Many busy women overeat when they are stressed, too busy, or overwhelmed. Eating as a way to calm down is a common form of emotional eating. In my my last post, I gave you a list of three things to stop doing so that you could start taking to begin taking control of this type of overeating. Now it’s time to fill in the gaps. Here are three things to start doing instead.
- Do get into the habit of asking yourself how you are feeling before you eat. Create a ritual of checking in with yourself before you reach for a snack, stop by the vending machine, or serve up your plate. Ask yourself both whether you are physically hungry, and what you are feeling emotionally. Don’t worry if you don’t always know the answers. Creating the habit of checking in with yourself and paying attention to your emotions is an important first step.
- 2. Do create a list of other calming strategies you can start to experiment with. When you aren’t in the midst of a stressful situation, brainstorm some quick, easy ways you might try calming or soothing yourself. Write them down and keep your list somewhere where it is easy to access. Not all your solutions will work in every situation, but that’s okay. You are creating a list of ideas to try. Some solutions others have tried: a few minutes of deep breathing, a walk around the block or even the office, changing tasks, a bath or shower, calling a friend, putting on some music, yoga or stretching, or making a cup of tea.
- 3. Do give yourself permission for this not to go perfectly and tweak and adjust as you go. The goal is to increase your control and you will do that as you become more aware of the reasons and times that you overeat and other strategies that help you make different choices. Don’t focus on making “perfect” changes, focus on learning about yourself and identifying changes that work for you, your preferences and your life.
Take good care,