How To Avoid Binge Eating On Special Occasions

I’d been waiting for this day for 3 weeks.

A month prior, I had gotten my entire house repainted. Finally, the 1970’s -style wallpaper was gone! Now I could claim my space as my own. Once it was complete, I wanted to have my friends and family over for a party to show it off.

Prepping a delicious meal with all the trimmings, I was proud of myself for eating breakfast and a light snack to keep myself from being starved when it came time for the party. As I slid the dessert in the refrigerator to chill, I licked the whipped topping from the sides of the mixing bowl. I’m a sucker for whipped topping.
6 hours later, my guests had come and gone, enjoying a lovely evening of conversation and laughter. As I was wrapping up left-overs, I lamented that it had gone so quickly. After anticipating the evening for weeks, all that remained were bowls of food and a pile of dishes to wash.

I dipped my spoon into the dessert bowl as I started to put it away. Gosh, that was tasty. Another spoonful. Yes, just as tasty as the first. Two more spoonfuls. Bite by bite, I finished off all that remained.

We often look forward to special occasions like holidays, birthdays and celebrations with expectations of joy, delight and roomfuls of laughter. But when it doesn’t turn out exactly that way, it’s easy to turn to food to squeeze out the missed pleasure.

Unfortunately, the food relief is only temporary. After the food is gone, you’re still left dealing with whatever led to eating in the first place. To top it off, now you’re beating yourself up for eating too much and feeling stuffed.

Even though you realize that will happen, it seems all to easy to repeat the habit at the next special occasion.

So, with that in mind, here’s a few tips to make it through special occasions. These take discipline, but you can find yourself feeling relaxed, entertained and proud of yourself as a result.

1. Pick out the most exciting, decadent delicious food you desire from the offerings. Put that on your plate, and then a smaller serving of the second most exciting food. Go somewhere where you can focus on the foods as you eat them, so you can truly enjoy them. Savor the bites. See if you can pick out the flavors of the different ingredients in the food. Notice the texture and temperature. As you finish, put your utensils down and take a sip of your beverage. Mingle with others, have conversation. If you still want more, go back after 5-10 minutes and repeat. Once you begin to feel full, remind yourself that you can always have food again later.

2. After you’ve eaten exactly what you want, look around the room and find delight. What are you attracted to? Whom are you attracted to? Give yourself pleasure by indulging your other senses. Maybe you listen in on a juicy conversation, pet a cat, dance or step out to look at the stars. Genuine nourishment–not just the kind on our plates–satisfies the soul. Nourish yourself in every way you can in the moment.

3. If you’re mind is obsessing over going back to eat more, gently take notice. Notice your mind wanting more when your body isn’t physically in need. By observing the urges without acting on them, you develop greater awareness of the habits that unconsciously lead you. Remind yourself you can always go out later to get your most favorite food when you’re hungry. Take initiative to change your physical state: go outside, leave the event, move into another room, stand up and start talking to someone new. By physically changing, you force your mind to change focus.

If you want to learn how to break through your habit of overeating or binge eating, my Binge Eating Breakthrough ebook is for you. You'll learn powerful tools and distinctions to be able to understand and overcome your urges to eat more than you want. You'll also learn step-by-step strategies for managing your cravings and feeling control with food.

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