A lot of people eat, maybe even binge, when they’re bored. They say it’s something to do and it’s easy. But it’s a little more than that.
In this episode, I’m talking about the more specific reason why you’re eating when you’re bored and why you’re bored in the first place. I want to help you do less eating out of boredom and to feel less bored in general. Listen in to this episode to find out how.
Hello! I’ve got some good stuff coming for you next week. I mean, I always aim to give you good stuff every week but next week I’m giving you 5 days of good stuff!
I have a free 5 day training coming for you!
That means, you’re going to have me for 5 days where I’m going to go live on Zoom each day, you can ask me all the questions you have, and you’ll learn what you need to do to stop binge eating.
Each day I will be teaching on a different topic and I’m going to pack in as much as I can. I don’t want to overwhelm you but I also want to make sure you walk away with a clear understanding of what you need to be doing in order to be successful at stopping binge eating.
You can also join our training group,which will not be on Facebook, it’s a separate platform, and you can interact with other people who binge eat and see how not alone you are in all this. You’re going to resonate with the other people and their stories and feel understood and share ideas and it’s just going to be so wonderful.
I love doing these trainings where I get to interact with you all so much.
So, the first day of the training will be on Monday July 5th 2021 and you will register for it at coachkir.com/training.
And I do want to say, even if you aren’t able to make time to watch all the trainings live, they will be recorded and the replays will be available for a limited time after the training is complete and also, even if you don’t watch all of the trainings, even if you just watch a couple, it will be better than none. You will learn something that you can start applying to your eating right away.
So join me next week coachkir.com/training and learn how you’re going to stop binge eating,
Let me break it down for you and simplify what needs to happen so you can cut through the confusion and get to work.
Alright, now let’s talk about boredom eating.
I actually had someone write a review saying they were surprised I hadn’t done an episode on boredom eating. So listener, here it is!
It really is a reason for overeating and for bingeing that comes up quite often.
You’re bored and eating is something to do. And it’s easy.
And yes, it is both of those things, let’s not deny that but, there’s a little more to it.
It’s not just something to do. It’s something pleasurable to do.
If you’re bored, you’re wanting to be entertained. You’re wanting to do something enjoyable.
Cleaning the bathroom is also something to do but you’re not choosing that.
You’re choosing to eat because it’s something you think you’ll enjoy. And you probably will.
As long as you’re not eating into a binge and being excessive.
So let’s make sure you’re seeing that you’re not just eating something because it’s a thing to do or because it’s just there, you’re expecting to get pleasure from it.
You’re not going to eat a food you don’t like just because it’s there because you won’t get pleasure from it.
But you will eat something you think will be good.
And with that, yes, eating is easy.
You open the bag or box or container of some kind and you begin.
But it’s not just easy, it’s easier.
It’s easier than other things you could do.
There are other options for things to do and even pleasurable things to do but, eating is the easiest so you choose it.
I used to make that choice way too often.
It was easier than making plans with a friend, it was easier than driving to somewhere nice by myself where I’d like to spend time, and it was easier than setting myself up to do something creative that I enjoyed doing like choreographing, song writing, or painting.
And not only was it easy but, I thought it would be more pleasurable.
So when I wanted to be entertained, I went to food.
And now that I think about it, it’s interesting to me that I wouldn’t even go to my extensive list of movies or new tv shows that I wanted to watch as my source of entertainment.
My guess is either that I thought eating was a guaranteed good time while the new movie or show could be something I didn’t like.
My other guess is that I wanted to actively do something, not just sit, and eating is an action so I considered it to be me doing something.
Especially if it involved me cooking or walking or driving to the store.
So that’s why most people eat when they’re bored.
It’s not just something to do that’s easy.
It’s something pleasurable to do that’s easier than something else that’s pleasurable.
So let’s talk about how you can make a different choice and do something else.
First there’s the idea that something else is going to take too much effort to get to the pleasure and enjoyment and that’s why you’re not choosing it. Like watching a movie is going to involve searching for something and choosing something or making plans with a friend is going to involve figuring out what to do and maybe having to call two people if the first one isn’t available or how painting is going to involve setting up the easel and the paint and the brushes and the water and a chair and then you gotta figure out what you want to paint.
So there’s that part where you have to be willing to put in the effort to get to the pleasure and enjoyment.
But there’s also you stopping yourself simply by thinking there isn’t anything to do.
That’s the thought I hear most often when people talk about eating when they’re bored.
