When I discuss nutrition and eating habits with my clients, we often touch on the subject of emotional eating. I get asked if I eat when I’m upset or angry. The answer is no. So how do I do it?
To make a change you must first become aware of the problem. If you are aware of it, you’re in control of it. And don’t start shaking your head and telling me: “it’s not that easy.” Yes it is. If you don’t like to admit it then you’re not willing to accept responsibility for your actions yet and are in denial. But where’s a will, there’s a way. 😊
We as humans like everything to have an explanation just so we could cope better. It’s so easy to blame something or someone else. “My partner broke up with me, it’s their fault I’m eating cake and ice cream.” No it’s not. They obviously made a big mistake by leaving you – because you’re wonderful ❤️ – but in no way can you blame someone else for the foods you choose to eat.
By accepting the way you’re feeling and deciding to NOT eat all the food as a punishment to yourself, you’re taking control. I don’t eat when I’m upset or angry because hunger wasn’t my problem. The problem was a situation between me and another person and how I dealt with it. If I then reach for comfort or junk foods I am only adding to my problems and then I would have to deal with my emotions AND weight gain. After the unpleasant ordeal that has already upset me, I am punishing myself further by doing myself a disservice.
There are, however, ways to cope better with stressful/angering/upsetting situations.
Step 1. Become aware of what is bothering you – the problem. Write it down.
Step 2. Write down how it’s making you feel – the emotion.
Step 3. Write down what negative action it’s trying to bring out in you – irrational behaviour/craving/loss of appetite.
Step 4. Write down 3 positive reactions to the negative action – solutions.
My favourite ways to cope with unwanted emotions in the past have been:
🔸taking a long walk and leaving my phone at home;
🔸watching a movie/going to the theatre (yes, you can do those alone as well);
🔸calling a friend or scheduling a coffee date with them;
🔸treating yourself to something that you’ve always wanted or needed;
🔸You can even go as far as going on your dream holiday like I did last year. 😉 Trust me, it worked. You’ll feel better as soon as you’ve paid the money. 😂
If you have a really great idea to share on how to deal with emotions better to avoid emotional eating, perhaps you will share that with others? 🙂 It might help someone and they’ll never forget it!