Last week in my interview with body image counselor Golda Poretsky of Body Love Wellness, she talked about how important mindful eating is. Mindful eating is where you are connected to the experience of eating. You taste the food, even savor it. As opposed to robotically shoving it in.
There’s a lot of reasons one might mindlessly eat. And lately, I’ve been guilty of a few of them.
I’m exhausted. When I’m putting in exceptionally long hours at work, I tend to eat to console myself–both physically and mentally. Last night, I was going to eat just a few chips. I was too tired to do anything but keep digging in the bag for another. I was watching The Bachelor on DVR and those chips were about as exciting to me as Ben Flajnik is (could those have chosen a lamer Bachelor? Seriously, he sucks. But I digress).
So Ben sent Jamie home and I was staring at the bottom of an empty bag. I was still exhausted. And still in a bad mood.
Golda suggested pinpointing what is driving the emotional eating. By getting in touch with your needs, you can address them in a more effective way.
I’ve done that to an extent. And I emotionally eat leaps and bounds less than I used to. But I still have a ways to go.
Physical exhaustion plays a big role. When you are working over ten hours a day, commuting and working on weekends in an office without heat, it’s tough (strike up the violins, I know). Laundry piles up, stuff needs to be picked up at the store, calls needs to be made and returned and so on. I’m lucky that I have my husband now who helps me. I used to have to muddle through this all alone.
A lot of people give the advice to “just say no.” Set boundaries, be assertive. Good advice, but it has its limits. Admittedly, I’m a workaholic. And it’s hard for me for me to say no–I’m too conscientious (read: sucker). In the legal field, as in so many others, it’s ingrained into you that the hours you work translate into your self-worth. I’ve worked with so many people who brag about how they never see their family. Never work out. Never have the time to do any of the things that are important to them. And it’s even worse when your job isn’t what you want to be doing.
I’ve broken free of that thinking (mostly? somewhat?) At the very least, I want the time to do the things that are important to me. I spent years canceling plans with friends and family. Not buying tickets to things, fearful they’d go unused. Not going to the doctor, even when I really needed it. And I gave up on my lifelong passion–writing. Continue reading