If you’re working towards a healthier relationship with food, it’s a wonderful opportunity to discover some alternatives to binge eating…

Here’s the deal. Initially there will probably be very few things that will sound as enticing as having quality time with your binge. So this is going to take what we call at Beacon, A Beginner’s Mind.

Dr. Michelle May writes, “For a lot of people, eating becomes a way of dealing with boredom, dealing with not wanting to do something, dealing with uncomfortable emotions. When we have a repertoire of ways to take care of ourselves other than eating, we become more focused on meeting our true needs. It’s about redirecting your attention away from food and onto something else until you actually become hungry.”

May offers this incredible list of some ways you can spend your time without turning towards food:

  •     Get a massage
  •     Take a long walk
  •     Call a friend
  •     Make a list of your top reasons for getting active
  •     Dance
  •     Plan a vacation
  •     Write a thank you note
  •     Go to bed early
  •     Read a great book
  •     Write in your journal
  •     Give yourself a manicure or pedicure
  •     Plan a healthy meal for your family
  •     Surf the web
  •     Finish a project you’ve left unfinished
  •     Take your dog for a walk
  •     Feel what it is you’re actually feeling
  •     Volunteer in your community
  •     Start a new hobby
  •     Download a new show to start while exercising
  •     Meditate
  •     Start playing an instrument
  •     Buy yourself flowers
  •     Make a phone call to someone you enjoy talking to
  •     Write about something you’re proud of doing this week
  •     Clean out your junk drawer
  •     Play a game with your kids
  •     Catch up on work
  •     Look at old photographs
  •     Wash or clean out your car
  •     Plan a date night for someone special
  •     Take a hot bubble bath
  •     Check in on an elderly person in your life
  •     Fold laundry
  •     Take a nap
  •     Write a gratitude journal
  •     Complete your errands
  •     Check your email
  •     Send a birthday card
  •     Rearrange furniture
  •     Watch a candle burn
  •     Organize your photos
  •     Stretch or do yoga
  •     Straighten up your closet
  •     Do something nice for someone anonymously
  •     Take a hot shower

At first glance, this list may seem overwhelming or even straight up silly. The truth is however, if we keep using “food” as the skill to cope with uncomfortable emotions, it’s pretty darn difficult to move into a loving relationship with food, and with ourselves. So try to make a commitment to practice at least one skill each week and overtime they may start to feel more accessible to you in moments when the emotions are dialed up and urges to binge are feeling loud.

Shine Bright!


Resource:  Women’s Health Mag

Photo by Camille Brodard on Unsplash