Negativity in EMS

Negativity and cynicism in EMS.

It used to be the salty old medics or the parasauras’s that were so negative and cynical. Now…it’s infiltrated the next generation. I see it everyday on social and at work. 

Sitting around with co-workers and collectively complaining feels good in the moment thanks to Dopamine and frankly, it’s super easy to do. We feel like we belong. We are biologically wired to want to be part of the “heard”. If we are the outcast, it means death. 

Negativity is hard wired into our primitive brain. Our brains are constantly scanning for danger, and recalling negative events from the past in an effort to protect us. This can be useful, especially in medicine. Over time, it becomes harder and harder to keep it out of our everyday life.

Be aware of the negativity bias. This is when our brain fills in missing information about the story or situation with negativity. We all have this, but we are also capable of re-directing it. It’s ok if we don’t know the whole story. 

Cynicism is part of a defensive posture we use to protect ourselves from being hurt. When we allow this to fester, it skews our outlook. Cynics distrust everything new they see and hear, they are intolerant of new ideas, and they are pessimistic about everything.

I’m not saying that I’m perfect at this either. But, I did have a major shift in my attitude about 5 years ago and it has made all the difference in the world!

Why do I want to talk about this? Why does it really matter? I mean, there are probably more important things to work on right now? Right?? 

Wrong. It is very important to talk about this because negativity, cynicism, and complaining erode your well being. YOUR WELL BEING.  

Your well being is UP TO YOU. Yes, you. 

Here’s the problem with all the negativity, complaining and cynicism. It makes you feel like ass. Your brain does not like feeling like this. Our primitive brains are driven to avoid pain….even emotional pain. Irritation. Frustration. Anger. Disappointment. Judgement. Fear. All feel like pain. 

Your brain will then do what brains do and find a way to feel better. 

What’s the quickest, most efficient way to feel better??  False pleasure, which is highly concentrate natural pleasure. Whats the difference between the two? False pleasure has net negative consequences. We get way bigger hits of Dopamine with false pleasures.

Here are examples of false pleasures:

  • Snacks. All packaged foods, including beverages. If it’s mostly sugar and flour, it’s a false pleasure food. 
  • Alcohol
  • Social Media
  • Netflix
  • Gaming & gambling
  • Porn

What are the net negative consequences?

Weight gain. Dependance. Addiction. Loneliness. Depression. Divorce. Disconnection. Financial problems. And, a whole host of medical problems including inflammation, hormone disruption, hypertension, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes to name a few.

The more we feel like shit, the more complaining we do, and the more negative we become. This is the negative loop we get stuck in, which feels impossible to get out of!!

What is the solution?  How do you stop this negative spin cycle??

  1. Awareness. Are you the negative Nancy, pessimistic Patty? Cynical Cindy of your base?  It’s ok if you are. This does not mean you are a bad person. It’s your brain doing what brains do.  Start paying attention and noting when you are being negative, complaining, or cynical. See if in that moment you can admit that to yourself.  A great question to ask yourself is “is this they type of person I want to be?” “Is this how I want to show up?”
  2. Reframing your ANTS…..automatic negative thoughts. With curiously and non-judgement…..Ask yourself “what else could be going on?” “What is a different way to look at this situation” “What else could be true?”.  Example: You give report to the receiving RN and they are super short and snarky. You then complain the whole way back to base about how rude the nurse was, you take it personally.  Instead, be curious. I wonder why they were do short and snarky with me? I know the ER was slammed, maybe they were feeling rushed and I was being really long winded. Maybe this is their third patient in an hour. Maybe they didn’t get a break yet and are very hungry. I wonder if I did something rude? I guess I did snap at them when they said something about the “ride” over here….
  3. EAT…Equal Air Time. I love this concept and I find it very useful in my everyday life. This is intentional thinking and observation. This will take time to develop. If you are going to spend time on the negative, you have to spend just as much time on the positive. Now, this not gonna be easy and might not go over well with your co-workers…especially if you are talking about leadership.  Start with the easy stuff. Hey, nice job on that IV, it looked like it was a tough one. Great job on your report. Giving compliments is an easy way to do this. Whether we give them to others, or ourselves. A compliment a day keeps the negativity at bay!!  You can find the good and the positive in the world if you intentionally look for it. 

