A Holiday FEAST!

The Great FEAST…
be sure to FEAST this holiday season, you are sure to get results!

We can get so lost in the daily grind of the holiday season. We were once in touch with ourselves, but have lost this connection.  This year, be IN CHARGE of your eating decisions.  Mindful eating can be a liberating process if your embrace it, give yourself grace, consider each eating opportunity as an opportunity to learn and be curious about the steps!

Today I would like to take you through the FEAST! As a licensed facilitator for the “Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program”, this is a tool I use to help you meet your TRUE needs when you want to eat but are not hungry.  Come along, let’s see what this FEAST is all about!

F:  Focus
Let’s say you have realized you have an urge to eat, but do not want to eat because you are not hungry.  You decide to figure out WHY you have this urge. 

  • So, take a break, remove yourself from the site and smell of food and get in tune to yourself through a mind-body-scan.  This is simply an activity where you close your eyes, while in a seated position, take deep calm breaths and see what your body tells you as you give attention to different parts of your body.  Work from bottom to top.  What do you feel? What sensations do you notice? What thoughts are coming in and out? What are your feelings? What are they telling you?

That’s it!  That is how you FOCUS!.

E:  EXPLORE
This is your opportunity to see what may be triggering the non-hunger desire to eat.  This is what TRIGGERS your urge to eat. This time of year it can be so many things! Such as the smell and site of food, family gatherings, emotions related to a recent disagreement.  Take time to EXPLORE how you feel.  Consider filling in the blanks: “I feel ___________ because ______.” Ask yourself “what else could be going on?”

A:  Accept
Guilt. Shame. Disappointment.  These are frequent emotions my clients describe to me when they eat when they are not hungry.  I would like to encourage you! If you have felt this way in the past, you don’t have to anymore. 

  • What would it be like if you approached your eating experiences WITHOUT judgment? 
  • What if you accept the actions, learn from them and choose to respond differently next time.  Eliminate thinking of your actions as good/bad, right/wrong.
  • ACCEPTING will remove sham and guilt and allow you to move towards a more MINDFUL eating experience. 
  • Give it a try!

S:  Strategize
Now you are ready to come up with a plan to deal with the real reason you want to eat, even when not hungry! Ideally, these will be more healthy responses than what you have chosen in the past. Maybe you need to talk to someone, take a break from food preparation or maybe your need is something greater.  You get to decide what will best meet your need other than food. Make it different this year!

T:  Take Action
Great work! You have:

  • FOCUSED on what your body is telling you
  • EXPLORED your triggers for the urge to eat
  • ACCEPTED your situation without judging, and
  • STRATEGIZED how to meet your true needs

Now, you take action.  Have a plan for how you will respond to non-hunger urges to eat.  This is not about willpower to not eat.  It is about your willingness to tune into yourself and take charge of your actions and take care of yourself.  Make a choice to FEAST and you will be EMPOWERED this holiday season!