If you’ve ever felt disappointed by the amount of pleasure you experienced while eating then you’ve experienced pleasure scarcity. This concept is all about you thinking you’re not getting enough pleasure and most likely it’s more pleasure from food that you’re wanting.
In the episode, I’m breaking down what pleasure scarcity means, why you experience it, and how you can feel more abundant with your pleasure. There is more pleasure to be had than what you’re getting and more that’s not coming from food. Let me help you find it.
Hi! Hello. I hope you’re doing well. Things are good over here. I’m doing a lot of personal work on myself and I’m loving it so much. Seriously you guys, figuring out spots where you could use some work and actually putting in the time and effort to make some changes is so gratifying. Becoming a better version of myself is the funnest!
So I hope you’re also making time to work on yourself. You’re listening to this so I can assume you are but remember, it’s not just listening that counts as work, it’s also making time to apply. That’s where the real magic happens.
Okay, let’s get into today’s topic.
Few months ago, one of my clients and I were talking about pleasure and I told her she has pleasure scarcity. When I told her that she told me she felt a little bit of relief because there was a term for it. I then confessed that I had actually just made it up right then and there. But it was so fitting for what she was going through and I’m so excited to share this concept with you all.
How I define pleasure scarcity is when you think there hasn’t been enough pleasure, there won’t be enough, or there won’t be any more. Basically, you’re thinking that once this pleasure from the food is gone, there won’t be anymore or that pleasure you got from eating the food wasn’t enough. You may even be aware that there is more coming at some point, like if this this is your last time eating that day so it’s coming tomorrow, but you’re thinking it’s too far away. Once the food is gone, there’s no more pleasure and it’s just bleak. It’s all downhill from there.
This happens often with joy foods and foods you tell yourself you’re not going to eat again for awhile or ever again. You start feeling disappointed that this is it. So you get in all you can now while you are allowing yourself to eat that food or while it’s still available.
What was happening with my client was that she was eating really fast because she wanted to get as much pleasure as possible before she felt too full. She wanted to prolong the pleasure. She wasn’t okay with getting only a little bit of pleasure from that food, she wanted a lot. She wanted more.
What might be happening to you is that you’re overeating or bingeing on joy foods because like I mentioned a minute ago, you’re making that food scarce in your life and in your mind or, you’re wanting to continue eating once your meal is done because the pleasure you got wasn’t enough.
You can squeeze in more food to extend the pleasure you’re experiencing now and then feel way too full and have all the consequences of overeating or bingeing that happen for you, or you can be happy with the pleasure you got, let this pleasure go, feel okay and not have the consequences.
If you’re choosing to get more pleasure and going against your true wants and aren’t caring about the negative consequences, you probably have some reasons why you’re choosing that and one of the things might be that you’re thinking there isn’t more coming soon enough.
Why are you thinking that?
I can think of a two main reasons why you might be.
First, you’re telling yourself that you can’t have whatever food you’re eating either for a long time or ever again. You’re never going to eat that food again, that food is off limits, you can’t trust yourself around it so you’re not going to allow it, all these kinds of thoughts. If this is a food you really like, then you’re going to try and eat as much of it as you can so you can get as much pleasure from it while you still can. You’re fearing missing out on it so you’re going to pack it all in, as much as you can.
You are making this food scarce in your life and this isn’t something you really want to be doing. Because the truth is, it’s not scarce. Most likely you can go to the store and buy it again tomorrow. It’s there. But in your mind, you’re making it scarce by telling yourself you can’t have it again for however long.
You’re creating lack of that food in your life and your response to that which you’re creating is to eat an abundance of it now while you are allowing it in your life.
Second, you’re not giving yourself something else that’s pleasurable to look forward to.
If eating and food is the only pleasure in your life, then when you finish eating, that’s it. No more pleasure until the next time you eat. And if this is happening early in the evening, then what do you have to look forward to for the rest of the night? Does this mean the rest of the night is going to be unfulfilling and boring?
It will be if you think that food is all you’ve got to do and that food is the only thing that will cure your boredom and fulfill you.
When food and eating is the most pleasurable thing in your life, it’s really hard to spend less time doing it.
We all deserve to have pleasure and joy in our lives. But do we deserve to get it from something that will ultimately cause us to feel sick, regretful, guilty, and ashamed?
No, no way.
So if you want to get away from pleasure scarcity in your life, these two things need to be addressed.
So first, stop telling yourself that you can’t ever have the foods you love ever again. There is a time and a place for them. Make room for them in your life. Build trust in yourself around them by continuing to have them in your life from time to time. If you just keep avoiding them and fearing them because you think they’re going to trigger a binge then you’ll never learn to be around them without feeling terrified.
However, it’s your choice whether you want to do this work right now and if you choose to not have those foods in your life, and you don’t feel ready to work on being around them, still stop telling yourself you can’t have them or that they’re off limits. You can have them, they’re available to you, and if you don’t eat them make sure you’re clear with yourself that it’s because you are choosing not to.
If you can calm yourself down about the availability of this food, then you won’t feel such a desperation to get it while you can. It will be there when you choose to eat it again. Make that choice now even. Decide now when you’re going to have it agin so you don’t have to wonder if you’ll ever get it again. If you really like it, and you want it in your life, make a plan to have it again in a week, in a month, in 3 months, whatever you want.
And second, have more to look forward to. Maybe you already do, you’re just not focusing on it. One of my clients and I talked about this recently and after telling me that eating is all she has to look forward to, I challenged that and she ended up telling me about all the other things in her life that she enjoys and can look forward to. We block ourselves by thinking there is nothing else. We block ourselves from seeing what we do have and we block ourselves from creating more.
Now, maybe you don’t have things to look forward to. Maybe eating really is the only exciting, pleasurable, fun thing in your life. Again, stop thinking about how this is all you have. Then answer these questions.
What is something you’d want to do with your free time? What is something you used to do that you don’t do anymore? Who would you like to see or talk with more? What have you always wanted to do that you haven’t done?
These questions are so much more useful than just thinking food is it. It’s not. This world is full of amazing things to do and to experience. You are full of ideas, you just haven’t accessed them yet because you haven’t been open to finding them.
You can be satisfied with the pleasure you’ve received if you believe there will be more coming.
You can make pleasure more abundant in your life if you stop holding yourself back from getting it.
Allow yourself to have what you want and create fun and excitement in your life. They’re always available for you if you look for them.
This food you’re eating isn’t all there is. There’s more. There’s more of that food for you in the future and there’s more pleasure from things besides food for you in the future.
Allow this pleasure you’re experiencing to go. Appreciate it and believe there will be more. And there will be more because you’re going to create it.
Now you go create the most pleasure filled week that’s not mostly revolved around pleasure from food. Bye bye.