Are You An Emotional Eater? Do you find yourself staring into the fridge or pantry and thinking to yourself "what do I feel like?"
If so, this is a good indicator that you were probably turning to food to satisfy an emotional need and weren't really hungry at all. (The key word here is feel!)
People tend to think that emotional eating only happens when we feel bad, but how about those times when you've had some good news, or a good friend pops in for an impromptu visit, often what happens is we turn to food to celebrate. You see, we emotionally eat when we're sad, happy, bored, angry, upset, guilty, and the list goes on.
So how can you overcome this pattern of emotional eating?
Remember, the brain is a pattern matching organ par excellence. It loves to create connections between things. For example, movies and popcorn. These 2 things really don't have anything to do with one another but they have become associated through repetition, what we see other people doing, and well, it's just the way things are! In the same way, we might have a particular emotion (for me it's boredom) and think of food. So these patterns and habits are hard wired into our brains, and unless we become present and consciously stop ourselves and start to break those patterns, we are slaves to the pattern.
Luckily we CAN change our brains and the patterns and programs we run. We CAN create new, healthy patterns that will become unconscious habits and make reaching our goals sooo much easier.
3 Steps to take to break the pattern of emotional eating:
Become the observer - start to observe your mind. Notice what thoughts you have in those moments. Notice what feelings follow those thoughts. Then notice what actions you usually take. Write these down so they are easy to remember, our minds are just too full and busy, get it down on paper.
Look for triggers - what triggers you? Is it when you sit down to watch Netflix? Is it a certain time of day? Is it something in your environment? Is it when you are procrastinating? Whatever your triggers are, make a note of them.
Choose a new response - what would be much more helpful for you to do in those moments that move you towards your goal? How do you want to respond to those triggers? What can you do instead of eating? Now create a mental movie of you choosing that new behaviour, and watch that movie over and over until THAT becomes the new response.
Emotional eating is covered in detail in the 4 week Virtual Gastric Band Program. Or why not try the self paced downloadable version at a fraction of the cost?
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