I’m having a day. There’s quite a bit of upheaval surrounding a particular business issue and it’s going to have repercussions for a week or two. This will involve a lot of scrambling and ruffled feathers that will need to be smoothed. It isn’t something I was expecting and I had no control over it, but it’s here and I have to deal with it.
All of this makes me want to eat an ice cream cone—a big one. Screw that, I want a whole fricking sundae with hot fudge, whipped cream, a cherry, nuts, the works.
Instead, I’ll be running a 5K tonight with my family. I’m strong. I can do this.
After all, feeling bloated and fat isn’t going to make me feel better. Pounding out my frustrations on the pavement is going to feel a whole lot better. Yes, the sundae is easier and definitely tastes better, but stress eating creates more problems than it solves.
Ways to Avoid Stress Eating
I stress eat. This is my achilles heel with healthy eating and has been my nemesis for a few years now. I’m more aware of it than ever which is a good thing. I recognize the little stresses, the little tug for something sweet, and I stop myself most of the time. The scale has reflected this with a more svelte version of me, which reinforces everything. The upward spiral is a good thing. Here’s how I distract myself from numbing out with food.
- Meditation. I find that if I focus on my breathing, I’ll eventually forget that I want a cookie. The quick version is to count the number of inhales and exhales up to 42. (I read that somewhere, so I do 42. I honestly have no idea why that number, but it does work.) The longer version of meditation uses mala beads and chanting. Depending on my time, I’ll do that.
- A bloody hard workout. There is something very cathartic for me to work out my stress in sweat. To push and pull things or to go for a run or hop on my Spin bike. To become so sweaty it looks like I just came out of the shower. When my body is exhausted, the frustration just ebbs away and then I can better focus on the actions needed.
- Calling a friend. Thank God for my friends: the other women business owners who understand the ups and downs, my fabulous husband who supports me whether I need a hug or just a kind ear, my Mom who will let me rant on for a while without judging. I don’t know what I’d do without them. They always make me laugh by the end of the conversation and laughter always makes me feel normal.
How do you avoid stress eating? I could always use a few more ideas.