Emotional Eating

Sorry it’s been a while.  I was out of town and since getting back, I’ve been busy getting back to life and this has been the last thing I’ve gotten back to.  This isn’t really the post I’d planned on writing today.  And maybe I’ll feel up to doing that later, or tomorrow. But this is what’s on my mind, so it’s what I’m sharing.

So, emotional eating.  Everyone (well, most people) does it to some degree.  I do it more than a little.  When I’m happy I eat to celebrate.  I’m working on that part, on rewarding myself in non-food ways and cutting that tie mentally between food and happy.  More challenging is controlling my negative emotional eating.  When I feel bad, I eat, not to make me feel better, but to make me feel bad about something different.  Something that’s within my control.  And that’s not good.  In fact, it makes everything worse and get pull me into a very nasty cycle of eating and self loathing.  And I feel bad a lot of the time – it’s been a really difficult couple of years.

Yet stopping this cycle is really hard.  Especially because it’s not something I usually think about until I’m already in the situation and by then, my brain is not exactly open to logic.  I need to make a better plan ahead of time.  And I try – I don’t generally keep junk in the house.  But it’s not hard to go to Walgreens or the grocery store and buy candy or other crap.  And once I’m in that place, that cycle of self loathing and trying to make myself feel worse, all self control about not buying that crap at the store goes out the window.  Distracting myself generally doesn’t work.  When I’m unhappy or depressed, my attention span and energy level goes pretty close to zero and I can’t read, watch tv, go for a walk, any of my normal coping mechanisms.  It’s by far the worst kind of self sabotage that I engage in.

I know I’m not the only one who struggles with this.  And I’m hoping that as I once again try to eliminate sugar, that the cravings will go away and it will help me from entering this unpleasant, not at all self-serving cycle.  But that’s hope.  Do you have any better ideas?

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