When I explore the source of emotional eating with clients, one of the common themes that come up is reward. Eating is a reward for a good day, a bad day, a hard day, or a hard life. It seems many people feel the need for a reward/treat/pick-me-up at the end of the day.
I agree. If you feel you deserve something special you should have it. There’s one caveat. If you’re concerned about weight management and/or your health you need to find a reward that doesn’t go in your mouth.
In all likelihood you’ve given your treat of choice special status. It has magic in it. In truth, it’s not special or magic until you make it so. It’s just food.
The word treat is loaded – often associated with sweet things to eat, probably stemming from childhood where well-meaning parents, teachers and sports coaches used food as both motivator and reward. If that’s your history it might be best to drop that word, and that behaviour.
The strategy I’m suggesting here is finding other sources of reward that provide comfort and joy that don’t involve consumption. It’s different for everyone. For example, a hot bath is probably the last thing I would do. (I’d have to clean the tub first.) For others it’s an indulgent delight.
Comfort. Indulgence. Pleasure. What comes up for you? Ideally, we’re looking for something as enticing as your favorite food. Cleaning the kitchen drawer likely won’t cut it. It might be something like: reading, taking a walk, writing, playing cards or other games, meditation, creative pursuits. Maybe it’s something you’ve always wanted to do and haven’t given yourself permission to do it yet – like coloring. Keep it simple.
If you’re thinking that food is your only comfort or pleasure it’s time to take a good look at your life. There is so much more for you and food shouldn’t serve that purpose. Food should be pleasurable, yes, but not be a replacement for a pleasurable life.
The bottom line? Dig deep to understand why you’re really eating. There’s likely more than one reason. Meet the need(s) directly. It could be small steps as mentioned above, or it could be about addressing major stressors in your life. Please get the support you need.
August is International EFT Tapping Month. EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Techniques. It involves tapping on acupressure points. Learn more on this site under EFT.
To support you, and spread the word on the amazing capacity of EFT, I’m offering a half-hour coaching session, without charge, up until August 30, 2019. Let me demonstrate how to deal with your cravings and emotional eating energetically. It’s cutting edge. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org