Last week, I hosted a little coaching call during which some of my long-time clients could call in, ask questions, and get feedback from me and some other experts. One question, in particular, caught my attention, and because I believe so many people deal with this kind of thing on a regular basis, I decided to write an article on the topic.
Enter “emotional eating.”
Simply put, emotional eating can be absolutely catastrophic to any diet plan.
“And things were going SO well….”
Yes, I know the feeling.
Time to put an end to that nonsense once and for all.
When talking about emotional eating, it’s most common to find “stress” right there at the root of the problem. We get stressed; we eat ice cream, pizza, or [fill in the blank]. It’s human nature.
BUT, it sure isn’t helping us along the path to a better, healthier body. And this is exactly where people go wrong.
Let’s face the facts: we ALL do—and will continue to—deal with stress on a regular basis. It’s a part of life that isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. But it’s how we deal with stress that can either lead to a fitter, healthier lifestyle or a fatter, unhappy, unhealthy one.
You see, when dealing with stress, we’ll ultimately choose either a “negative” or a “positive” way to cope with that stress.
And here’s the most important thing to realize in this whole discussion: if you do not ACTIVELY look for, plan for, and choose positive ways to cope with stress, you WILL, almost naturally, choose negative coping mechanisms—such as stuffing your face with 87 chocolate chip cookies, which, by the way, I have NEVER done…I cut it off around 63 because I have a little something called discipline. Geez.
But, the good news is that there is a ton of “positive” ways to cope with stress. Here are a few that I really enjoy and much prefer over accumulating body fat and becoming even more depressed:
- Going for a jog, long walk, or drive
I love all three of these activities because they give me the opportunity to let my mind just zone out and think. In fact, when I go for a run when I’m stressed, I find that I don’t really even realize I’m exercising because my mind is distracting me so much from the fact that I’m really “working.” It’s pretty cool when you’ve gone a mile or two without even realizing it’s been that long. At the same time, I’m clearing my mind and getting the “feel good” endorphins pumping throughout my brain and body—great to relieve stress, even better for my body.
And if, for whatever reason, I just don’t feel up for exercising, I’ll hop in the car and go for a drive. Nothing like cruisin’ and thinking a bit to clear my mind and cope with whatever may be currently going on in my life.
- Jammin’ out to some KILLER music
I absolutely love music. I go to concerts like it’s nobody’s business, and I just love how music can evoke so many different types of emotional responses.
And you know what’s even better? Combining music with one of the activities from #1 above.
Boo-yah! Stress be gone!
Do you want to seriously end emotional and binge-eating behaviors once and for all? Then you HAVE to make a conscious effort to find and choose healthy, positive coping mechanisms.