When you start to practice these things, you will notice a slight shift. Keep going. Eventually it will get much easier. You’ll notice the negativity much more in the people around you. Don’t try to change them (unless they ask you to), be the example to them. 

If you have questions, send me a DM. 

xo. Valerie

PS. If you are NOT in the All EMS Women private, female only FB group, click the “join Now” button below to join 

How to live Well in EMS

Wellness

I’m going to dive deep into Well Being and Wellness this week. Today, I’ll show you one way you can start living Well today.

What does Well Being mean?  According to the dictionary it means to be happy, healthy, or prosperous.  I don’t love that definition.  

Wellness is the quality or state of being in good health especially as an actively sought goal.  Again, not a big fan.

Happiness, and health don’t just happen magically.  They both require work. You can be happy and not well.  The two really are not related.  Wellness does not equal happiness.

But, what is this “Wellness” or state of “Well Being” that many of us are after and how do we get there?

For me, I’m looking to feel well in my body. Less aches and pains. Rested. Energized. Clear headed. Movement with ease. Less stress and overwhelm. Lab results in “normal” limits. Weight with in a range according to my height and age.

We don’t ever arrive at this “perfect” state either.  It will always be a work in progress.  There is no Wellness destination.  It is…and I cringe saying this…a “lifestyle”.  

Living a life of Wellness means you are actively living your life to be well.  In order to do that, you have to make a lot of decisions. Not all those decisions will feel fun and pleasurable either.  That is part of the deal.  

  • Why do we expect to feel well when we don’t eat well?  
  • Why do we expect to feel strong when we don’t actively work at getting stronger?  
  • Why do we expect to feel rested when we don’t actively work on improving our quantity and quality of sleep?

Because we want a well body to be easy and effortless. We receive messages all the time via media that suggests that it is.  

The real question is why don’t we do what what needs to be done to be well?

Your limbic brain. It’s default it to choose pleasure over pain. Comfort over discomfort. Habits over new desired habits.

Our limbic brain, or the Primitive Brain is our “auto pilot” brain. This the brain the drives most of us. Its goal is to seek pleasure, avoid pain and be efficient.  It can only think about the current moment. It wants the instant gratification right now.

The Pre Frontal Cortex is the part of our brain that can think about our future. It’s the planner. The cognitive thinker.  It is capable of delaying instant gratification for long term satisfaction.

If we are seeking to live a well life, we need to be living that life with our pre frontal cortex…NOT the primitive brain.

We have to stop expecting ourselves to make the best decision on auto pilot.  It’s not gonna happen. 

Your primitive brain will never just choose not to eat cookies.  It will always want the cookies. They will give us pleasure.

Living a life striving to be well, means we have to live intentionally.  Not on default.

We have to plan what we will eat ahead of time with our pre frontal cortex, not our primitive brain.

We have to schedule our workouts and do it, even when we don’t feel like doing it.

Remind yourself in those times of “not wanting to”, or “not feeling like it”, that you made that decision with your intention in mind. Don’t let your primitive brain run your life.  It just wants to sit on the couch, watch Netflix and eat snacks all day.

Tough love coming in hot….stop blaming your EMS life for your lack of Wellness.  

This was a huge struggle for me.  I was convinced that if I didn’t work in EMS, my health would be so much better.  I would not have gained so much weight.  It’s totally not true.  I have my same brain. No matter where I work.  Does our EMS life add a layer of complexity? Yes. But, it’s totally doable. It just requires more pre frontal planning. 

You can do this.  Despite your work schedule. You CAN be well and work EMS.

Wellness comes from intention and action.

xo.  Valerie
PS.  Have you joined my communities?
For EMS Well Being & Weight Loss click here.  
For ALL EMS WOMEN click HERE.

PPS. Never miss a message from me! I’m working on a ton of amazing stuff you are for sure not going to want to miss out on. I send about two emails per week. One really short one every Monday, and a slightly longer one later in the week! Sign up by clicking HERE.

