If you're struggling with food
the act of figuring out what you are going to eat actually feels like a threat to your nervous system.
Food has been seen as the enemy or a source of stress for so long that the thought of it can trigger your fight or flight response. Your body feels like it is in some sort of danger and goes into survival mode, shutting off your digestion and ability to be present.
You have most likely felt constriction and tightness in your chest and have anxious thoughts that won’t seem to shut off.
At this point your body is very on edge and is quite literally just looking for safety.
I know this because this is exactly what would happen to me when I was really struggling with food. Going out to eat, let alone figuring out what I was going to eat, felt so overwhelming. I felt so much constriction in my body, and my thoughts were filled with fear, worry and negativity. I would be on edge and so uncomfortable.
This can be such an isolating feeling, but I want you to know if you are struggling with this, you're not alone.
A quick and efficient way to signal to your body and your nervous system that you are safe is by consciously breathing long deep belly breaths. This breathing technique signals to the body and nervous system that you are not in danger.
I came up with these 4 steps to support you in signaling to your body that you are safe and help bring you back to the present moment before you sit down to eat. *If you are with people, kindly remove yourself and go to another room until you feel ready to go back.
4 STEPS TO SIGNAL TO YOUR BODY THAT YOU ARE SAFE:
Become consciously aware of what your self-talk is like in that moment, and pinpoint where tightness is in your body.
Place one hand on your chest (or the area where you feel the tightness) and one hand on your belly. Practice deep breathing: Breathe in through the nose filling up the belly with air, hold at the top, then a long exhale out the mouth. Repeat for 1-2 minutes, or until you feel calm.
As you are breathing, repeat in your mind, “I am safe in this moment.” In doing this, you are seeing and holding space for the part of you that is activated.
Now that you have reached your calm and safe space, express gratitude for the food you are about to eat: Gratitude that the food is going to provide you with the energy you need to continue and carry out the next plan for your day.
The reason expressing gratitude is important is because by doing so repeatedly you are changing the wiring of your brain and your neural pathways.
Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley studied the effects of gratitude on the brain and the body, and it actually changes the nervous system. Each time you express and feel into gratitude your brain releases dopamine and serotonin, the “feel good” hormones, enhancing your mood immediately.
When I'm sitting down for a meal or snack a mantra that I have found supportive from Gabby Bernstein is stating, “I love my food and my food loves me.” You will feel discomfort at first, but this is the productive discomfort for growth. It’s a practice that you can actively train yourself to do. It can be hard to switch to a gratitude mindset, but I promise you, the more you do it, the more natural it becomes.
By doing this you are regulating your own nervous system and creating a safe home inside of yourself. THAT is a powerful thing that will support you in weathering any storm.
Sending you love,
If you’re struggling with your relationship with food, your body and yourself, I have a program that was made just for you. It’s everything I wish I had in my most desperate times.
✨The Ultimate Health Transformation Program is a 3-month journey designed to support you in the most radical and fulfilling transformation of your LIFE.
👏🏼It will transform your relationship with food, your body, and most importantly, your SELF.
You don’t have to struggle alone anymore. I’ve got you!