Guess who’s waistline is getting smaller. I have committed to fitting my skinny jeans indefinitely. I have been quite busy with the launch of Ungenita Beauty & The Billion Dollar Beauty Club but I promised myself I would make time to work out.
1. Learn to say “no”. One of the hardest things for women in business to say is “no”; we hate to disappoint others, and we hate to admit our limitations. But not saying “no” – and having healthy boundaries with our time as a result – causes most of our troubles, especially overeating. The fact is that when we assume the role of “Wonder Woman” and take on far more than is physically, mentally and emotionally possible, we use food (and other substances) to power us through. Here’s the bottom line: If we expect to eat less, we have to do less. It’s not rocket science. Cut yourself some slack and eliminate one or two activities a week from your schedule. Ask for help with projects you’re stoically trying to handle on your own. Stay home a few nights a week. Making conscious choices that will decrease stress is vital if we expect any real change in our eating behavior.
2. Take a “time out” before dinner. Most of us find that we are most vulnerable to overeating in the evening. During the day, we’re usually too distracted at work to cause much damage. But as soon as we walk in the door of our home, we head straight for the kitchen to find release. If we have kids, the hustle and bustle of home life begs relief more than ever. We find it in boxes and bags while cooking dinner as well as later when everyone is asleep and we finally settle down for some “me” time. Instead of using food to bring you down from a stressful day, try taking a “time out” before preparing dinner. Take 20 minutes in your bedroom for some meditation or a nap. Even just lying on your bed with some relaxing music will help. If your kids begrudge your 20 minutes, insist on at least 10. This “transition” period will help you unwind so that you can enter the kitchen and engage in family life feeling refreshed and energized from within without turning to food to carry you through. To purchase a CD of specific, easy instruction on how to meditate, visit www.healyourhunger.com/products.
3. Make your meals matter. When we’re on the go we have no time to prepare and eat a home cooked meal. So we either skip meals or grab whatever’s handy and eat on the run – in the car, at our desks, or at the kitchen sink. We end up eating things we know aren’t good for us, and which we don’t enjoy anyway because we’re rushed; but we can’t see doing it any differently because we have so much on our plate (pardon the pun). The truth is that if we don’t have time to feed ourselves enjoyable, nutritious meals, we’ll be forced to find time for gym workouts, doctors’ visits, and Weight Watchers meetings! Our battle cry is that we “don’t have time”, yet don’t we always find time for what we deem important? It’s a grave mistake to regard “eating right” as a low priority when in fact there is nothing more important we could do. Try feeding yourself like you’d feed your children or an aging parent: put time, care and love into your meals. Make yourself matter by making your meals matter – you’ll be amazed at the difference!
Our struggles with food are almost always a symptom of the level of stress in our lives. Next time you feel frustrated with your weight, instead of resorting to the newest fad diet, try taking an honest look at your life. Following these three simple suggestions will not only help you achieve more balance overall, but it will help you achieve a healthier relationship with food, yourself and your weight.
Having lost 50 lbs. through identifying and addressing the underlying causes of her emotional eating, Tricia Greaves founded Heal Your Hunger, a resource which offers hope and healing for emotional eaters worldwide. Tricia is a certified coach and an internationally known speaker offering workshops and teleclasses on the topic of emotional eating and healthy weight loss. She is also the contributing author of 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Health and the popular Thank God I book series in which she writes a chapter called, “Thank God I Was Fat.” Tricia has been featured on numerous TV and radio shows including K-USI San Diego, K-EARTH, The WAVE, KPFK, KRLA and WOR, and has a featured column in several magazines worldwide. Tricia’s past clients include: Whole Foods, Curves for Women, Cedars Sinai Weight Management Program and St. John’s Weight Management Program. To learn more and to register for your free “HYH Jump-Start Kit,” visit www.healyourhunger.com.
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Hope and Healing for Emotional Eaters Worldwide