How To Stop Stress Eating

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I work from home.  Thankfully, not in my kitchen anymore.  But the kitchen is only a few strides away…  And I’ve noticed something about my eating habits.  Something I hate.  Something that happens particularly when I’m working.

The need to feed.  Emotionally.

I started tracking my urges to figure out what this compulsion to stuff food in my face is really all about and here’s what I found.

Transition.

Let’s say I just finished catching up on emails and I’m about to start on a project.

“FOOD IN MY FACE, NOW!” my brain tells me.

Hold on, hold on.  I’m not even hungry.  Whyyyyyy do I feel I need this?

It creates a break.  A transition from one task to another.  

Really, what I need is to press the refresh button on my brain in order to gear up for something new.  So what other things can I do?

First, just saying “Transition” out loud helps me identify what’s going on.

Getting up and moving around really does help.  This could be as simple as a bathroom break or refilling my water bottle or cup of tea.  It could be as FUN as a mini dance party -pick a song, crank it up, bounce around, WOOHOO!  That truly helps me reset and refocus.

Sometimes (gasp!) I even do squats.  Just stand up, do a set of 25 and get back to work.  Sense of accomplishment?  Bingo.  Transition?  Achieved.  Unnecessary face-stuffing?  Avoided.

We’re not meant to sit in one place, staring at a computer screen, plowing forward on multiple projects with no mental break.

And when I start checking social media like a fiend, that’s also another sign that I need a transition, something to help me refocus and get my energy up again.  I’m pushing against my current task (usually out of fear or boredom) and I need to shake it off.

Allow yourself healthy transitions -even just saying it aloud to acknowledge that’s what you’re feeling.

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