The most important thing to understand about emotional eating is that it isn’t just a problem or unwanted behaviour. It’s actually a symptom that has a deeper meaning. Emotional eating is a doorway to understanding ourselves and to identify deeper areas that require more love and attention. Your emotional eating may actually be asking you to live a more authentic life. Living with authenticity can actually heal your emotional eating by attaining satisfaction at a deeper level – deeper than what food can provide.
What is Authenticity?
Authenticity can be defined as being true to one’s own self in personality and character. What this means is that our actions and words are consistent with our beliefs and values. Being authentic means being ourselves, instead of what we think we should be or have been told we should be. Living an authentic life create inner peace which can resolve our need to turn to food for pleasure or comfort.
Living an Authentic Life
People often say “be yourself” but where do you start? Below are 3 areas to look at for Authentic Living:
1. Your Beliefs
Take the time to reflect on what is important to you. What are your core rules or guidelines about how you see life, the world and how you believe is best to conduct yourself? Living with authenticity means living in alignment with your core values. What character traits do you value? Are you practicing these? Perhaps you need to make adjustments in your life so that you’re living consistent with your values and beliefs.
2. Your Desires
Are you open and honest with yourself about your true desires in life? Oftentimes, we suppress or bury our dreams and longings – maybe because we don’t believe that they can ever be fulfilled. Whether these desires revolve around love and intimacy, family, education, career, travel or self discovery, if we aren’t honest with ourselves about what we truly desire, we won’t be happy or feel fulfilled. This lack of fulfillment may drive us to turn to food for temporary satisfaction.
While you may not get all you desire, its important not to suppress or deny these desires. At least acknowledging them and feeling them creates more authenticity in our lives. Some of your desires may be unattainable, but often there are many ways for us to work towards achieving our goals and dreams!
Do you often withhold your true feelings from others? Whether its to avoid conflict, rejection or being too vulnerable, emotional eaters tend to keep their feelings bottled up inside. But part of living an authentic life means being honest with yourself and others. If you struggle with expressing yourself, begin with becoming more self-aware. Accept yourself for who you are – both strengths and weaknesses. Let go of perfectionism and strive to become more genuine in your actions and words.
Other ways to be Authentic:
· Not withholding love or compassion
· Expressing your creativity
· Practicing forgiveness
· Having personal integrity
· Following your passions
· Being mindful and living in the present moment
Living an authentic life means learning to honour and trust all that is within us. Whether you need to work on living according to your beliefs, trusting your desires, or opening up to others, living an authentic life can be a powerful way to heal emotional eating.