The holidays are a wonderful time of the year but they can also be the most stressful.
So many demands on our time with Christmas programs, shopping and celebrations not to mention the extra demands on our budgets.
Did you know that feeling over-stressed causes us to overeat? We do it because eating is an effective way to temporarily forget about our problems. Also, refined carbohydrates have an effect on our brain similar to drugs. As you are trying to improve your health, you may find yourself “medicating” your stress with sweets and treats.
So what can you do when you feel the urge to binge? Well, there are lots of different things to do! Here are 20 activities you can do instead of grabbing those cookies or candy when you feel an overwhelming desire to eat. Before you try these suggestions, however, make a deal with yourself-that is, if you wish to have a specific food, you can have it, but only after you’ve done three things on the list below:
20 Things You Can Do Instead of Eating:
- Read a book—or your favorite fitness magazine
- Search for a Web site, on a topic that is of interest to you but that you haven’t had time to pursue
- Go for a walk
- Call or email a friend
- Write in a journal
- Go window-shopping
- Play a game with your spouse, children, or pets—whether it’s Frisbee or fetch, checkers or chess
- Do an exercise video, or hit the gym for aerobics, weightlifting, or yoga
- Tackle some household chores: dust, vacuum, balance the checkbook, etc.
- Take a long bath or shower
- Start your holiday gift list—both gifts to give, and gifts to receive
- Alphabetize your books, CDs, videotapes, spice rack…
- Do some outside chores: work in the garden, mow the lawn, rake leaves, or shovel snow
- Pray and review your list of reasons why you want to live a healthy lifestyle
- Work on a craft project that will keep your hands busy: blog, scrapbooking, painting, woodworking, etc.
- Crank up the music and clean house in a Ten Minute Tidy
- Try on old clothes—clothes that are now too big as well as clothes that are still too small
- Research healthy recipes to prepare for the coming week, and make a shopping list
- Brush your teeth, use a strong mouthwash, then pop in a piece of extra-minty gum
- Start, or add to, a scrapbook of your weight loss journey. Include photos, motivational articles, and your own thoughts and feelings
Try one or two of these and soon you will be feeling peaceful, happy and healthy.
I hope that you find these helpful. Leave me a comment with your favorite one.