How Building the RIGHT Gratitude Practice Silences Food Drama

October 09, 2019

 

If you’ve followed me for a while, you know that the cause of overeating and emotional eating is FEELINGS. 🍕🍫🍔

If you want more info on why that is, you can get it in my 3-Step Emotional Eating Emergency Manual.     👇👇👇

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The BIGGEST causes of overeating are feelings like stress, anxiety, overwhelm, unworthiness, and loss. 

We can’t stop those feelings from ever happening, because… life, but we can stop them from leading to overeating and emotional eating.🍕🍫🍔

In the Devour Life Academy, my clients create a daily gratitude practice as soon as we start working together. It’s a MUST HAVE ritual if you struggle with overeating or emotional eating. For anyone I work with, it’s a Daily Non-Negotiable. 

gratitude, emotional eating, journal

I suggest setting a timer on your phone for 2 minutes, and spending that time either writing down or saying out loud, everything you’re grateful for. As many things as you can think of in the 2 minutes!

To create a daily gratitude practice that WORKS, there are some really specific guidelines you need to follow.


 

What NOT to do…🛑✋🚫 

🚫 1. DON’T say you’re grateful for things you aren’t actually grateful for. 

Nix anything that feels like a “should”. You get no benefit from these kinds of gratitude statements because they’re laced with the negative feelings you’re trying to take a break from.

 I SHOULD be grateful for my new project that is overwhelming me… 

I SHOULD be grateful that my parents are coming into town even though I’m stressed about it…

I SHOULD be grateful for the temper tantrum my kid is having because he’s expressing his feelings even though it’s making me want to crawl in a hole and die.

Leave out the SHOULDS. The gratitude fairy is watching and knows it’s a lie. 🧚‍♀️

 

🚫 2. Don’t say you’re grateful for trauma or pain.

I see a lot of memes on social media these days like, 

“I’m grateful my ex broke my heart because now I’m stronger.” 

“I’m grateful I got so sick because now I appreciate life more.”

“I’m grateful for the abuse I experienced because it made me resilient.”

Even if a statement like this is true for you, DON’T use it in your gratitude practice. 

You can be grateful you’re strong and grateful that you’re resilient, and grateful that you appreciate life, yes. But leave trauma out of your gratitude practice, and instead focus on how amazing you are. 

 

🚫 3. Don’t try and use gratitude to “stuff down” or ignore feelings.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed and sad, let yourself fully feel that for a couple of minutes, and then take a break from it to do your gratitude practice.

If you allow yourself to FEEL daily negative feelings, they typically pass by in about 90 seconds, like a (painful, icky) cloud. 

We tend to be so afraid of what will happen if we allow ourselves to fully feel them. There’s fear that it’s not ok to feel that way (it is), or fear that if we start allowing ourselves to feel it, the feeling will never stop.  

But the opposite is actually true. When we allow ourselves to FULLY feel feelings like sadness, loneliness, anger, they pass through us in a healthy way. When we suppress them, we end up expressing them in unhealthy ways… like eating everything in the fridge.

Your gratitude practice is meant to help get you back into a positive mindset after fully feeling your sadness/anxiety/overwhelm. 

 

The RIGHT way! DO THIS! 👍💯🏆

✔️1. Use gratitude as a break, as a perspective shift. You’re not ignoring the bad things in your life. You’re just balancing them out with the good. 

✔️2. Use your gratitude practice when you start downward spiraling. 

If you allow yourself to feel a feeling like sadness and it goes on, and on, and on, then stop and take a break. 

That means there’s depth there that wants to be explored, but not all at once. Take a break with your gratitude practice. 

 

✔️3. Get as detailed as possible. 

The more detailed the things are you’re grateful for, the better it works. 

 

“I am grateful for my baby” is ok but… 

“I am grateful for the way my baby’s head smelled when she woke up this morning” is WAY BETTER.

“I am grateful for my husband” is ok but…

“I am grateful that my husband brought me a cup of coffee in bed this morning. It made me feel so loved” is WAY BETTER.

“I am grateful for the beauty of nature” is ok but…

“I am grateful for this maple leaf that just fell in front of me because it reminds me of fresh maple syrup I used to have at my grandma’s as a kid” is WAY BETTER.

 

✔️4. Give yourself the tingles.

Remember what your high school English teacher said and BE DESCRIPTIVE. 

 

Use feeling words and specific examples. Try to feel it in your bones. Try to make something you’re grateful for make you tingle a little. 

 

✔️5. Do it AT LEAST once per day, but several times per day if you want massive results. 

Practice in the morning, in the evening, while you’re walking the dog, while you’re falling asleep, etc. There’s no such thing as too much gratitude, and you’ll notice that it starts to really shift your perception of yourself and your life. 

It also part of the daily non-negotiable practice that I prescribe for calming food cravings. Big time. 

Build the RIGHT gratitude practice for you, make it a daily pleasurable habit, and watch your whole perspective shift and your cravings calm the eff down.

Comment below and tell me… What’s a time in your day where it makes the most sense to add in a 2-minute gratitude practice?

Xoxo,

 

 

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