Emotional Eating

5 tips for how to eat on thanksgiving & not gain a pound

Are you thinking of skipping breakfast on Thanksgiving to save up your calories for all that turkey, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie you know you're going to indulge in because you absolutely don't want to pass any of it up AND you also don't want to to gain even one pound?

What if we tell you that your plan will likely backfire? That if you don't eat all morning or only eat a piece of toast with your coffee you're going to not only eat more but you likely will put on a pound or two (or more) in just that one day. 

stress and your cravings: true causes for your cravings part 4

We're on to the final part of this 4-part series on the True Causes of Cravings. Are you starting to see that your cravings are not a weakness on your part at all? They are loving messages from your body and spirit on how it desires to be nourished. Plain and simple. Isn't that beautiful? Today in part 4, we're talking about the juicy and scandalous topic of emotional reasons for your cravings. (In case you haven't read them, here's part 1part 2 and part 3 of this 4-part series!)

sugar have you hooked? true causes of your cravings part 2

Hopefully after reading Part 1 of our 4-part series on the True Causes of your Cravings, you have a better understanding of the nutritional causes for your cravings AND that a lack of willpower is NOT the issue. You are not 'bad', broken or to blame when it comes to your cravings.

no willpower? no problem! true causes of your cravings part 1

Cravings often feel frustrating, compulsive and out of control. Like you have no willpower and you and everyone you love is paying the price. Like so many women, you probably are desperately wanting it to be different for yourself but nothing seems to help and you have no idea how to get rid of these cravings and the control they have over you. You might even feel hopeless or frustrated, possibly defeated or ashamed.

They Say a Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

This is me. 20 years old. Profoundly depressed, completely malnourished, unbelievably underweight, and experiencing the most intense battle of my life with food, mind and body. I was riding the downward spiral of guilt, shame, deprivation, obsession and starvation. I put on a "happy" face and protected this corner of my life from everyone. I didn't talk to anyone about it. When people asked how I was doing, my response was always "I am doing fine...how are YOU?" focusing on others while turning a deaf ear to the blaring chaos in my own internal world. Inside, I hardly recognized myself. Starving myself was "eating away" at my truest nature: playful, vibrant, silly, feisty, social, intuitive. I became withdrawn, obsessive, overwhelmed, rigid and reclusive.

 

My Eating Trance: Mindless Eating and What You Can Do about It

Have you ever had that experience where you pull into your driveway and all of the sudden you think, ‘how’d I even get here?!’ You know that driving trance, right? You remember leaving work or the store or church or wherever and then you’re home but you don’t even remember the drive?

Sometimes it’s like that with eating for me. I go into an eating trance. I remember the first bite and suddenly the bowl or the plate or the package is empty and I don’t remember how it got that way. There’s no way I ate that whole chocolate bar or that bag of corn chips.

It just happened to me the other night. I was at a party and there was a big plate of cheese. I wasn’t even going to eat any of it but then I decided to have a couple of pieces. When I looked down at the serving plate just a few minutes later I saw that half of the cheese was missing. Like 15 or more pieces of cheese. I looked around and my cheese-lovin’ boys were nowhere to be seen. In fact all the other guests were in the other room watching a basketball game. And I couldn’t even blame it on the dog because she was too little to jump up on that table to get to that plate of cheese.

Total. Eating. Trance.

I can easily drop into this trance with chocolate. My husband likes to hide my favorite dark chocolate bars in his sock drawer for me. It’s not like the kids don’t know they’re there but they do know that they better not touch them or Dad is going to be really unhappy with them. I can open that drawer, telling myself I’m just going to have one (or maybe two) squares from that brand new bar. I enjoy it while looking out the window, watching some birds flitter around or a chipmunk scurry by and then when I go to close the drawer, I see an empty wrapper amidst the socks.The whole bar gone.

I’m thinking you might be able to relate. I know from coaching many women over the last 12 years that going into an eating trance is pretty common.  Unfortunately so are the follow-up feelings that might just lead you into saying not-so-nice things to yourself, like:

  • “I’m such a loser.”
  • “I always fail at eating healthy.”
  • “I have no willpower at all. Why even try?!”
  • “There goes my diet, again. I stink.”
  • “I’ll never get this eating thing right.”
  • “I hate my body. I hate myself.”

Of course none of this mean self-talk works at all to help us get what we really want, which is a healthier relationship with food and eating.

So, what does work? What helps you go into those eating trances way less frequently and emotionally bounce back way more quickly when you do?

Being Kind and Showing Up.

Not quite the quick and sexy fix-me-now solution you might have been hoping for but much more lasting if you practice it.

First, be kind to yourself. You are amazing. (let that compliment 'land' please - no deflecting). I may not even know you, yet I know you are a woman who is so much more than what you perceive as a failure when it comes to your relationship to food and your body. You’ve got a lot going on in your inner and outer life. You take care of other people, maybe a lot of other people. You spread a lot of good in the world. Have some compassion for the fact that your relationship with food and eating is a bit messy at times. It’s okay.

Along with being kind to yourself, showing up helps a lot. Being intentionally present when you eat. Noticing the colors and the shapes and the smell. Paying attention to the textures. Slowing down and really chewing. You’ll be amazed that if you practice this ‘showing up’ when you eat instead of allowing yourself to go into an eating trance, you’ll experience more fully the feeling you’re wanting to feel or you’ll realize that whatever you’re eating isn’t really helping you feel it at all; it’s just stopping you from feeling a feeling that you’re avoiding. That’s a good awareness to have.

Remember being kind and showing up in your relationship to eating is a practice. I’ve been practicing them for over a decade and I still eat mindlessly at times and talk not-so-nicely to myself afterwards. It’s way less frequently than it was before though and I’m much more open to asking myself, “What’s this mindless eating really about for you right now, darlin’?”

So I’ve got two invitations for you:

Be kind and show up.

We'd love to hear about one (or more) of your eating trances over on our Facebook page. What did you mindlessly devour and what were you thinking afterwards? 

xo,

 

 

 

P.S. We have a really fun Summer (Self) Loving Give-Away Challenge starting July 11th and you'll have the opportunity to win lots of great prizes and as long as you are on our mailing list you'll get all the details!