Wouldn’t it be great if you could instantly zap out your feelings of anger, irritation or frustration whenever they pop up?
Irritations and annoyances are part of life, yet they can contribute to chronic low-grade stress draining your energy and resilience. In turns, low-grade stress undermines your motivation to nourish your body and affects your immunity.
The lack of ability to assess and accept our emotions is one of the main cause of today’s stress and poor decisions. However, without the challenges, without the negative emotions, imperfections, irritations and annoyances, there is no goodness. We all setback and learn from it at some stage.
Awareness is the first step for change. I encourage you to pause and take the time to deeply reflect about your main emotional triggers when you are not eating as you intend to.
From sharing with many women over the last years, I have listed the five most common triggers. For each, there is an emotion associated with. Find what is your principal trigger and consider an option to stop making food a substitute for any uncomfortable emotion, sensation or thought.
Do you overeat or eat mindlessly:
1- After a hard day’s work, or a specific accomplishment?
You use food as a reward.
Would you consider green tea, a nap, or a massage as a way to reward yourself?
2- From boredom, sadness, anger?
You use food for comfort
What do you miss really? A hug from a friend, some time for yourself, a bath, a walk in nature?
3- At a specific time of the day, when you come back from work or as soon as you wake up?
You eat mindlessly or out of habit.
What about implementing a new ritual such as having some water, preparing some herbal tea, or going for a walk beforehand?
4- When you do perform a specific activity, like watching TV?
You associate food with relaxation.
Would you consider some restorative yoga, deep breathing or practising self-massage?
5- In some specific circumstances, like having nibbles with a drink or celebrating with a cake?
You use food to socialise or to comply.
Could you learn to socialize around a walk, some healthy cooking together or a cinema session? Or could you not eat when you do socialize by focusing on the conversation?
When you learn to recognize and accept your emotions, you improve your stress resilience and your food choices.
What are your main triggers and thought processes associated with food? Does it have something to do with nourishing your body? Please share.