Why do people overeat?
I know why I did. I was unhappy, in a bad marriage and wanted to escape my life. There were other contributing factors, but I’ll put the ones I just mentioned at the top of my list.
People overeat for many reasons and it’s not typically because they are just hungry—it’s because they are emotional. I used food to escape, hide, and numb myself from my emotions. It was like I was trapped on a speeding “numb” train with no brakes and no way off. I didn’t want to get off and have to deal with my feelings, so I stayed on. And people can watch you from the train tracks and yell at you to hit the brakes or jump off, but unless you really want to get off the train, you’re stuck on that ride.
Some people stay on the overweight train their whole lives. Others, like me, have an “aha” moment: a moment of clarity when you see something profound about yourself and it changes everything.
What was my “aha” moment? I looked in the mirror after a fight with my now ex-husband and barely recognized myself. As I looked in the mirror, time stopped and I saw this unhappy, overweight woman staring back at me. In that moment, I decided I did not want to be that woman anymore. I wanted off the train.
For me, I needed to hit rock bottom. I needed to lose almost everything to see what was truly important to me: my health and happiness. You live in your body. It’s connected to every aspect of your life. If it’s not working correctly, it impacts EVERYTHING else in your life. And my body was a reflection of everything that was not working in my life: love, health, money, home, community, and career. Everything was falling apart. In my ”aha” moment I realized I needed to clean up the mess I had created.
Now, let’s jump ahead 7 years to my life today. I got divorced, lost a total of 130 pounds, moved from LA to NY, joined an incredible community of friends, released an independent film on DVD (Truth About Kerry), sold a TV show (Mother-Up! premiering Nov 6th on Hulu), directed the Handel Group’s online digital product “Design Your Life” and became happy and healthy in my life. It all started with one moment in front of the mirror: my moment of clarity where I chose to change my life. No one convinced me. No one told me I had to. It was me. I wanted it. I made it happen.
Get a feel for how The Handel Method® could benefit you.
It sounds simple, right? You look in the mirror, see that you’re too heavy and decide to lose the weight. You start eating less and more healthfully and exercising and then, yes, you lose weight. Your whole life changes and you’re happy. Honestly, if it was that simple, EVERYONE would be thin. Surely, it must be harder than that? But I will share that it’s not as hard as you think.
First, you need your ”aha” moment. This is very important. Now, everyone’s “aha” moment is different. Obviously, my moment was deep and profound. But it’s not always like that. It’s just the moment where something clicks inside of you and the desire to be healthy and thin starts to override the desire to eat the cookies and cake. Anything can trigger this moment. Someone calls you fat. You can’t fit into your favorite jeans anymore. You boyfriend tells you he isn’t attracted to you since you put on 20 pounds. Maybe even reading this blog could be your “aha” moment.
Now, the next step is a little harder. Why? Because it’s about taking action. You have to be willing to do the work. There is no magic pill. Trust me, I dreamed of that pill for years. It doesn’t exist. You are the only one who can make it happen. But there are a few tips for how to make it happen.
First, losing weight is a team sport. I tried for years to do it on my own and failed. It wasn’t until I started working with a coach that I started to have weight loss success. You need someone to help you be accountable, like a coach or a trusted friend.
Second, I created a dream of what I wanted my body to look and feel like. Then my coach and I created a plan with promises and consequences surrounding food, diet and exercise. For the first time I was designing my life with food. AND I was setting myself up to WIN. For years, I was not kind to my body and didn’t realize how bad I felt until I switched my eating habits. Within days, I felt better. It was like I could feel my body healing. That’s when my coach and I started to look at my life and took on healing my spirit as well. We worked on the inside and the outside at the same time, ultimately healing my mind and body.
To summarize, here are the steps I followed for weight loss and what I recommend for you:
10 STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS
- You want it.
- You are willing to do the work.
- You hire a coach or find a friend for accountability.
- You write a body dream that captures what you want to achieve with your weight loss. Make sure this includes how you look and feel!
- You make food promises consistent with achieving your dream (e.g. no bread, pasta, or rice).
- You make a specific exercise promise (e.g. 4 cardios a week for 30 minutes each).
- You create self-imposed consequences so you keep your promises.
- You check in with your coach or buddy everyday – emailing your food journal and your progress.
- You share with your friends and family about your weight loss dream.
- You look at your life and deal with why you’re overeating to begin with and heal yourself emotionally.
Is it your time?