Forgiveness is the first step to changing your relationship with food and your body permanently.
Forgive yourself for putting your body through all that you’ve put her through up until this point — whether that be bingeing, starving, or calling her fat until she could no longer imagine another way to feel.
Forgive yourself for “not getting it” until now (if now), and for continuing to be human and imperfect in your relationship with food.
Forgive yourself for polishing off whatever bag of food you polished off last night in a state of chaos, confusion, and self-loathing. You were doing the best that you could to take care of yourself in that moment, with the tools that you’ve been taught up until this point.
Forgive yourself and practice new tools, gentle tools, loving tools; knowing that they will take time to master. Like learning a new language, you will forget words, and re-learn them the hard way — by “messing up” and asking for help.
Embrace your “mistakes” as the teachers that they are. When we judge, we miss the lesson.
Many of you think lack of willpower is your problem; that other people are “stronger” than you, and that if you could just muster up the motivation to resist food, you’d finally get your weight problem under control.
If you are truly an emotional eater, that is, if you feel an undeniable urge or pull to eatin non-hunger related situations — guess what? Willpower ain’t gonna do shit for you.
Resisting (verb: to exert force in opposition)
is not a sustainable solution to overcoming emotional needs. Emotional drivers always beat out willpower in the long run.
When you’re uncomfortable in a given situation (whether that discomfort is driven by boredom, anxiety, loneliness, or even excitement), your brain WILL prioritize “dealing with” that discomfort (i.e. numbing out with food), regardless of how badly you want to lose weight.
Soooo what’s the answer you may be thinking?
Well, for starters, DEAL WITH YOUR SHIT. That is, identify and address the underlying emotional driver. If you’re stressed out, do something that relaxes you; if you’re tired, sleep; if you’re angry, talk to someone; if you feel like shit about your body, read this.
A client recently told me she was struggling not to eat over being tired. She had a new job and was running on 4-5 hours of sleep each night, when she really needs 8. She said, “I can’t help it, I just can’t stop eating when I’m tired.”
I asked her if she ever tried sleeping more.
We think that ending emotional eating is about finding ways to “not eat” over things.
but the thing is…
Whether or not you eat a cookie when you’re lonely doesn’t fucking matter — what matters is that you’re lonely.
Can’t have one bite of ice cream without eating the whole pint?
Maybe it’s chips? Peanut Butter? Kentucky Fried Chicken? Feel free to get weird.
And let me tell you a little something about your favorite “addictive” foods.
The only time you will ever feel “out of control” around a specific food, is when you are restricting it.
Somewhere, somehow, you are judging, shaming, or limiting yourself around that food. You are calling it “bad.” You are wishing you didn’t want it. You are worrying you will lose control, gain weight, get caught.
You are handing that food power over you, by fearing it.
If you don’t believe me, try naming one food that “drives you crazy,” that you allow yourself to eat with complete abandon. No shame, no guilt, no fear of losing control. Just letting that food be a part of your life, like it was when you were a kid. Like it’s No. Big. Deal.
I bet you can’t.
The only answer to fear around food, is allowance, more allowance, and deeper still allowance. If you are a veteran of this work, you may not even be conscious of all the ways in which you are still restricting yourself, but let your “lack of control” remind you. Lack of Control = Lack of Allowance = Binge Waiting To Happen.
When did “intuitive eating” become the Hunger & Fullness Diet? Can someone please explain to me why the world has forgotten the “intuition” part of “intuitive eating?”
Because let me tell you, “intuitive eating” does NOT mean “eating when you’re hungry and stopping when you’re full…or else.”
It means using that little voice inside of you, that also reminds you to lock your door before you fall asleep, and not go home with that asshole you met at some bar.
Your intuition is a product of your mind, body and spiritual knowing. It’s a part of your body (hence hunger and fullness play an important role in guiding it), but it’s not ONLY your body.
It’s also informed by logic, environment, as well as something entirely different — something metaphysical; something only you can know in yourself.
It’s the voice that tells you what to order at a restaurant, when you’re not all that hungry, but want to enjoy food and festivities with friends (If you’ve emailed me and asked me what to do when “you’re not hungry” and have set dinner plans, you’re definitely on the Hunger and Fullness Diet, and not eating intuitively).
Bring the “intuition” back into your intuitive eating journey, and your world will change. Not just your food, Your World. Hint: Intuitive eating is practice for intuitive living, and vice versa. They can not be successfully separated.