Welcome to Becoming Me, a monthly blog series where I set out to answer questions developed by Christie Inge, HHC in an effort to dig a little deeper and get to the heart of some of my esteem, body, and food issues.
Last month, I tackled the issue of whether or not I trust my body and what would happen if I did.
This month’s question:
Do you eat when you aren’t hungry? Do you stop eating when you feel full? No? Why not?
Oh my, this is an easy one.
YES, I eat when I’m not hungry.
NO, I don’t stop eating when I’m full.
I’m really, REALLY trying on this one. I can recognize in myself that I’m an emotional eater. I actually have it under a lot more control than I used to. It used to be so bad that I would sneak food. If I was have a craptastic day with the kids (when they were younger), I’d grab a box of whatever salty or sweet thing I could and head outside to eat in peace. If I was at the store by myself, I’d buy myself a king size candy bar and devour it before I got home because I “deserved it”.
As I sit here and right this, I realize that this wasn’t that long ago, and it didn’t stop when they got older. (And in no way is it there fault.) I’m definitely better about turning to food when I’m stressed, but I still do it occasionally. And the whole “rewarding myself with a big ass candy bar because I deserve it” deal. Yeah. I may have done that a week or two ago.
I wasn’t hungry when I ate those things, but there was some comfort value in it. I remember getting a candy bar with my mom whenever we went to the store and sharing it in the car on the way home. I feel like I don’t do that with my own kids, but I still do it with me. It makes me think of being a kid and my mom and that makes me feel good.
Until I eat it. Then I feel like a hypocritical (hello…you write for a weight loss blog), selfish, guilty pile of crap. And half the time…fine MOST of the time… it doesn’t taste nearly as good as I hoped/thought/remembered it would.
As far as stopping when I’m full…
Again, I’m better than I used to be, but I’m still a card carrying member of the Clean Plate Club. I struggle with breaking this cycle with my own kids, hovering somewhere between letting it go if they only eat a few bites, to getting mad when they don’t eat more at restaurants.
I talked a lot about this last month, and for me, it’s still a daily struggle. In my mind, if I make the food, I’m going to eat the food. I eat way past the point of being full, and I’ll go back for seconds. If I order the food, you better damn well bet that I’ll finish it, and probably get dessert.
In my mind, it seems like such a waste of time and money. If I took the time to make it, I “should” eat it. If I spent the money to buy it, I “should” eat it.
I know I need to make that jump to: If it doesn’t make you feel good, you should STOP doing it.
My best intentions are always thwarted by inaction.
Have you heard the tip that when you are eating a meal, listen for your body to sigh? When you hear that first sigh, it’s your bodies way of telling you that you are full and to stop eating.
I recognize that sigh. I feel it, sometimes I hear it. There are times when it is a full body motion. I think to myself, “That’s it. There’s the sigh. It’s time to stop eating.”
Then Voice 2 answers Voice 1, “But there’s still food on your plate. Just go ahead and finish it. There’s not that much. You can do it!”
Yes. I cheer myself on to eat past the point of comfort. And yes, I have two voices in my head. I know you do, too.
Anyhoo, now I feel called to action. It’s really kind of stupid the way I sneak food and keep eating past the point of being full. I’m not doing myself any favors and I’m not being the best role model for my kids. This month, I’m going to make a conscience effort to leave the candy bar in the store, eat my food out in the open, and listen for that sigh.
I need to (re)gain some control!
Christie Inge, HHC is an intuitive eating and body image coach and is the creator of The Body Love Alchemy Community. After years on the diet and binge roller coaster, she realized that the answers she was looking for had nothing to do with the size of her blue jeans or the food on her plate. She set out onto a quest to make peace with food, her body and her weight once and for all. She began sharing her experiences on her popular, heartfelt blog. Overtime, she found that her greatest gift was helping women, just like her, overcome their struggles, too.
She has taken what she learned in the school of hard knocks and coupled that with what she has learned in her professional trainings to create a system that has helped thousands of women to make peace with food and to stop hating their bodies. She offers support, insight, and real world tools for creating a body and life you love. You can stay in touch with by subscribing to her inspirational weekly eLetter or join the conversation facebook and twitter.