Yes, habit change is a simple process of persistent effort to change my behaviors, but _________________. How did you fill in that blank?
Don’t you just hate having actually to name that?
And it may be hard to identify or admit, but it’s an essential element to overcoming emotional eating, to overcome whatever blocks you from your goals.
As an emotional eating coach, I help clients dig DEEP into this one. It can be the crux of the matter, and it’s hard to see on our own – particularly when it isn’t traumatic.
Find a quiet space and think through these questions:
Reinforce: What is my goal?
Reinforce: Why do I want to reach it?
Now dig: To reach my health goals, what habits or behaviors sabotage my efforts?
What’s going on when I fall into those habits or behaviors?
What alternative behaviors can I choose to help me toward my goal? How do I remind myself to incorporate them?
What are my triggers to eat to soothe myself? Is it a place, a particular food, a situation, certain companions, an emotion that pops up, or something else?
Easy way to identify it: When ___________, I __________.
Commit this to paper. It’s harder to avoid it thereafter. I know – also not our favorite.
Remember, this isn’t about logic
Logically, knowing what we need to do, and simply not doing it makes no sense to us. But it’s not based in logic. It’s not really based in our heads at all. It’s somewhere in our hearts from an experience, a connection, a good or bad situation, something denied us, something given freely, something we either don’t recognize or will not see, a strength we value or a weakness we allow or don’t see, and myriad other things. And it is unique to you.
How can you use alternative behaviors to either overcome the triggers or build a bridge over these blocks?
How will you counter your “yeah buts” and focus on making these changes permanent?
When you counter your internal arguments and practice the new behaviors, they become your natural response to the stimulus. I know this isn’t an easy process, and initially, it won’t quite do it for you – the food connection is strong, but it’s not the only option. It’s just easy, and I KNOW you have more about you than that.
If I can be helpful to you in working this out, don’t hesitate to contact me.