Three healthy ways to take care of your emotional needs (and stop using food as your therapist)

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“When I feel irritated with my husband, I eat. 

When I feel resentful with my busy schedule, I eat. 

When I feel that there is no time for me, I comfort myself with food.”

Emotional Self-Care is so important if you are an emotional eater.

Your emotions are the expression of what is happening to you. Eating in response to your emotions may lead to the consumption of excessive calories which typically leads to weight gain.

The biggest lesson I learned from, not taking care of my emotional needs and using food as my therapist, is that the only way to prevent emotional burnout is to attend to my needs first, so that I can always feel vibrant and energised.

Here are some ways to identify if you are using food to cope with your Emotional needs:

  • Do you find yourself eating when you’re not really hungry?
  • Do you turn to food when you feel stressed and overwhelmed?
  • Do you use food as a source of comfort when you’re feeling sad, anxious, or bored?
  • Do you often find yourself saying yes when you’d like to say no?

The benefits of taking care of your emotional needs

  • Improves your mental health.
  • Helps to prevent mental and emotional burnout.
  • Is like fuel for your mind and heart
  • Let’s you show up more focused and productive
  • You will be less tempted to use food for comfort

Let’s explore the Three healthy ways to take care of your emotional needs…

Step One: Build Self-Awareness

So many of us are racing through our lives without taking the time to stop and become aware of how we feel.

The first step in taking care of your emotional needs is becoming aware of these needs. Emotional Eating often arises from a ‘lost sense of emotional self.”

Self-awareness — is your ability to recognise, understand and label your own feelings, along with the ability to asses these feelings.

Step Two: Listen to Your Emotions

Knowing what particular emotion you’re feeling will help you to take effective action. And the more you understand your emotions, the more you’re able to work with—instead of against—yourself.

Be present and honest with yourself when listening to your emotions. This may feel challenging at first and you may drift off to doing work activities.

  • Check in with your self-daily, and ask “what am I feeling?”
  • Try and express what you’re feeling precisely
  • Then explore to understand what you are really feeling
  • You may want to journal to keep track of your emotions

Step Three: Schedule your Emotional Self-Care activities

Grab a note pad and list some emotional self-care activities that will that restore and rejuvenate you.

  • Plan ahead and block out times the same way you plan your appointments
  • Then schedule a time at least once a week
  • Then schedule a time for an activity you want to do monthly
  • Plan ahead and block out times the same way you plan your appointments

When your take care of your emotional needs, you will be bursting with energy, feel emotionally balanced, spiritually enhanced and ready to cope even when life gives you lemons!

When your body, mind, and soul are and cared for, you will feel calm and present.

Now it’s over to you…

How can you start taking care of yourself emotionally?

If you feel ready to start taking care of your emotional needs so you can feel emotionally balanced, spiritually enhanced and ready to cope even when life gives you lemons, lets chat… book a free 15minute mini-coaching session with me and I’ll show you how to transform your life.

If you’d like some inspiration to chew on instead of whatever’s in your fridge or pantry consider reading my regular posts. 

Irena Geller

Emotional Eating Coach

BSc (Biomed), Cert IV (PT), Wellness Coach (Level 3))

I coach 35+ women to put down their fork and pick up their life.  If you want to end your struggles with excess weight, stress and self-belief, using your strengths and capabilities, book a free 15-minute mini-coaching session with me and I’ll show you how to transform your life.

References

1. The Relationship Between Basic Need Satisfaction and Emotional Eating

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