How to overcome emotional eating

How to overcome emotional eating

Overcoming emotional eating is hard. When you try to stop it, all the reasons why you’re eating emotionally come to the surface.

This can be an overwhelming cascade of feelings and in order to stop emotional eating, we have to learn how to process these feelings.

As emotional eaters, we don’t yet know how to process these feelings. Because up until now we have been –
· Running from them (ever felt triggered and found yourself in the fridge or pantry?)
· Avoiding them (I can’t possibly deal with that right now, please pass the chocolate)
· Reacting to them (ever found yourself crying into an empty tub of ice cream, anyone? Or is that just me?)
· Eating through them – using food to stuff down our feelings (have you ever eaten so much, and felt so uncomfortable in your body and guilty at yourself for eating, that you forgot what triggered you in the first place?)

We do all of these things to avoid our feelings, instead of experiencing them.

Then when we decide to make a change we tend to go on some restrictive diet or start some excessive exercise routine in an attempt to punish ourselves thin – when what we need to do is find a way to accept the body that we’re in right now.

 

Yes, you read that right. You need to accept the body that you’re in, while creating the body that you truly desire.

 

As Sophia Bush once said so eloquently – “You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and a work in progress simultaneously.” Many of us can find this really challenging when it comes to body acceptance, because why would you ever want to accept something that you don’t want?

Wouldn’t accepting my body as it is now mean I would lose my drive to change?

I am truly not meaning to sound rude or insensitive when I ask this, but there is no other way to put it, so it’s with love that I ask – how was that been working out for you?
How have the restrictive diets, the deprivation, the gruelling exercise regimens worked out for you?

The problem is… you can’t shame or hate yourself thin and maintain that permanently.

But, when you learn how to actively accept the body that you’re in now and understand that there’s a reason why you weigh what you weigh, and that you are in control of how much you eat, then you have the control and the power to create the body that you truly want.

Now, the only way that I have found to reduce emotional eating is to increase consciousness and awareness.
{Important note – Notice I said reduce emotional eating, not fix it. You don’t need to fix it for two very important reasons…

Firstly, you’re not broken, you don’t need to be “fixed”.

Secondly, emotional eating when managed, can be a great signal that something is amiss in your life. Take me – at the time of writing this, I have been indulging in quite a bit of emotional eating of late, and it’s been a red flag to me that I need to focus more on self care.}

 

Back to consciousness and awareness –

Most people like to focus on what’s comfortable and what’s easy and by avoiding negative emotions, by avoiding our fears, by avoiding our discomfort, we think that what we’re doing is taking care of ourselves.

But by not becoming aware of what’s going on underneath the surface we’re letting ourselves get into conflict with those ideas. Underneath the surface there’s part of us that doesn’t want to lose weight because we don’t want to be uncomfortable.

Then there’s this part of us that wants to lose weight because we are already physically uncomfortable. And when you have that conflict underneath the surface that you’re not conscious of, you’re constantly fighting against it.

The first step is to become aware of what you are doing and how it is serving you.
Because if it wasn’t serving you, then you wouldn’t do it.

SO HOW DO WE START DOING THAT?

The best way I have found to uncover what is truly going on in my mind is asking the right questions – we are hardwired to answer questions, it’s the way our brains work.

I journal my answers (old school pen and paper style), or alternatively you could use a computer, or a voice recorder.

Here are some questions to ask yourself. I recommend asking the same questions often, at least once per week, and reviewing how your answers change every month or so.

 

QUESTIONS TO OVERCOME EMOTIONAL EATING

1. What is the reason I want to stop emotional eating?

2. Do I believe this reason is compelling enough to keep me from EVER eating emotionally?

3. If I took away emotional eating how would my life be different?

4. How much time would it free up and what might I do with that time?

5. Am I willing to live without the escape that emotional eating provides?

6. Am I willing to feel worse before I feel better?

7. Am I willing to continue even when the results aren’t fast?

8. If I was no longer hungry or desired food, how might that change my identity? Why?

I know answering these questions can be confronting, but when you commit to doing the inner work the results show on the outside!

 

If you would like to find out more about how I can help you overcome emotional eating book a connection call HERE.

health without shame

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