Feeling Less

Feeling Less vs Feeling better

Listen up EMS….your goal should not be to feel less stress.⁠

You are going to feel that way because of the jobs we do. ⁠

The goal is to learn how to process your stress in a way that does not create MORE stress.⁠

We try to feel less stress by distracting ourselves from it. Eating, drinking, shopping, TV watching, gambling, porn…this does not make you feel less stress. ⁠

The problem is that in the moments we are distracting ourselves from the stress, we feel good thanks to thinking about the food/ETOH, etc and the dopamine hit we get from doing those things. ⁠

Your feeling of stress will wait for you. It always does. Now, you’ve just compounded your stress. And, you feel worse. ⁠

Look, I’ve been there, hell, I still go there. I get it. It still is not the solution to the stress.⁠

Just being aware that this is going on is super helpful. Pay attention.⁠

xo. Valerie⁠

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

10-22

val in safety vest
10-22⁠
Who know’s that 10 code? ⁠
I know 10-22 as cancel. Some of the best words we can hear on the job….you can cancel! ⁠
In other words, you don’t need to respond.⁠
This is also an option in other areas of your life! ⁠
You actually don’t have to respond to emails, text messages, comments on social or IRL.⁠
I learned a new tool the other day, and I’m putting a spin on it…meet the 10-22 habit. The learned and practiced habit of NOT RESPONDING.⁠
Not everything in this world needs your attention, comment, or response. Your life could dramatically improve if you add the 10-22 habit to your daily practice.⁠
See some nasty comment on your social feed? 10-22.⁠
Your brain offers a suggestion of a snack….10-22.⁠
Fellow driver cuts you off? 10-22.⁠
The act of not responding is for your benefit…not theirs. When you get all spun up, YOU suffer. Not “them”.⁠
Try it. Tell me how it feels 🙂
Have a great week! xoxo. Valerie⁠

 

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Hello There…

Hello There!

Well Hello there!⁠

In case you’re new around here I wanted to take a minute and tell you a bit about me and how I got here. ⁠

I’m going to do it EMS Report style with my favorite format…VOMIT…⁠

V= Vitals…Flight Paramedic. Married. Three kids. Coach. Blogger.⁠

O= Origin..West/Central Wisconsin, originally from Minnesota⁠

M= Mechanism…married. divorced. moved. married. 3 kids in 4 years. 100# weight gain. two knee surgeries. sick all of the time. hot mess express (aka hormones).⁠

I= Interventions…hired a Life Coach, hot yoga, meditation, walking.⁠

T= Treatments…coaching, reduced sugar and flour, limited ETOH, listen to my bodies signals, mindset upgrade, stress reduction, sleep improvement, and increased water intake ⁠

The result of this HARD work? Down 50#, completely new attitude, feeling better than I have in two decades, became a Certified Life and Weight Loss Coach and started my own Coaching practice and helping other EMS professionals improve their Well Being and Lose Weight!⁠

To grab a copy of a Free Training on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS, click the blue button below!

xoxo. Valerie

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Fear

Valerie Bestland Before & After

Stop waiting for the perfect time to go after a goal.⁠

Waiting for “Perfect” is just another way to say you are afraid.⁠

That’s ok, just be honest with yourself.⁠

Being afraid holds us back from living into our full potential. ⁠

A few quotes I love (not sure who they are from)⁠
feel the fear and do it anyway” ⁠
“You can do it afraid”⁠
“fear does not mean stop”⁠
“fear is just a vibration in your body, it can’t harm you”⁠

And, my own quote “what is the difference between fear and excitement? A thought”⁠

🤯🤯🤯🤯🤯

I was so afraid to “try” to lose weight again. I had wasted so much money and time on all the BS “diets” out there. ⁠

It was humiliating to gain and lose, gain and lose over and over again.⁠

One day, I had enough and pressed “complete order” and signed up for a coaching program. I have never regretted it.

Sure, my weight has gone up and down. But what I know now, is the REAL reason why I gain and lose weight. ⁠

It’s not from the foods I eat or don’t eat…the work outs I do or don’t do..It begins with a Thought.⁠

How we THINK determines the RESULTS we get.⁠

Send me a DM if you are ready to feel the fear and sign up for my Weight Loss & Well-Being Coaching program. ⁠

xox. Valerie⁠

PS. Check out a FREE training I created just for those of us in EMS.  Click the blue button below to watch the video.

Cinco de Mayo

Margarita
Cinco de Mayo
 
I have spent many years using this day as an EXCUSE to OVERinduldge.
 
Now, since paving my path to permanent weight loss I approach this day as an EXCEPTION in my eating protocol which has been well planned out ahead of time.
 
As a weight loss coach, one of the fundamentals I teach is something called Pre-Frontal Planning.
 
