed! :)


A Journey to a new me... said...

There's definately a fine line between the two (IMO)...I have obsessive tendencies and not just with food or weight. I think that being obsessive about things isn't all negative but you definately need to be aware of the triggers that send you "way over the edge" to a place that leaves you feeling "unbalanced".