When you look back at your childhood, are your memories peppered with food? I remember raiding my nans fridge for a ‘choosie’ as she called it; I remember Friday night chippies and Saturday morning fry ups; food being associated with happy family times and love.
The first time I remember overeating was at High School, when I’d bin my sandwiches and tuck into a bag of maltesers for lunch (sorry Mum). At aged 17, I started my first diet, and like most diets do when you stick to them, it worked. I headed off to University with my top tucked into my jeans feeling a million dollars! So why oh why did I gain 2 stone in the first 10 weeks of term and change to baggy sweaters and leggings? Why did I devour a half-frozen cheesecake until I felt sick??
It took me many years to realise that I’d gained weight as a defence mechanism. I could hide away in my room and promise myself that I’d socialise and join in more when I’d lost weight, rather than having to do it then, when I felt terrified. And so, the pattern started. I’d gain weight in times of stress – to avoid having to face the situation, then go on a diet to lose it, only to gain it all the next time I was struggling.
It was only when I was training to be a hypnotherapist that I fully understood the link between our emotions and our eating habits, why we crave unhealthy food and why those patterns can feel so hard to change. Using that knowledge, I was able to lose 2 stones and keep it off and help my clients to lose weight too.
Here are some of the things I learned:
- When we’re stressed, our brains rely on previous patterns of behaviour, and if we used to comfort eat then that’s the pattern we go back to. Reducing/ managing stress is key.
- Our brains were formed in caveman days, so we’d be rewarded with a chemical high when we hunted and ate food, as food keeps us alive. For most of us, food is readily available these days, but we still get that chemical high and craving it can lead us to overeat. There are other ways of getting the same chemical high.
- The way we talk to ourselves is key. Our brains believe what we tell ourselves. If we tell ourselves we’re a pig for example, then stuffing our faces with food matches that label. Whereas if we tell ourselves we are carrying excess weight at the moment, then that leads to healthier behaviours.
- Reaching for that donut or glass of wine when stressed is just a habit, and there are easy hacks to help you change habits. No behaviour is fixed.
- Denial doesn’t work. Telling yourself you’re not allowed chocolate only makes you want it more. Changing your language to ‘I’m choosing not to eat chocolate right now’ is much more likely to work.
Last year I was fortunate enough to meet Emily Dawes, Physical fitness and Mindset Coach at www.movewithenergymovewithmindset.co.uk We have worked together on a package that brings together the 3 pieces of the Weight Loss puzzle – mindset, food and movement.
Our Complete Weight Loss Solution gives you:
- Three, 90-minute online masterclasses, looking mindset, food, nutrition and movement
- A comprehensive workbook full of exercises, tools and strategies, and diary pages
- A hypnosis download, which will improve sleep and help keep you on track
- An exercise video showing you 4, 5-minute exercises that you can do in an ad break
- Membership of a private Facebook group, where you can get support from each other, and us
The next course starts on 10 September 2020 and is available for only £149, with an early bird offer of £129 if booked by 20 August 2020.
You can book here:
Or call me for more information on 07973914718.
The course can be run for private groups so if you have friends or colleagues who are keen to lose weight and gain back control please get in touch.
There has never been a more important time to get healthy, and together, we can do it!