Chicken salad. I woke up thinking about chicken salad.
Now, I love chicken salad. Always have. I don’t know but when the cravings hit, usually, while everybody else wants Tostitos or chocolate bark, I want chicken salad. Creamy. Full of fatty goodness. Chicken salad.
And you know what? Tonight, I had chicken salad. And I am not going to lie: I had a lot of it. I ate like a football player in preseason. More than anybody should eat at one sitting, really. But I did it. I could not resist the creamy, chunky, cumulus-esque deliciousness. I don’t even remember chewing or taking a breath in between bites … I inhaled it like it was cotton candy and I was a five-year-old at the county fair. Like I’d just been released from a long captivity; which wasn’t that far from the truth, since I’d just wrapped an 800-calorie-a-day-21-day detox and, well, I was hungry.
Starving in fact.
How many times have you been starving? For food. Love. Sex. Sleep. A good cry. A Netflix Binge. New boots. A vacation. A break. What are you doing about it? Are you giving yourself the things you need? Or, are you punishing yourself, thinking you’re weak to even want them. Thinking deprivation is a sign of courage and bravery. Of strength.
I’m here to tell you: Nah. Deprivation is overrated. Let go of it.
Feed yourself, folks. Honestly. Just do it. When I deprive myself for too long—typically of food in but another attempt to fit into my skinny jeans (which frankly, I should just donate already)—I wind up walking around feeling like the Audrey 2 from Little Shop of Horrors. And not in a good way.
While you’re letting go of deprivation, let go of its cousin too: Guilt. Yeah, I ate that chicken salad. So what? No one died. Tomorrow is another day. And sometimes, I just need chicken salad. So I should have it. Let go for it. Which I did.
We all need to do this: Indulge. Sleep late, even when we have “so much to do”. Cry for no reason. Buy the damn boots already.
A few years ago, we went to my brother’s house to celebrate my niece’s birthday with a cake. I didn’t eat the cake, on my never-ending quest to look like a high school cheerleader (shush). Everybody else did – I just drooled watching. Then, on the drive home, a large tree weighed down by too much ice just fell over right in front of us. If we had driven even one mile faster, it would have come right through our windshield. Once we came to a screeching halt, people racing out of their houses to see if we were okay, my husband looked over at me to see if I was still in one piece. I said this: “I should have had the cake.”
People, eat the cake.
What I’m really saying is that sometimes we just need to let go … to take a breath, let down, eat the cake, and have the things we really want.
How? We just do it. It’s about finding a balance and moderation that works uniquely for you. Sometimes that’s matter of trial and error. Other times, it’s about knowing our limits. And still other times, it’s just throwing our heads back into the wind and not worrying about it. Letting the hair we just had done whip around in the cool breezes, and just enjoying life.
What say you? What are you letting go for these days?
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Jill Sherer Murray is an award-winning writer and speaker who studies creativity, relationships and self-growth. She is also the founder of Let Go For It®, a lifestyle brand dedicated to helping individuals let go for a better life. Jill’s TEDx talk as well as her advice column, Big Wild Love: Let Go For It® were created in service to her loyal and growing fan base, who seek support in the act and the art of letting go for the love they desire and deserve. Follow Jill @letgoforit on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.