It is a simple fact that we must eat to live—but we should not be living to eat. Food fills an important need when it satisfies actual physical hunger and refuels our bodies to keep them healthy and strong. However, sometimes we develop eating cues to cope with emotional hungers. Have you ever eaten when you were under a lot of stress, angry, sad or bored? Have you ever eaten when you were celebrating a happy time? Have you ever eaten to put off doing something?
Do you ever find yourself eating when you are anxious or worrying about something? There are many things that can trigger emotional hunger. The more we mull them over in our mind, the more that relationships, finances, health, bad weather and global concerns can all weigh on you and lead you to the cupboard or fridge. Eating does not resolve the issue but for a short bit, it may soothe us. If we carry these concerns to bed with us and they interrupt our rest, the tiredness from lack of sleep may even lead us to the kitchen! As the next few days unfold, jot down any emotional hunger triggers you can identify as you go about your day.
We feel the way we think. Worry and anxiety start in the mind. We have within us the power to turn our thoughts around. Are your thoughts rational or irrational? Are you finding constructive steps to resolve issues over which you can have control, or are you rehashing things beyond your influence or power to change for the better? Is an issue yours to resolve? Is it something you need to let go?
My grandmom always said that worry was like trying to go to town in a rocking chair: You can do it all day and not get anywhere. I have found that she is right. Worry wastes time, energy and precious resources and can be exhausting. If you are a worrier who carries all your troubles to bed with you, try this easy exercise for a week. Find a rock (size is up to you) and take it with you when heading for bed. Before climbing in and pulling up the covers, hold the rock and pour all of your cares and concerns into the rock and place it on the nightstand. If the worries start leaking back into your mind, get out of bed, grab the rock and stand there until they are all back in the rock. Then, climb back in bed. Repeat as needed. Eventually, your mind will believe what you are telling it. Bed is for resting and rejuvenation. I can set things aside for that. I am an intelligent person!
I Care, Barb