This means we use our Pre-Frontal Cortex to plan what we will eat and drink ahead of time. NOT in the moment with our Primitive Brain.
 
Why does this matter?
 
Most of us live our life by making decisions from our Primitive Brain: I want it NOW. Instant satisfaction. MORE, MORE, MORE. It’s like the devil on your shoulder whispering in your ear…”you totally deserve that drink today. You worked hard. Go ahead, have it.” Living from and making decisions from the Primitive Brain feels good in the moment. Unfortunately, it can’t predict how you will feel LATER.
 
It can’t foresee that pleasure from OVEReating now will result in weight gain LATER.
 
Pre-Frontal Planning is using the part of our brain that can predict the future consequences of decisions. If…then… If I drink now, then I will feel terrible later.
 
If I OVEReat I will see an increase on the scale.
 
When we plan our food and drink ahead of time, we do so with our future in mind.
 
We can make decisions based on our LONG term goals, which will feel amazing.

 

  • I have decided that I will have two Margaritas today.
  • I have decided that I will have homemade chips, salsa and guacamole today.
  • I have decided that I will eat baked Mexican chicken casserole today.
  • I will stop eating when I feel just satisfied. Not full.
  • I will not overeat.
 
I also make this exception knowing that I might now see the scale go down this week.
 
I’m ok with that. This is the EXCEPTION not my daily RULE.
One last thing….don’t think for a SECOND that this is EASY.
 
Our Primitive Brains are what evolved the humans.
 
It will not sit quietly while I eat chips and salsa and wash it down with a drink.
 
I’m ok now sitting with that feeling of wanting more and not having it.
 
This takes a ton of practice and failure.
 
Happy Cinco de Mayo!
 
xo. Val

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

What is Possible?

What is possible is up to you

Do you spend time thinking about why things are “impossible” for you?⁠
.⁠
What if you started think about what could be possible?⁠
.⁠
I know this for sure, it feels a hell of a lot better than thinking about impossibility!⁠
.⁠
Impossible is only TEMPORARY when you focus on what is possible.⁠
.⁠
Start by never saying these words again “it’s impossible for me to lose weight right now”.⁠
.⁠
Reframe it with “it could be POSSIBLE for me to lose weight right now”⁠
.⁠
Practice thinking that thought, on purpose, many times per day.⁠
.⁠
See what happens.⁠
.⁠
What is possible for you is totally up to YOU.⁠
.⁠
Have a lovely weekend.⁠
.⁠
xo. Valerie⁠

PS. if you are ready to take the next step, click below to book a free consult phone call with me!

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Stay Well EMS

Stay Well EMS

Good morning!⁠

As many of us head in to work this morning I want you to think about how you can stay well while on Duty.⁠

What would that look like for you?⁠

Are you willing to put your brain to work and figure out how to drink a few extra bottles of water today?⁠

What about deciding to only eat when you are hungry and stop when you feel satisfied…not full?⁠

How can you move you move your body while not on a call?⁠

What about when you feel the stress building up while en route to a trauma? Can you take 4 slow very deep breaths? ⁠

If you do have a bad trauma and you are feeling especially stressed when you clear the hospital (and your not driving!) pull out your phone and play a game on your phone for a few min.⁠

I know these things seem small and don’t seem like they matter, but my friends, they do. ⁠

Taking care of ourselves during this pandemic is critical.⁠

Have a safe day.⁠

xo. Val⁠

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.


Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

These boots….

These boots…⁠

Duty boots are our foundation. ⁠

They carry us and support us on every call.⁠

Boots are strong and rugged on the outside. ⁠

They protect us.⁠

But, our boots can get worn down. ⁠

If we are in our boots more than we are out of our boots it will take a tool on them.⁠

We can extend the life of our boots by taking really good care of them.⁠

Would you take better care of your boots if you knew you only got one pair for your entire career?⁠

What would you do different from what you are doing now?⁠

No matter the circumstances you put those boots through, how they look is entirely up to you.⁠

Your boots are YOU.⁠

Do you see it??⁠

Taking impeccable care of ourselves is in our own hands.⁠

Self Care is not Selfish….it’s necessary.⁠

Go polish those boots on your next shift!!⁠

xoxo.⁠

Valerie⁠

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Everyone Needs a Life Coach…here’s why * Video*

Do you need a Life Coach?

