Inspiring you to find peace with food and your body image
Inspiring you to find peace with food and your body image
Getting your thinking sorted around food
by Harriet Frew on September 1st, 2014

What do you do when you find yourself eating way more than you know your body really needs? You have said yes to those delicious cream éclairs when your body said no. You’ve had that second portion of Pinocchio’s lasagne because you didn’t want to waste it. You ate several fish-fingers from your children’s tea dipped in ketchup. You polished off the strawberry cheesecake from the dinner party. It was just asking to be eaten!
There is absolutely nothing wrong with all the above. Yes you might not want to be doing this every single day if you hope to achieve a healthy and sustainable weight. But all the above are part of normal eating. Naturally slim people will engage in all of this eating and think nothing of it.
If you are used to following rules or diets or controlling your eating, then you might have lost sight of this. Therefore, when you find yourself indulging, it sends you into a spiral of self-doubt and self-criticism.
If you want to change this, how you THINK about the eating episode is absolutely essential in determining what happens next with your eating and how you relate to your body.
The ‘I’m out of control around food’ approach
If you are a dieter, controlled eater, perfect mindful eater – then when this happens you are probably thinking thoughts like: -
‘I’ve broken my healthy plan. I’ve fallen off the wagon. I’m a greedy pig. I’m fat. Why can’t I listen to my body? I’ve blown it so why not eat lots more. I’m a failure for messing up’.
These thoughts do not lead to happy feelings. Upset, anxiety, anger, shame, guilt, embarrassment, disillusionment to name a few.
When you thoughts and feelings go like this, then you are not really in love with yourself one bit. You might actually feel quite self-destructive and like beating yourself up a bit more. Motivation to take care of yourself; listen to your body; be kind and compassionate – they are probably very low down your list. You might even weigh yourself to really prove how awful you have been.
Starving or restricting as compensation or more over-eating to dissociate and switch off are likely outcomes.
The self-caring and loving your body approach
When your eating has become very uncaring towards your body, this is the time when you need to work hardest of all to get back on track and be compassionate and supportive of yourself.
People often worry. ‘If I’m compassionate to myself, won’t I just eat everything in sight as I’m letting myself off the hook?’
Actually, in reality, the answer is no. When you really tune in and centre and come back to listening to what your body needs, then stuffing down or starving are not feasible options. Why punish yourself further? Why restrict when it will only lead to a downward spiral, and likely over-eating?
So next time your fall out of tune with your body – be compassionate. Be kind.  Stop and pause. Do something really special for yourself in the moment.
If you overate and enjoyed it – then celebrate that. You are not going to eat like this every day. When nothing is banned, there is no need to eat like it was your Last Supper. You have the choice to eat these foods again tomorrow if you really want to.
How can you think more helpfully?
‘I really enjoyed that food. Now I’m really full. Maybe I don’t want to eat like this every day, but hey life is for living and that was great’.
You will feel happier, in touch with your body; more peaceful; less critical. More self-caring.
When you are not rebelling against rules, paradoxically, you will probably eat less and will not feel the need to stuff food down through feelings of deprivation. Being too strict is not sustainable. Flexibility built in is essential with any eating plan. Ultimately, food is to be enjoyed and one of life’s pleasures.
Do you relate to this? Have you managed to work on your thinking around eating? Please post below.
If you would like to get in touch about working with me to explore some of these issues further, I would love to hear from you. I am passionate about helping you to eat all the foods you love; and feel great about your body without disordered eating or dieting.
Best wishes

Posted in Being mindful, Eating, Giving up dieting, Motivation and change, Self-esteem, Thoughts    Tagged with no tags


