I thought ruminate was just a fancy word for “think” or “ponder.”  Imagine my surprise when the following popped up under definitions:

When people ruminate, they over-think or obsess about situations or life events, such as work or relationships. Research has shown that rumination is associated with a variety of negative consequences, including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, binge-drinking and binge-eating.

chaise-bercante-1293805_640Getting to the highly charged phrase “binge-eating” flung me like Dorothy’s tornado from my main site to this new one, because I am a binge-eater.  But a ruminator?  Something that sounds like a strange creature in a bad sci-fi movie? Besides, no matter what bad habits I’m willing to own up to, I have never considered myself to be an obsessive thinker.  However, in the spirit of my recent commitment to explore honestly what has caused me to become overweight (okay, obese) I have to think about the possibility that there are aspects of my thought processes connected to compulsive eating that I have not identified yet.

While I am not aware of over-thinking or pondering things to the point of obsession, it is clear to me that I engage in behaviors that create a kind of black-out.  Not in the sense of excessive drinking blackouts. But I often find myself engaged in activities that are repetitive and numbing (endlessly playing a video game on my Iphone, for example, long past any sense of enjoyment). Clearly I am not doing any real thinking during that time, but then maybe that is the point. Perhaps binge-eating for me is associated with ruminating in a sort of backwards way. Perhaps it serves as a protection from obsessive thinking.  I’m not sure, but it seems an idea that is worth some serious consideration. Discovering what I may not want to think about, or fear is obsessive and disturbing subject matter may just free me to be less compulsive about food and eating.

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This has nothing to do with the post, but who knew that goats could climb trees?

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4 thoughts on “Am I a Ruminant?

  1. Goats can climb anything.
    I thought ruminate was just ‘to think’ as well, I hadn’t realised it mean overthinking at all. I’m probably guilty over overthinking a fair bit so the word is more apt for me that I realised.

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    1. I knew goats could climb well – up mountainsides and so on, but climbing trees seems like something you need arms for! Thanks for reading and commenting.

      Like

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