I just heard the greatest quote….“We used to think cell phones were optional, now, we can’t imagine our lives with out them.  The same goes for Life Coaching.  Everyone needs one, you need to find one that resonates with you”

EMS….we especially need a Life Coach!  

What we see and experience is not normal.  

Our Schedule is not normal.

Our Sleep is not normal.

The Problem is we believe that the cause of our suffering is the job.  

The job is not causing your suffering. 

The job is a Circumstance.  Circumstances are neutral.  Not good.  Not bad.

What causes our suffering is our Thoughts about the job.  

I help people become aware of their thoughts.  Think about their thoughts, and decide if they want to keep those thoughts.

When our job is the villain, we are the victim and we feel helpless.

If you want to feel better about your job, find a Life Coach.

Coaching is an affordable investment in your Well-Beling.  

Why wait to feel better?

xo.  Valerie-Life & Weight Loss Coach for EMS/HEMS

Wakefulness

In my previous blog, I talked a bit about sleep.

This week, it’s all about wakefulness.

Looking at the above image, where are you right now as far as wakefulness?

When we wake and sleep are controlled by neurotransmitters in our brains.  It’s a very complicated process with many factors.  Which can make it a challenge for those of us in EMS/HEMS.  If you are anything like me, you are not willing to give up this career to have a great circadian rhythm!  

With this idea of not wanting to give up the job, we have learn how to manage the physical sensation of fatigue, the emotional feelings of exhaustion, tiredness, and all the drama that goes with an irregular schedule and shift work.  This was a completely new “concept” for me to wrap my brain around when I got my first life coach.  I thought she was crazy, I mean, what in the hell “did she know” about my job.  

I have had to learn how to adapt a sleep & wake routine that fit with my HEMS life.  Once I started to figure out how to do this, my weight really started to change.  Yes, a part of my initial weight loss was due to food changes I made, but my attitude, mindset, overall wellbeing changed because of the work I did around sleeping & waking.

Here are some of the things I have learned along the way.  If you like them and want to try them, cool and if you don’t, that’s cool too.  Trust me, I won’t lose any sleep over it.  LOL.

  • Get up when the alarm goes off.  Stop hitting the snooze button for 35 min.  Either set it later to give yourself more restful sleep or really get up when it goes off.  There is a term for snooze-button-hitters…drockling.    Try this 90 min snooze hack….set two alarms.  Set one alarm for the time you must get up and the other one 90 min BEFORE that.  The theory is, that when the first alarm goes off, you shut it off and go back to sleep for 90ish min, which is enough time to allow for one final sleep cycle and you will feel less tired when you wake up, vs waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle.  
  • Planning…here I go again with all the planning chatter.  The more decisions you can make ahead of time with your pre-frontal cortex the better.  Listen, you don’t want your primitive brain running the program (aka your life).  If you want to get up in the morning and go for a walk or go work out, set out your clothes the night before.  Pack your work bag and food the night before.  Even though planning takes time, it will save you so much time on the other side and you will have to make less decisions in the moment.
  • Drink water right when you get up…even before coffee.  Dehydration causes fatigue.  Make sure you stay hydrated throughout  the day.  
  • Caffeine, but a limited amount and only during a short window.  Caffeine blocks the accumulation of adenosine, which causes sleep pressure.  If you want to get that vital restorative sleep, you can’t be chugging caffeine around the clock.    
  • Let the light in.  Sunlight stops the production of melatonin and resets the  circadian rhythm.  
  • Do some gentle stretching…don’t freak out and think I’m suggesting a full on yoga-flow…the reason why this is good is, because (you may not know this) your body is paralyzed during REM sleep.  Only your eyes move.  Fascinating, I know.
  • Get outside and get some sunlight & fresh air on your beautiful face.  Sunlight increases serotonin production, which is a mood boosting hormone!  Even a 10 min walk is beneficial.  
  • A cardio workout is also a great way to boost your energy and you will sleep better!  
  • Make your bed, I know this sounds silly, but this is something I personally worked on for an entire YEAR.  I never made my bed when I was a kid and that carried with me until my mid 40’s!  Most days I don’t feel like making the bed, but I do it anyways because I discovered that I love getting into a made bed MORE than I like not making it.  Making your bed gets you up, moving, and stretching.
  • Crank the tunes.  Pop in your AirPods and listen to up beat music.  My latest favs are Courage by P!NK, Good as Hell by Lizzo, The Git UP by Blanco Brown (my kids HATE that I listen to this song, but, it makes me want to sing and dance!), and Somewhere I Belong by LINKIN PARK.
  • Conversation is another way to shake off feeling drowsy. Nothing gets people more fired up than chatting about something they are passionate about!
  • Your mindset is also important here.  If you are constantly thinking and telling everyone around you how “tired” you are…guess what my friend?  You’re gonna feel TIRED.  And you won’t have any energy. You think this is just semantics, it’s not.  Your thoughts create how you feel. Here are a few thoughts that might get ya goin…”Today is gonna be FUN”, “I love taking care of people”, “I’m looking forward to ___ today”.

