Emotional Eating, A Challenge That’s Hard to Overcome (but you can!)

If I am frustrated, angry, bored, or happy, I am also hungry. It’s been this way for my whole life.

I’ve learned how to eat in response to emotions without overeating.

I’ve also learned how to work through some emotions.

I feel them, they are less overwhelming than I thought they would be and eventually they lose their grip on me. If I don’t start eating right away in response to an emotion, I can let it pass and move on without the need for food.

Sometimes a strong emotion comes in handy. I want to eat and I don’t want to be responsible for eating. I want to eat and have a good excuse for just eating without monitoring. Emotional upsets actually can come in handy for that.
Today when I was getting out of my kayak I experienced a devastating event!

I tried to paddle over to the sandbar with my daughter and her two boys. I had the two-and-a-half-year-old kayak veteran. We have made many successful trips together. She had the one-year-old novice. It was his first time in a life vest and in a kayak.

He squawked up such a storm that the life vest came off. This kid can squawk up a storm like nobody’s business and although he weighs only about 25 pounds he is all muscle and ridiculously strong!

This baby is a lot more accepting of the stiff, rubber, straightjacket. Please don't think that my daughter or I took the baby's safety lightly. He was squirming and flailing and way more dangerous to himself and the stability of the kayak with the life vest on. The water was shallow and there was no way my daughter or I would let that baby fall into the water. We did the right and logical thing under the circumstances.

This baby is a lot more accepting of the stiff, rubber, straightjacket. Please don’t think that my daughter or I took the baby’s safety lightly. He was squirming and flailing and way more dangerous to himself and the stability of the kayak with the life vest on. The water was shallow and there was no way my daughter or I would let that baby fall into the water. We did the right and logical thing under the circumstances.

Then he kept flailing wildly and trying to climb up my daughter’s chest while she tried to paddle. He looked like he thought he could bale out of the boat right there in the middle of the cove. It was low tide, the water was about 2′ deep, but it was still nerve wracking (and kayak rocking!)

We ditched the plans and headed back for the dock.

As I was exiting the kayak I heard a plunk. It was my iPhone. It landed in the two feet of water amongst the yucky clam mucky mud and gooey green seaweed.
Nobody wants to see her iPhone in the water but it's extra bad when it's lying on mucky mud and gooey green seaweed!

Nobody wants to see her iPhone in the water but it’s extra bad when it’s saltwater and it’s lying on mucky mud and gooey green seaweed!

My first thought was something I can’t write here.

My second thought was, “Let’s go to the Olive Garden! I’m not even going to ask for my salad dressing on the side.”

By the time we got there, the emotions were steady again and the menu seemed way less appetizing in person than it had in my imagination, when I was putting my phone into a bag of long grain and wild rice. I didn’t have any plain white rice so I hope what I did have is just as absorbent!

I ordered eggplant parm and salad with dressing. Salad greens get soggy with too much dressing. I discovered I really hate to eat a salad dripping in dressing. It was gross, so I didn’t finish it.

I reached for a hot breadstick.

When did these things get so bland and greasy?

When did these things get so bland and greasy?

They were greasy on top and tasteless in the middle. How come I used to think they were so good that I wanted to eat them all and then ask for another basket? Have the breadsticks changed or have I?

My eggplant parm was a reasonable sized portion with about 1/2 cup of pasta and marinara sauce served on the side. I ate the two slices of eggplant and was full before I finished the pasta.

I left the Olive Garden feeling pretty happy.

I could see that I have made changes in how and what I eat that are satisfying. I prefer them over the way I used to eat.

Then I thought about my phone.
I don't know if this long grain rice is as absorbent as the white kind! MAybe white rice is better than brown for some things!

I don’t know if this long grain rice is as absorbent as the white kind! Maybe white rice is better than brown for some things!

Even if it dries out and works again, it was a saltwater bath! There’s a real good chance it will corrode and the iPhone 6 won’t be on the market until the fall some time.

When I started to write this I wasn’t very happy and the Easter candy leftover was starting to sound like a good way to get over the raw emotions of a busted phone!
The feeling has passed and I discovered writing this blog was a much better way to accept that my phone – THAT ISN’T BACKED UP – might be permanently out of order!

 

Jackie Conn

About Jackie Conn

Jackie Conn is the general manager of Weight Watchers of Maine. She is married and has four grown daughters and four grandchildren. Her experience with her own weight management journey and raising girls has given her insight into the struggles families face with weight, healthy body image, food and physical activity. She has been a regular guest on Channel 5 WABI news for more than ten years and appears monthly as a guest on FOX network morning program Good Day Maine.