Quite a few people know what emotional eating is. Some folks think it is conjured up and an excuse.
I found this definition on the interwebz but it’s a bit harsh for my liking.
“Compulsive overeating, also sometimes called food addiction, is characterized by an obsessive/compulsive relationship to food.”
You see in the South we celebrate every occasion with food and therefore tend to connect every type of emotion under the sun with food. EVERYTHING.
Ironically I married a man who is NOT emotionally attached to food. I’ve learned a lot from him.
Food either tastes good to him, or it’s meh… He never eats because he’s stressed or anything like that. In fact I at times I put food in front of him as a reminder to eat.
It’s actually quite cool as an emotional eater to witness in reality that non-emotional eating really exists. It has helped me come to the following conclusion on handling food.
-When you look at food you shouldn’t be trying to decide if it will make you feel better or worse. You should only be thinking “it’s time for me to fuel my body with the best possible option, is that what this particular food will do?”
Once I accepted the responsibility that I managed food and it didn’t manage me, things really begin to change.
When you are caught up in the cycle of eat bad, feel bad so eat more bad and feel worse, it is totally up to you to break that mental cycle. It has nothing to do with the food.
You see when I first started losing weight, I had weight loss momentum on my side. I ate clean 6 days a week, had a free day and I worked out 6 days a week and rested one. The weight literally started falling off. 125# in the first year.
But the real changes for me didn’t start happening until I started unpacking my baggage chest. For 8 years I went up 20 pounds and down 20 pounds. Constantly yo-yo dieting and never really putting my finger on what the issue was.
One day I stood in my kitchen with my hand literally in the cookie jar, with my cup of milk about to commence in the Oreo dunking party when I realized that I was defeating my very own purpose.
At that moment came the first epiphany. That ah-ha moment when I cracked open the proverbial baggage trunk for the first time. I was flooded with guilt and shame and all sorts of emotion from the shoe boxes within that chest.
At that moment however, true healing began.
One shoe box of baggage at a time was revealed, acknowledged, ultimately forgiven and then released into that unknown space of healing.
I wrote letters to people who had wronged me, vented all of my frustrations, then burned them. Somehow this process allowed for me to let go of bitterness and hurt I was holding on to.
I wrote letters of apology and requested forgiveness and actually mailed those.
Once I had dealt with the process of letting go, surprisingly the emotional eating episodes slowed down and now are almost completely non-existent.
Never give up on yourself. Learn to love and appreciate the wonderful things you are capable of and forgive yourself for the seemingly stupid mistakes you’ve made and move on.
Life is so much better with a trunk filled with peace.