Filling Needs with Food
First off, I have to confess something: I struggle with Intuitive Eating. A lot. I still eat emotionally often enough that I rarely get the chance to feel real hunger. I’m still working at it though, and I’m committed to a diet-free life in favor of learning to listen to my body’s signals.
I spend a lot of time reflecting on why I feel the need to eat when I’m not actually hungry. I need something, but it’s not food. What is it?
I’m the kind of person that needs a lot of solitude. Several hours a deal is ideal, but that’s a rare luxury for a full-time nanny for six awesome, involved kids. Between cooking, cleaning, driving around to school and lessons and planning Harry Potter-themed birthday parties, I’m lucky if I can sneak up to my room for an hour a day or stay awake to read a little before bed. I need to recharge my batteries with some silence and time to think, but if I get a few busy days in a row (like this week) I get extra munchy. It’s like I think “I can’t go to my room and read right now, but I can eat this cupcake! Nom nom nom!” or “Waaay too much stuff going on right now, I bet a sandwich would calm things down.” Nope. Doing my job with a food baby is super uncomfortable. I love my job, but I get overwhelmed easily because I need solitude.
So that’s what I need, not food.
If you eat emotionally, I urge you to examine your life. Pay attention to your thoughts when you’re about run to the welcoming arms of a milkshake. Consider the factors that could have triggered the impulse. Write it down if you need to, do some soul searching, and above all make sure you take care of yourself. Take some time for yourself to figure out what you need, and if you’re someone like me, time to yourself may be all you need.