You’re not even considering doing the things you enjoy doing. You’re just telling yourself there’s nothing to do.
Maybe this is because you don’t know what you like to do. I’ve talked about this is previous episodes and if this is you, if eating has been your go-to pleasure for a long time and you don’t know what you like to do, find one thing you might enjoy and try it.
It doesn’t have to be the most exciting thing. Just something that’s even a 5 out of 10 on the pleasure scale.
Something you think you might enjoy. Give it a go and see what you think.
But whether you have pleasurable activities that you know you enjoy or not, telling yourself there is nothing to do isn’t true.
There’s always something you can do.
Again, it may not be the most exciting but you can always find a moderate pleasure.
But when you tell yourself there’s nothing to do you’re going to feel bored.
Bored is a feeling and you’re going to create it with your thinking.
Think, “there’s nothing to do” and you’re going to feel bored.
And then you’re going to eat to avoid boredom because that’s the first place you’ve trained your brain to go.
But when you start incorporating other sources of pleasure into your life more consistently, then your brain will stop going to food as the default pleasure and start going to something else.
For example, if during the day I consistently go for walks for pleasure, my brain will go to that as an idea for something to do if I’m bored.
Or if I color in my adult coloring book regularly then that’s where my brain will go when I’m looking for something to do.
You’ve been going to food, and maybe mostly food for such a long time so that’s where your brain goes.
So stop telling yourself there’s nothing to do and instead tell yourself you’re going to find something to do. Something that’s not bingeing.
When you shift into thinking, “I will find something to do” you shift into problem solving mode and out of boredom self-pity mode.
Another thing that I see happen is that people get bored with themselves.
Boredom doesn’t just happen when you’re alone, it can happen when you’re with other people if you’re thinking you’re bored, if you’re thinking what you’re doing isn’t interesting, or if you’re thinking there’s nothing to do.
But a lot of people are so bored of themselves that once they do find themselves with time alone, they’re easily bored.
They’re not entertaining themselves with their own thoughts.
They’re not interesting themselves with their own thoughts.
They’re not exploring themselves or asking themselves powerful or even interesting questions.
So if you often find yourself being bored when you’re alone, way more than when you’re with other people, of course check your thinking about what’s possible for you to do, right, notice if you’re thinking there’s nothing to do but, also look into how you’re thinking about yourself.
Are you boring? Are you not interesting?
If you think that way, you probably won’t want to spend time with yourself and will consider time with yourself to be boring.
You can be with yourself, without doing a super exciting activity, and enjoy that time. It’s possible if you enjoy being with yourself.
Over the weekend, I went for a walk on a trail by myself and it was about an hour walk through a field and in the woods.
And I came prepared with music downloaded and podcasts downloaded figuring I’d decide what to listen to when I got there.
I did that because I thought I’d be bored if I was just walking by myself and it would be more fun if I was listening to something.
But when I started walking, I heard the birds chirping and it was such a nice sound. So I didn’t turn anything on yet. And then I had the crazy idea to just not do it until I really wanted to. Until then, I was just going to walk in silence, along with any nature sounds that may happen.
For my whole walk, I was just with myself. Well, except for the 3 minutes that I talked on the phone when someone called me. But other than that, it was just me and I wasn’t bored at anytime. I really enjoyed my own company.
I didn’t feel the need to bring any other voices into the equation and it felt good to enjoy that time with myself in that way.
Now, yes I was walking, I wasn’t just sitting there by myself I was being active but, some of you aren’t even willing to do that because you think it will be boring if you’re just with your thoughts.
But I challenge you to give it a try.
To spend some time with yourself, listening and talking with yourself.
You might find out that you’re not as boring as you think you are.
So, when you’re eating when you’re bored, you’re looking for something easy and pleasurable to do.
Prepare yourself with other options for pleasure that won’t result in you feeling like crap.
Be willing to put in some effort to do something that won’t be so easy to prepare or set up because the pay off will be greater than if you binge for entertainment.
And stop telling yourself there’s nothing to do. There’s something. Find something.
Even if that means you find entertainment or interesting thoughts in your own mind.
Now, next week, I have something for you that you will not find boring and something you can do besides eating.
Learning how to stop binge eating in my free 5 day training.
During the time when you would usually eat for enjoyment, or binge, spend that time with me.
Go to coachkir.com/training to register and you’ll get access to the community for the training, the Zoom link, and the replay link.
Until then, go cure your boredom with enjoyable things, figure out what they are, and enjoy your time with you.