The BRAVE Interview #3 October 2016: Sheila Brownlow

Here is #3 in The BRAVE Interview series! It’s the Who, What, When, Where, How,  (and sometimes Why) of YOUR ‘one brave thing’! November’s interview is with Sheila Brownlow!

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WHO AM I?  Sheila Brownlow

MY ONE BRAVE THING—when, where, with whom:  I have stopped discussing eating, how upset I am at my eating, how much I weigh, whether I am peeved at myself for overeating, how awful I am for not weighing 110 lbs., whined about how I can’t eat like a normal person anymore at age 55, or otherwise wasting time – precious time – talking with my friends, so many good friends….about eating and weight.  Not in person, not online.  For one month. 

WHY DO I THINK THIS IS BRAVE?  I’m at this age/stage of my life where I’ve felt compelled to start every interaction with a justification of how I look and why I don’t look like a 30-year old anymore. It’s not ok to essentially apologizing for myself to start every interaction.  To me it’s brave because I have completely shifted my lens on the world.

WHY:  Because I waste so much time and energy where I could be helping others, learning things, doing things, having meaningful conversations, being supportive, just being in the moment…with all this constant food and weight talk I am taking away from the productive possibilities of my life and my friends’ lives. 

So how do I feel about this?  Well, I miss commiserating, and I’m still working on not “leading” with that foot in every conversation (“let’s talk about food, eating, how much, when, regrets…again?”).  I think I am listening better rather than just winding up to say how upset I am about this that or the other weight thing. 

Can I continue?  I don’t know.  Maybe if we all spent a month on something other than our food and body appearance we could make a lot of changes in the world.

Thank you so much, Sheila!

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