Binge-Proof Your Life
And at the very least, taste the food you are eating. My experience in
bingeing — whether it's on two cookies or an entire cake — is that I am so
caught up in getting the food in my mouth, I forget to taste it, to enjoy it.
And as long as you are eating, you might as well enjoy it. If bingeing is the
only time you give yourself permission to eat your favorite foods, why let the
moment pass you by without noticing the crunch of those foods? Since binges are
a way to give yourself something, let yourself receive it. The positive
by-product of this awareness is that compulsion and mindfulness cannot coexist.
Once you become aware of what you are doing, it's harder to continue with the
What if you finish every last bite or drop? What do you say to yourself, how
do you treat yourself? I have a three-word directive for coming off a binge:
Be unspeakably kind. In the empty fullness left after bingeing, the
"I can't believe you did this again, what's the matter with you, you are a
failure now and forevermore" voices sense a place to step in. And when they
do, they roar.
Don't let them. If they threaten to overtake you, imagine them, as a
therapist friend of mine says, as teeny screeching mice the size of your
thumbnail. Imagine putting them in a jar and covering it with a very strong
lid. Since their squawking can't hurt you now, treat yourself as if you were
doing your very best. Live as if you deserve to be here, regardless of what you
have just eaten. And know that every time you remind yourself that you belong
here, regardless of what you weigh, you are speaking the truth.
Geneen Roth is an international teacher, speaker, and writer of
best-selling books on emotional eating. You can visit her at
Originally published on October 1, 2008
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