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Dr. Robin Smith strikes most people as a woman who has it all together.
A noted TV personality and author of several books, including “Lies At The Altar – The Truth About Great Marriages” and “Inspirational Vitamins, A Guide To Personal Empowerment,” is best known for dispensing advice, not taking it.
But the psychologist, seminarian and motivational speaker had a secret she kept from the public. Contrary to all appearances that she had the perfect life, Smith felt empty and hungered for a better life.
In her new book, “Hungry – The Truth about Being Full,” Smith recounts a period in her life when she was overwhelmed by living up to others’ expectations and not finding fulfillment for herself.
In a recent interview, Smith said she was suffering from “emotional, spiritual and relational malnourishment.”
“Even though I looked alive and vital, the hourglass measuring the aliveness of my soul was swiftly draining to the bottom. I was losing my battle to be myself. I was in my prime. My career was taking off; I was surrounded by loving friends and family. Yet it felt like time was running out,” she writes in the book.
Smith said she wrote the book, using herself as an example, to show people how to find their true selves under all the layers of doubt, superficiality and life crises that keep them from fulfilling their dreams.
“This information can be used to build a healthy, rich and satisfying life.”
In an interview with Oprah.com about “Lies at the Altar,” Smith said it is not uncommon to find comfort in food when we have the blues, a down day, or a need to protect ourselves from bigger hurts.
But when the struggle is with food or relationships or money, the real culprit may be that we haven’t addressed our emotional hunger.
Many people find themselves in financial debt, for example, or struggling with overeating because they believe things or food will satisfy their hunger for approval.
She said it is important to learn how to control the emotions that lead to the bad habits; learn how to express concerns and fears in healthy ways; consult with a professional, whether it’s a money manager or a health professional, to get advice on coping mechanisms, and don’t expect an immediate fix. It takes time to change a habit, just as it took time to develop the behavior in the first place.
It is important, Smith said, that you understand what you are truly hungry for, not what you say you hungry for. Once you gain that clarity, you can find your way to satisfaction.
In writing “Hungry,” Smith said, she learned to take her own advice.
“I only learned after writing and completing ‘Hungry’ that I had to write this book to save my own life before it could benefit, help and offer healing to the lives of others. It is my heartfelt desire that ‘Hungry’ will empower, transform and liberate those in search of their authentic self and life.”