It’s coming up to that cosy time of year again… the leaves will stall falling, scented candles will be lit in homes across the nation and a huge group of us will be … comfort eating.
I was inspired to write this blog post after seeing something on Facebook – it was one of those circulars that everyone seems to be posting… you know, something like : I love this time of year because of hot chocolate, candles, boots, mittens…..
And I saw a comment that someone had posted that talked about how this is also that time of year when everyone starts comfort eating… Mac n Cheese, jacket potatoes, hot chocolates with cream and marshmallows…….
if YOU are sitting there nodding your head at this, and know that when next January comes you will be wishing that you hadn’t done so much comfort eating then how about we make a pact, right here, and now – to agree to make this Autumn different..
1. Choose to not comfort eat… lock it down, make it official.
Write it down, make it official, let your friends and family know, and decide to really work on this, and set your mind to it. Like with most things, the change can happen when we give ourselves the instructions to change things. Only YOU choose what to order, pop in your basket and cook in the oven. And YOU choose what to put into your mouth.
Choose to do things differently this Autumn and Winter and say no to the comfort food. Well… you don’t have to say no just…
2. Eat yummy things – in moderation..
Think like a French person when it comes to yummy things – little and often, but in moderation …. go out and treat yourself to things that you want to eat….. maybe a nice little pastry, some hot chocolate, but give yourself things in much smaller portions, and do it the French way. Having something to look forward to is usually what drives us when it comes to comfort eating…
Think about it – how often have you found yourself sitting at work talking about the nice treat that you are going to have that evening… only to find yourself then sitting there, eating half of a packet of biscuits, beating yourself up about it and not even really enjoying it?
Get something really special, but small, and savour the treat – then leave yourself having thoroughly enjoyed it, wanting more, but also feeling satisfied. This will stop you from gaining so much weight but will meet that need of wanting to have something to look forward to.
3. Think about the motives behind why you comfort eat.
Sometimes, as I have said above, we just want to have something nice to look forward to. But if you find that actually, there is more going on than that and that you are turning to food, because you are deep down miserable – then let’s talk about that. Often loneliness, or an unhappy lifestyle can mean that we want to numb how we are feeling by eating.
Think about it, eating distracts us as it keeps all of our senses busy. How many times have you been sat on the sofa, feeling really low, and look around the room and think ‘I’ll pop to the kitchen’… in some ways, for us English, it’s ingrained into us – life gets tough you pop the kettle on for example.. you distract yourself.
Address what is going on.. sit with the silence, and don’t just run to the kitchen. Make a choice to wait 15 minutes before acting on that impulse and see if it passes. Have a glass of water handy as often we crave food when we are actually thirsty. Be aware and mindful about what is happening for you and have a journal handy. Write it down. Then write down what choice you made – did you eat the cake or did you wait it out and move past it?
Of course, if something is going on for you, keeping a journal may help you gain some clarity on that but did you know that you can also book a free clarity call with me so that you can see whether a one to one session with me might be right for you? Book yours here.
On a final note: comfort eating is normal and we all do it. There is nothing wrong with wanting nice things. Life is short, buy that chocolate! BUT if you know that you are using food as a substitute, and something to do because you are lonely or miserable then it’s time to address things.
Sticky bun anyone?
Until the next time,
Have a great week