If you struggle with emotional eating, food, weight and your diet likely consume your thoughts, actions and decisions on a daily basis. All your energy is being wasted by focusing on this one area, while everything else in your life takes a back seat. But by doing this, you’re creating a dangerous imbalance. When all your energy is focused on your weight, your self-care suffers. If you want to heal your emotional eating, you need to find balance.
To create balance, you need to spread your energy around into different areas of your life rather than focusing all your energy on your weight loss efforts. If you can redirect your energy to other areas of your life, you’ll achieve balance. Emotional eating has no business sticking around when everything is balanced!
Redirecting your energy really means creating and following a self-care routine. And not the type of self-care you do once every blue moon. Self-care should be an integral part of your daily life. There are 5 key areas that you should redirect your energy if you’re ready to heal your emotional eating:
1. Mindful eating
When you eat well, you feel good. You don’t need to stress about being hungry, or what you’re going to eat next because you’re paying attention to your hunger cues and acting accordingly. Instead of binge or overeating, learn to trust your body. With this trust, you can eat slowly and mindfully which is the opposite of emotional eating. By putting your efforts towards mindful eating, you’re creating new healthy habits and no longer stressing about food.
Moving your body doesn’t necessarily mean hitting the gym every day. If you hate the gym, you don’t have to go. The worst thing for your body is to force it to do something out of punishment. But you should be moving your body in some way. Whether this means going for a walk, swimming at a community pool, or joining a recreational sports team, choose movement that works for you. Focusing your energy on movement that feels good nourishes your body so you won’t need to turn to food to feel good.
Kids love to play. But as we transition into adulthood, that playfulness seems to disappear. Of course, we have more responsibilities that occupy our time. But, if we don’t take time to have fun and play, our attention and energy are focused on the stress in our lives. Stress is a major trigger for emotional eating, so by incorporating more play, we can create better balance.
4.Connecting with Others
When we’re only focused on our weight, we may skip dinners and parties with friends so that we can stick with whatever fad or restrictive diet we’re following. This can hurt our emotional, mental and physical health, maybe more than you think. Having social connections is so important to feel loved, accepted and safe. When we don’t have these connections, we feel empty and crave comfort. That’s when we turn to food to fulfill that need. Focus your energy on maintaining healthy relationships with others to stop emotional eating.
5. Me Time
It’s important to create time and space to just be. No plans, no schedule…no stress! Often, we ignore our feelings and other triggers that make us stumble into emotional eating because we try and keep ourselves busy. If you take time to slow down, you can reflect on what’s going on in your life and sit with your feelings. This is how you process your emotions in a healthy way and heal emotional eating for good!
Take some time today to create a schedule or self-care routine that gives your time and energy to each of these 5 areas. Self-care is all about finding balance and directing your energy to all areas of your life, instead of just obsessing about your weight.
What areas of your life do you need to redirect your energy to?