The season of graduations, weddings, family reunions, and outdoor parties is upon us! We're one week away from Memorial Day weekend and the start of our summer activities -- which means out opportunities to eat are going to be increasing (how is that even possible?!)
So it's time to pull out that journal and start paying attention -- which in this case means actually writing down every time you eat. Focus on those times you find yourself eating when you are not physically hungry. You'll know this is the case if the hunger sensation you feel is localized in your chest, your mouth or there really is no hunger sensation at all.
Physical hunger should be localized in your stomach -- it may feel growly, hollow, empty, etc. But for most people, there is a sense of physical emptiness. (versus a craving where something sounds so good to you but there is no emptiness in your stomach).
Click back over to the page where we talked about 456 on the Hunger/Fullness scale. 456 is trigger eating -- eating in reaction to something other than physical hunger. The clock telling you it's time to eat. Stress eating. Eating because it's the time your spouse likes to eat. Someone hands you a piece of something and you eat it because it's there. --all of these are trigger eating. You're not hungry -- you're just eating.
All of the festivities listed above lend themselves to trigger eating -- the food is there so therefore you eat.
If you start journalling now, you have time to increase your mindfulness of what typically triggers you to take in more calories than you intend. But to do this, you're going to need to take the time to JOURNAL when you eat and use the Hunger/Fullness scale to assess how hungry you were when you started eating and how full you were when you finished.
The whole weekend exercise is to get you feeling and understanding your behavior and then seeing it on paper so you can look for patterns. The writing it out is critical for success in this process!
There's time to prepare yourself for all the fun activities you have this summer -- but you need to start now.