Catching thoughts, changing binge eating

Apparently, we have 60,000 thoughts a day.

That’s a lot of observation, interpretation, judgement, opinion, conclusion.

And those thoughts create how we feel. And how we feel is everything.

Feelings drive what we do. Or don’t do. All of it. To feel good or to stop feeling bad. Long term or short term. If you ask ‘why’ enough times, it always comes back to a feeling.

With binge eating too. We want to feel something when we do it. Maybe relief, comfort, nurture, relaxation, escape, happiness, a moment of calm. Or we want to avoid feeling something. Stress, irritation, restlessness, loneliness, rejection, anger, overwhelm, unworthiness.

So how do we become aware of these gazillions of thoughts that cause the way we feel? That form such a key piece of the binge eating puzzle.

When I was 7, a friend of mine lived on a farm. We used to play in the summer and chase butterflies. There were so many. They were beautiful. We often caught one or two, in a net or in our hands. We couldn’t catch all the butterflies, just a few.

Thoughts are like butterflies. We can catch one or two. Take a look at them. See where they take us. Then let them go again.

One of the best ways to do this is to write down what’s in your head. Just 5 minutes with a piece of paper and a pen. Get it all out. No editing. No judgement. Keep writing continuously. If your mind goes blank, write that. Download what’s going on in your amazing human brain.

Then ‘catch’ a thought. Choose any one. It really doesn’t matter which. When you think that thought, how do you feel? Choose another. What about that one? If you don’t know, start with glad, sad, mad or bad and see if you can expand from there.

This is such deep work. Eventually, it will change everything. If you continue on the journey.

See if you can catch a thought-butterfly. What is it showing you?

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