Leave a Comment

10 lessons 10 principles of intuitive eating 10 tips 10 ways therapy can help 10 ways 12 days of christmas 20 ways to stop bingeing now 3 steps 5 things to learn 5 ways to silence inner critic 5 ways ACEs Bingeing CELEBRITIES AND SELF ESTEEM CELEBRITY BODY IMAGE Childhood adverse experiences Christma Control DEALING WITH PRESSURE ELLEUK ELLE Easter Eating Disorder Eating problem HOW TO COPE WITH PEOPLE COMMENTING ON YOUR BODY Inside Out Louise Chunn Managing emotions NO DIET New Year Parenting tips Perfectionism RECOVERY FROM EATING DISORDER REJECT DIETS SELFISH MOTHER Sleep Spring about counsellors action alcohol all or nothing anorexia nervosa anorexia recovery anorexiarecovery anorexia anti dieting antidiet anxiety eating anxiety appetite assertiveness assertive beach body beautiful people behaviours being authentic being kind to self bikini body plan bikini body binge eating disorder binge eating recovery binge eating bingeeating bite by bite body confidence body dysmorphia body image workbook body image body love body neutrality body positivity book recommendation boost self-esteem boost selfesteem breakthrough buimia bulimia nervosa bulimia recovery bulimiarecovery bulimia cake can counselling help caring what others think cbt challenging negative thoughts change childhood experiences childhood children and eating disorders children christmas clean eating cognitive behaviour therapy comfort eating comparing self to others comparing with others comparions comparisons compulsive eating compulsive exercise confidence conflict about body size connection contribution counselling critical voice criticism dads deception developing awareness developing healthy relationship with food diet binge cycle diet culture dieting cycle dieting diet disordered eating does self help work dolphin early experiences eating disorder prevention eating disorder recovery eating disorders eating when hungry eatingdisorder eating elizabeth gilbert embracing change emotional eating emotional intelligence emotions envy evening eating exhaustion expectations expressing emotions feelings florence and the machine florence welch food obsession food freedom with food friendship fulfilment fullness fun geneen roth giving up dieting giving goals guilt habit happiness harriet frew healthy eating healthy food healthy weight help for disordered eating helpful help hope how counselling can change your life how to stop binge eating how to stop bingeing how to stop emotional eating how to stop overeating hunger identity improve body image improving body image inferior insulin intuitive eating iphone is your weight your worth janet treasure jealousy jellyfish joy judgement kids and eating disorders kind to body letting go lies listen to body listen to your body loneliness lose control around food lose weight losing control food love body low self-esteem male body image manipulation maudsley model media meeting your needs men and eating disorders mental health mind body connection mindful eating mindfulness mirror mood mothering motivation mums mum my story new year diet new year resolutions ninja warrior no dieting nodiets nodiet not dieting obesity obsession with food obsession on eating orthorexia ostrich over-eating over-exercise overcome binge eating overcome bulimia overcoming fear overeating at Easter overeating overevaluation of shape parenting people pleasing perfect philippa perry pixar film pleasure poor body image positive preoccupation with food pressure problem psychodynamic psychological approach psychology reading about eating disorders reading recovery relapse relationships resolutions restriction binge cycle restriction rest rhino role model root of problem roots of behaviour roots of problem rules about eating rules around eating sabotage satiety saying no secret eating self awareness self conscious self esteem self help books self worth self-acceptance self-awareness self-awarness self-care self-compassion self-confidence self-criticism self-esteem self-help book self-help self-kindness self-loathing self-love self-worth selfcare selfesteem selfworth shoulds social anxiety social eating social media and body image social media song starve stop binge eating stop bingeing stop comparisons stop dieting stopping dieting stress striving success summer support for carers support surviving Christmas susie orbach tablet television therapy thin idealisation things you didn't know thinking about food thinking styles thinking thinner self thin thoughts about food thoughts tips to boost self-esteem tips to love your body tips tired to my client who is struggling trauma tv and body image ulrike schmidt undereating unkind to self validating emotions values value vulnerability wants weighing scales weight conflict weight loss weight wellbeing what is counselling what is therapy when food is love when therapy is hard work
Inspiring you to find peace with food and your body image