Try a few of these things out, see if they can help you wake up and be more alert. Or don’t. Totally up to you!  Again, it’s not gonna keep me up if you don’t.  😉

Talk soon!

xo.  Valerie

PS. We are nearing the end of a century.  Let’s start making this the century you lose the weight for good.  Click the button below to send me a DM on Facebook.

PPS. Are you in my closed FB group?  Come join, it will be fun! 

Catch the replay of a FB Live I did on Wakefulness!

Hunger part 2

Hunger part 2

Last week I went over the physical sensations of hunger, this week I’ll talk about the emotions of hunger.

I see you…rolling your eyes at the mere idea of talking about emotions/feelings and how it could possibly be related to Weight Loss!!  Stay with me though.  This is really important.  

In the following paragraphs I will use the words emotions and feelings interchangeably. 

How we FEEL will determine the ACTIONS we take. 

This is really good to know because if we want to change our actions (ie. overeating, overdrinking, overspending, etc.) we will need to become aware of how we are feeling. 

So, where do our feelings come from anyways?

I want you to stop for a second and really try to think about this.  Why do we feel motivated? Stressed? Sad? Happy? Committed? Valuable?

Feelings come from our thoughts.

What??  This was news to me. 

Ok, so back to hunger…the emotional kind.

Remember, there is also the sensation of hunger.  That starts in your body and travels to your brain….thanks to hormones.

Emotional hunger starts in the brain and travels to your body.  

It might sound like this “ooh, that strawberry pie looks really good”.   Now you are feeling desire.  What type of action does desire produce? Usually the action of eating the pie.  Even if you are not feeling the sensation of hunger.  

When we are constantly thinking about food, watching cooking shows, reading food blogs, or trolling Pinterest for new and amazing recipes this makes us feel desire, excitement, anticipation, and wanting of food.  Next thing we know, we are eating…grabbing a snack.

Ever notice that you eat when you are bored?  We are not really hungry, we are just looking for something to do, or are avoiding something. 

This my friend, is emotional eating.

We have never learned or been taught how to deal with negative emotions.  Many of us think that if we feel negative emotion, something has gone wrong.  We are doing something wrong.  There must be negative emotion so we can notice the contrast of positive emotion.

Our primitive brains like to deal with negative emotion by using things outside of us to feel better.  I call this buffering.  We use food, usually highly processed foods that contain sugar and flour or alcohol to feel better.  How does this make us feel better?  

It is a distraction from how we are currently feeling.  And, we get a hit of dopamine.  So, our primitive brain creates a neural pathway for this behavior and we repeat it over and over and over.  Soon, it becomes so ingrained that it feels automatic.

But, the truth is, it only makes us feel better temporarily.   And the cycle continues. 

So, what is the solution?

Learn to experience negative emotions with out using food or alcohol.

Now, I’m not going to lie and tell you that this feels amazing.  It doesn’t.  It feels like ass.

It gets easier over time, but negative emotion will still continue to show up and that’s ok.  We need to experience negative so we can feel how great the positive is.

I teach my clients how to experience negative emotions.

  • We allow urges and not give in to them.  
  • We name the negative emotions. 
  • We learn to identify where we feel them in our body.  
  • We practice feeling instead of avoiding, resisting and reacting to negative emotion.

Imagine if you stopped using food and alcohol to feel better.  

This is part of the journey to permeant weight loss.

If you would like me to help guide you, please click on the blue “Learn More” button below.  This will take you to my booking calendar where you can schedule and FREE call with me to learn what I have to offer.  I promise I won’t be all weird and salesy.  I have been where you are, and I want to help as many people as I can without any gimmicks or quick fixes.

Have a safe week!

xo.  Valerie