Eating to Fill the (Emotional) Emptiness Inside
Do you sometimes eat to the point of stuffing yourself full, without really knowing why you are doing it? It’s not really about hunger. Afterwards do you blame it on PMT, the menopause, your boss, partner, children, stress or stuff going on in your life? Yes? I’ve been there, and I’m guessing you have done it too. This emotional eating can cause you to gain weight and also sabotage your efforts to lose weight, so it’s time to let go of these emotional barriers.
Although this is now rare for me, in the past I would find myself emotionally eating and afterwards I would feel awful. Sometimes I’d eat so much I’d feel physically sick and bloated, and also guilty, embarrassed and ashamed. I didn’t understand why I did it. I would vow never to do it again, but time and time again I broke my promise to myself.
So what has changed? Over the last 10 years I’ve slowly, but steadily, learnt to love myself and no, it hasn’t always been an easy path. Today I can look into a mirror and see a beautiful, mature woman whereas once I believed that I was ugly. I’ve learnt about emotions in great depth, both professionally and because I needed to understand my own intuitive, empathic abilities. And as part of my own healing, I had to begin feeling my emotions too, including the heavy ones that I had always avoided. Now I wish to help you too: to heal your emotional relationship with your body and with food (and also with drink, because alcohol and caffeine are big triggers in emotional eating too). Let me share with you a little more…
Emotional Reasons for Overeating – Why Do We Do It?
We are emotional beings, and yet strangely most people have only a vague understanding of their emotions. With light emotions, for example happiness, bliss, joy or contentedness, the message from these emotions is readily understood: life is good and we express these emotions easily with smiles, laughter and a spring in our step. Alas our heavy emotions, like anger, rage, jealousy, panic, fear, grief or shame – well, most people have no idea how to deal with these emotional messages in a healthy way. And so these emotions are either ignored, repressed or dumped onto someone else, none of which is healthy.
Each emotion has an energy. And each has a message. There aren’t good or bad emotions, they are just messages and sources of energy that tell you something about what is going on in your life. When the message is recognised, dealt with and expressed, then its energy is released and it leaves your life. Think about this for a moment. Recall a really happy, magical moment in your life. Do you see (or feel) that in your mind’s eye? Now, how long did those intense feelings of happiness last? Minutes? Whilst contentedness can last for ages, intense happiness, joy or bliss doesn’t last for even one hour. And nor should it. Hanging on to a happy emotion beyond the time for expression is as unhealthy as hanging on to a heavy emotion, as both ultimately drain our energy away.
How to Stop Emotional Eating Forever
All of the Eat Well—Be Well programs teach you about how emotional emptiness is a trigger for overeating and how to overcome it. Intellectually understanding your emotional triggers helps you begin to deal with emotional eating, but this alone can’t change your eating patterns, especially when your triggers are at their most powerful. To help you release these emotional triggers and the eating patterns associated with them, I teach EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) which is a really easy, yet powerful healing technique. I will also show you other methods such as Belly Breathing and anchoring, so that you can release your emotions, and naturally heal the emotional emptiness inside.