Posts Tagged ‘eat to fix discomfort’

Stop Running From Discomfort

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

Mother_DaughterXSmall-300x199Recently I found myself in an old familiar setting.

One of my teenage daughters had come home from school in a mood. Let’s just say, it was one of those teenage moods.

I was in the kitchen with her, and suddenly realized that I was mindlessly snacking.

I did a quick check-in with myself.

No hunger.

And I realized that just like that I had slipped into an old pattern… I started to feel uncomfortable and immediately started eating to remedy the discomfort.

Although most of that behavior is gone for me, it still occasionally rears its head.

And it’s good to notice that even after doing lots of work, sometimes you react with old patterns.

So here’s the story:

When you begin to feel uncomfortable, about anything you’re thinking about, notice the feeling coming over you.

Pause.

And then welcome the discomfort.

It’s here to teach you something.

To give you the inside path to your thoughts.

And only after you allow yourself to feel the feeling, can you go inside and work on it. Change it. Or not.

But first you have to feel it.

Then you can figure out what’s going on.

If you eat you will smother the feeling, and lose touch with the thought.

So grab the opportunity.

Stop running from discomfort.

How Stress-Eating Makes Your Stress Worse

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

Stress reliefHave you ever eaten something with no hunger, strictly for the purpose of feeling better?

I have.

And I’ll bet you have too.

Clients tell me all the time that they are stress eaters.

This all-encompassing term includes any eating you do to relieve an uncomfortable feeling.

This feeling could be anything.

  • Shame.
  • Anger.
  • Fear.
  • Loneliness.
  • Worry.

Rarely to never is it feelings of peace, joy or satisfaction.

Often, my clients, who are frustrated about their extra weight, eat to overcome the bad feelings they have about their bodies, their ‘failure’, their inability to get themselves to do what’s good for them.

So, we eat to get rid of uncomfortable feelings.

But, wait a minute!

To me, it looks like we’re soothing our pain using the very thing that causes us pain in the first place.

And this eating adds more pounds of pain, giving you more uncomfortable feelings.

What??

Soothing ourselves with food, when we’re trying to lose weight, is like rubbing salt into a wound.

It makes it worse.

It makes it hurt more.

And it won’t get rid of what caused the wound in the first place.

So, what can you do instead?

First, catch yourself next time you reach for food to soothe an uncomfortable feeling.

Pause.

And ask if this will help or compound your discomfort.

Then choose something else to do.

Don’t eat.

Allow the feeling to bubble up and wash over you.

It will pass.

Now you can decide what to do about it.

I encourage my clients to have a list ready of things they can do to soothe themselves.

Some take only a few minutes.

Some take more time.

Some are solo activities.

Some involve other people.

Have your own personal list ready.

There’s no limit to the ideas you can come up with that can give you relief.

And here’s one more tip: how do you get yourself to pause and go look at your list?

Do a preview.

Start regularly mentally practicing coming up against your stress, and not reaching for food, but for your soothing list. Do it often enough and it will become your new behavior.

But you need to stop using the thing that causes pain to relieve your pain.