I love working with my clients who engage in emotional eating and overdrinking for so many reasons. The first is that they feel their emotions so deeply. With every situation there are emotions that run high and sometimes low, and my clients experience a full array of these swings. For some, these feelings are too intense, and it can be tempting to turn to food or alcohol to buffer the intensity especially the negative ones.
What I want to offer all of you is the idea that you can look at your emotional eating and/or drinking as a gift. I teach my clients and you, my avid blog readers, that the notion that overeating and overdrinking can be viewed as a signal. Urges have a deeper meaning. They mean that you have some emotions to process – a flashing light that something emotionally is going on inside of you that needs to be digested. Eating and drinking prolongs this work and creates more angst in the long-term.
The next time you have an urge to rummage through your pantry when you are not physically hungry, or pour yourself a third glass of wine on a Monday night, hit the pause button. Pause for 15-30 minutes without eating or drinking what you are craving. Don’t ignore this opportunity to tune-in. Check in with yourself to see what is really going on with you emotionally. Take pen and paper out and find out what feelings you are trying to escape from. Allow yourself to experience the urge without resistance and start exploring. Are you trying to escape from boredom, loneliness, fear? Find the feeling that you want to run away from, and move towards it instead of away from it.
Once you identify the emotion, then you can move towards feeling it fully without needing a buffer. Remember, feelings are meant to be felt. They are caused by your thinking and need your attention. Your urges are actually calling you to, signaling you to this. Instead of eating or drinking, trying pausing and then exploring. Practicing this consistently will set you free. If you can find what is behind the desire to overeat or drink and you learn how to actually feel it, you won’t need to turn to food or alcohol to cope any longer.
Next week I will take you into a deep dive into how to feel those feelings all the way through. In the meantime, consider your urges to emotionally eat and drink as a gift instead of some sort of curse. Think of them as flashing red lights telling to feel instead.
The holidays are fast approaching, what better gift to give yourself or someone you love then transformational coaching. If you want to treat yourself or give my program to someone you care about, please reach out here: http://bit.ly/2rD8YZk
In the meantime, the holidays will inevitably include lots of opportunities to feel. Try to pause instead. I don’t want you to gain the average 12 pounds it is estimated the average American gains from Halloween to New Years.
I am thankful you are here and open to learning these life-changing concepts. Have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving, you deserve it.