Weight Loss at Your Fingertips!
By Ruth Stern, MA
60% of this country is overweight; even though we have every type of low fat, no fat, no carb, no taste, you name it foods. Even with all these “diet” foods, we’re still fat! In fact, we are the fattest country in the world! That’s because it isn’t the diet food that’s the answer to our agony of the bulge. Most nutritionists, addiction centers and authors will tell you the same thing; the answer to healing our food addiction problem is to deal with the underlying emotions that feed our cravings.
We know that most of us who suffer from eating addictions; eat out of loneliness, boredom, anger, fatigue and even joy. Once we know why we are overeating and learn to fill the void of our anxiety, then we can truly lose the weight. Many of you who are reading this article have probably tried one of zillions of diets out there already. Grapefruit diet? No carb or low carb diet? Atkins? Weight Watchers? Jenny Craig? Nutrisystem? Low calorie? South Beach ? They all work….for awhile. But the truth is; they will only work if you are clearing out the emotions that underlie the reasons you’re eating to begin with. It is so common to be on some form of a diet; and you’re so excited as you’re losing the weight and then one day something stressful happens or maybe you’re really upset or angry about some issue. You can’t get it out of your mind. It’s time to eat your low carb, low fat, high protein whatever diet and all you can do is say” to hell with that” . I want my cookies! And you eat your cookies and you feel so much better. That’s because, in that moment you are feeding the feelings and numbing or tranquilizing it. The sugar fills the void for the moment. But the next day, when you get on the scale and have gained back a pound or two or three, you feel guilty, angry and powerless. And you say “to hell with that” again and more cookies. And so the cycle of addiction begins and your feelings of being out of control and powerless become front and center..so you eat more cookies. And that is precisely why diets don’t work. We want a quick fix; but the only real answer to taking charge of your body, is to take charge of your emotions.
Most of us are unconscious as to why we eat. We think we’re eating that 2nd hamburger because we’re hungry. We are not aware of the feelings we’re experiencing most of the day as we’re so busy and stressed and rarely take the time to just be with ourselves. And with eating addictions, there are often deeper reasons we overeat that our even more out of awareness. I am one of those addicted cookie chocoholics that I’ve been writing about. I’ve bought tons of books on learning how to manage all of this.
And then I discovered EFT – Emotion Freedom Techniques; an energy psychology technique. EFT is based on the premise that all negative emotions create an imbalance in the energy system. By balancing the energy system; one can neutralize or eradicate negative emotions. It is based on the principles of Chinese acupuncture; but instead of needles we use our “fingertips” by tapping on certain energy or meridian points on the body. This technique sounded very odd to me and much too simple. After watching many tapes , studying hours of EFT and working with numerous clients and with myself, I began to see the miraculous way EFT can work on the human body’s energy system.
With eating addictions, we need to work on 4 areas: cravings, negative belief systems that feed the cravings, sabotage behaviors, and emotions that feed our cravings. In my own personal work, I had a most amazing result on one particular day. I had been working with sugar cravings for 2 months with some results. At that time I was over 15 pounds overweight(I am 5’1″ with a petite frame) and I could see that things would get worse if I didn’t really take charge. I started looking at family issues and how they might relate to my cravings. I began to recall my mother who was always 40-50 pounds overweight and forever struggling. And I was always skinny. As I was tapping on the points (in EFT) I began to experience deep sadness and guilt for all the years I watched my mother struggle. She would enjoy buying me something pretty and deny herself. It was hard for me to shop with her as she never treated herself; saying she was on a diet and she’d buy something later. Later never came. Around the age of 35, I no longer had a skinny body. Weight started to come on quickly as stress in my life had significantly increased. Looking at my reflection in store window one day from the side view was really shocking. I looked again to see if that was really me- the arms were fat and flabby and my stomach extended in a way that I never noticed. I was so shocked that I moved away and stepped back again into the reflection, to see if that was really me. Sadly, it was me. What the heck happened? I never realized how I was becoming my mother. I started to eat to medicate my feelings just like she did. And with the tapping, I also realized on some level I never felt comfortable in my thin nice body. I felt more guilt; as how could I have nice figure when my mother didn’t. After all the feelings came up front and center, I then tapped on recognizing how this really wasn’t my fault. It was my mother’s choice to not deal with her emotions and weigh and I didn’t have to feel guilty anymore.
Since that tapping session; my cravings for sugar have significantly reduced. It was as if I was trapped in this guilt and I had now found a way to release it. As Gary Craig; founder of EFT would say, this is truly emotional freedom and for the food addict, it is freedom to also have the body you desire and the freedom to have choices in how you eat. I can’t think of anything better, than to be emotionally free in your wonderful body, mind and soul. This is our birthright and what we completely deserve in our life. It is now my passion to teach others this truly profound technique in creating emotional breakthroughs and achieving the goals you desire.