Thursday, May 16, 2013

3 ways to overcome emotional eating....

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3 ways to overcome emotional eating

Loneliness causes a kind of bad mood and stress that very often leads to emotional eating.

This was confirmed in a recent study.

Another recent study found that people who felt positive emotions often had much better social networks and health and much lower stress.

So you can avoid feeling lonely and that kind of stress to avoid that kind of stress driven eating.

But how do you do that!?

Yes.  The vigorous exercise most days of every week that produce good health and help power fat loss or not gaining extra fat DO help with that.

Taking the omega 3 supplement DHA and eating low mercury wild caught fish high in omega 3 oils also helps.

This post is about 3 strategies you can add to increase your social support and feel dramatically less lonely.

1.  Other people are in your world now.  The first step is to be aware of who they are. 

You see some people at your work.  You often see some of the same people when you shop or go to the bank. 

Even though the relationship is one way you also have many people on the radio or TV that you get to know.  The same is true of authors of nonfiction or fiction of books you read often.

And, you get to know family members and neighbors.

Remember that you DO encounter those people now! 

If doing so makes you feel good  -- and the ones you see in person begin to realize you recognize them, like them, and are you are happy to see them, you will feel far less lonely and dramatically less stressed.

And, once you master how to do that, arranging to see them more often can help.  So can simply remembering how well it went when you saw them last if you begin to feel lonely.

2.  The next step I learned from a self help author, David Schwartz.  And his strategy has been confirmed by the studies of successful marriages.

Know of reasons to like people, what you like about specific people, and what the legitimate strengths and good points are of people who know and why you like that about them.

David Schwartz suggest that before you see someone remember these real reasons you like them or when you do see them notice these things when they show up!

This even works with people who have things about them you don’t like.

Simply remember what their strengths are and the reasons why you like them for those reasons anyway.  That will help make them much more of a positive for you to interact with.

And, when you do see them that will help the interaction go well enough, it will help you feel less lonely.

Here is a personal example.  There is a manager at my local Whole Foods.  If you want her to make an exception in what she sees as official policy don’t even bother to ask her.  She will ONLY do it by the book!  That used to upset me.  Now I just ask someone else!

But as a person she is nice and friendly and recognizes me.  Even better, if I ask her help at something she sees as OK, she is extremely competent and knows the store and it gets done!

She does it or gets someone best able to help me to do it.  So, because I remember those things about her, I’m always friendly when I see her.

3.  The last part is using the study that found that experiencing positive emotions was so helpful.

How do you use THAT to be less lonely?

The strategy is a doable add-on to the last one.

To a degree you can practice feeling the way you want by focusing on the real reasons for it. This is the previous strategy.

But you can also simply turn it on like throwing a switch to a degree.  Simply practice feeling pleased and warm towards a person, let yourself feel it and hold it for a bit.

People cannot read minds – at least not the ones I know!  But social research shows they are totally accurate about two things.

a)  Is the person they see at a low energy, a higher energy productive alertness, or are they wildly energetic or stressed greatly?  Low energy, in between, or excessive energy or a very high energy state?

People read that extremely accurately if they pay attention at all.

b)  The other one is positive and negative feelings. 

People read that extremely accurately if they pay attention at all.

So when you meet someone & you see their energy level, match yours to it -- or a bit higher if theirs is too low or a bit lower if theirs is too high or too high for you.

That helps.

But the huge one is by focusing on real reasons you like and /or respect them and allowing yourself to feel warmly towards them, THEY relax and are much more comfortable with you being there.

They will be easier to communicate with and your interaction with them will help you feel far more connected and less stressed and lonely.

It does take practice! 

And, to be fair it IS easier with some people and easier with a particular person some times more than others.

But if you are lonely or feeling out of touch practicing these techniques with all these people every time you get a chance WILL make a huge difference to you.

 Even making opportunities to see people and practicing these techniques when you get good at doing them can help.

I took David Schwartz’s advice on this and practiced myself.

Doing so has dramatically improved my quality of life
and saved me from disasters not knowing how to do this would have slammed me instead –
and helped me deal well with almost everyone even people others find difficult to work with.

So I strongly recommend it to you.

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