Do you want to stop binging, suffering from self-loathing, and get free from emotional eating?
Check out my amazing 8-part podcast series on mindful eating with Robin Mize and how I stopped binge eating for good! As you may know, I struggled for years with my weight. I was always worried that I was not skinny enough or that I needed to eat the “right” food and do the “right” exercise all the time. It was an impossible way to live. I was always unhappy because I could never live up to the unrealistic expectations I placed on myself, and that I let society place on me.
I would often binge eat and then fall into an internal downward emotional spiral. Regret, remorse, and self-loathing where my best friends. I would ask myself how did this happen again and why am I such a failure? Little did I know that the answer was not what food I ate or exercises I did or didn’t do. I had been eating my emotions for over a decade. When I was stressed I ate; when I was sad I ate; and when I was happy I ate. Learning about and understanding my emotions was the key to my success.
Can you relate to the above statement? If so, you may find great relief in mindful eating like I did. To clarify when I say mindful eating what I don’t mean is a “special diet” what I do mean is being consciously aware of the food you eat and the emotions around it. Knowing the differences between eating because your hunger verse because you’re emotional is key. By doing this I was able to lose 35 pounds and still enjoy all the foods I wanted.
I personally don’t restrict myself from sweets or high-fat foods, I simply eat them being fully aware of why I am eating them. Robin often says “you need to be able to trust your body when it says its hunger for carbs, eat some carbs”. Robin also famously says “What you resist persists” which explains why when I would force myself to avoid “bad food” all week and when the weekend would come I would binge eat into a remorseful state of mind. This was such an unhealthy way of living.
Simply changing your mindset will not solve your eating problem, it’s not that easy. It took me 4 years to get to the place I am today and it was totally worth it. I also did not do this alone. I needed help! I did not even know where to start, but why would I? It’s not about how smart you are or how quick you learn it’s about slowing down and listening to the voice inside you and recognizing and learning about your personal emotions.
Meals and exercises no longer dictate my life! During my journey, I discovered so much about myself and all the different influences that affected my food choices and I have to say there was a lot! Below I have included some exercises to get you started on your own personal mindful/conscious eating journey. Once you have completed the exercise feel free to leave a comment on this blog with what you discovered, maybe we will feature YOUR story on the podcast. I am thinking about doing another complete series on eating healthy, managing your emotions, working through difficult situations with loved ones and a few more. Are you interested in joining the journey? Do you have any suggestions? Click here to sign me up
Love you all and keep on discovering yourselves
Here are some of the exercises I do!
Exercises provided by Robin Mize
Mindful eating exercise:
In this exercise, choose a food that has a strong sensory quality, like an orange. But it can be anything. Slow down when the food is in front of you, and notice what is happening physically. Try these 4 simple steps…
Start with your senses:
What does it look like, smell like, feel like? What emotional associations do you have with it? How hungry do you feel? How full?
Now notice your emotions:
Do you feel guilty, anxious, or happy?
Now think about where this food came from.
Where was it grown? Is it processed in a factory? Was it shipped or did it come from someplace local? What store did it come from?
Then take a bite, and spend some time noticing all the sensations that you feel:
Temperature, texture, taste, smell. Then notice any emotions that arise. Are you ashamed of how you eat? Do you notice any stories about deserving, or not deserving?
Restrictors and Permitters:
Awareness exercise In her book “Women Food and God,” Geneen Roth identified two kinds of emotional eaters: restrictors go for rules and diets, then rebel against the deprivation. Permitters feel they don’t ever want any rules, because the idea of indulgence fills an emotional void. For both, slowing down and becoming aware of the stories we are telling ourselves is important. Mindful awareness is how to see the kind of thinking we are steeped in.
What are you telling yourself about your relationship to food, and about yourself? Recognize that these stories are not the truth about who we are, but only a facet of our history. Try not to come to this awareness with any judgement about good and bad, but with compassion for the pain these stories may cause us.
Family History exercise:
This is a very important step in understanding our relationship to food. What was dinner like in your childhood home? Did either parent have an unhealthy relationship to food? Did they treat you with either over-restricting (no sugar allowed, commenting on your weight if you wanted seconds) or over-permitting (using food to express approval or love). Notice what stories you tell yourself, what foods have special emotional meaning?