You’re currently reading Part 2 of a three part series on emotional eating.
Part 1’s here.
If you hold your horses, you’ll have Part 3 in your hot little hands next week.
So, how’d you go observing your hunger habits since last week?
Were you able to identify your body’s physical request for more fuel?
Could you differentiate your physical hunger from your mind’s emotional hunger?
Good on you.
Being able to identify the type of hunger you’re feeling is a huuuuge first step in improving your health, feeling fabulous in those skinny jeans and, igniting your thinner sparkle.
Depending on which hunger you’re feeling, the remedy becomes clear.
If you’re physically hungry, the remedy’s obvious – you eat.
If you’re emotionally hungry, the remedy’s still simple. It’s just not food. How could it be? The hunger’s in your mind, not your tummy.
Magic weight loss pill
I know, I know, you just want the magic weight loss pill, right?
Honey, there isn’t one, OK.
But, the elegant technique you’re about to learn, is magical for dealing with emotional overeating.
It’s from a brilliant book called the The Sedona Method.
The food trance
Why do we eat for emotional reasons?
We get to cover up negative emotions or fill an emotional hole.
It sounds loopy-do but think about it. When we overeat we get to…
Not feel stuff.
A client, who regularly demolished a loaf of fresh bread and butter when she felt stressed, called that food-induced happy place her ‘food trance’.
“It was a place of retreat, free of my responsibilities, free from the voices in my head.”
Step away from the food trance
An emotion is just a feeling.
They can’t actually hurt us.
We just think they can.
On some level, we’re terrified that if we give a negative feeling an inch, it’ll take a mile, we’ll be overwhelmed and drown in our own tears or be swallowed by a dark abyss.
Instead, we push it away, look in the other direction, bolt, hide, anaesthetise.
And remain overweight.
But, ironically, by ignoring or avoiding our emotions we give them power. And, the more we hide from them, the louder they knock.
In fact, many of our negative feelings have only as much substance as a soap bubble. What happens when you poke your finger through a soap bubble? That’s right – it pops.
If you want to eliminate your emotional eating you’ve got to allow emotions to bubble to the surface.
How to ‘pop’ your emotions
You’ll get the most out of this technique if you allow yourself to feel, and see and hear it working rather than by thinking about how it works. Just trust.
1. Allow yourself to be comfortable. Take three deep breaths and allow your focus to move inwards. Your eyes can be open or closed.
2. Focus on the feeling you would like to release. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you’re feeling. Just welcome the feeling and allow it to bubble up to the surface.
Often, when you welcome the feeling – “Gosh, I feel reeeeally alone right now,” the feeling will up and away of its own accord.
3. Ask yourself, “Could I welcome the feeling to just be there?” Either yes or no are both OK answers. You’ll often let go even if you say no. Just go with the first answer that comes up – no need to second guess or over think the merits of either response.
4. Ask yourself, “Am I willing to let this go?” Again, stay away from debate. If the answer is no, ask yourself, “Would I rather have this feeling or be free?” Even if the answer is “no”, go to the next step.
5. Ask yourself this simpler question, “When?” This is an invitation to let it go, now. You may find yourself easily letting go. Remember, the letting go is a decision you can make anytime.
Repeat these steps as you go through your day, whenever guilt, anger, frustration, anxiety, or any heavy emotion comes up.
Ask yourself these questions when you’re en route to the fridge, and as you open the door you’ll realise the desire to eat has upped and awayed along with the emotion you were feeling.
Very quickly, the results will get more and more predictable and you’ll notice how you can let go of anything that drags you down.
Just soap bubbles popping.
As you re-ignite your thinner sparkle.
Love etc, Avril
PS: If you enjoyed this technique, there’s another six in my book Thinner Sparkle.
PPS: Alternatively, if you’ve seen enough to know that you need a little more handholding to get to the other side of emotional eating, there are coaching sessions available. Drop me an email. I’m here to help.