I cannot even remember how many times I tried intuitive eating! For years I read blogs, several books that talked about it, and posts about those that are leading this intuitive path with food! I was so intrigued about others’ success with intuitive eating and wanted so badly to have this experience for myself! I was so tired of the “diet” cycle… starting something super strict and committing to do it 100% and then not sticking with it when I couldn’t be “perfect.” I would end up super frustrated at myself and ultimately thought something was wrong with me! I was getting SOO tired of this cycle!
I would always come back to wanting to try intuitive eating! I would read more and really focus on some of the top tips towards becoming an intuitive eater (more on this in a bit), and then I couldn’t actually do it! I would intuitively “want junk” or overeat on chocolate and this would cause even more frustration! I didn’t know how to listen to myself, or to gauge if I was full or hungry or even what I wanted to eat! This would just lead me back to starting ANOTHER diet… and there I was… stuck in this cycle.
The past few years, I was the healthiest I had been in a long time! I was using some amazing plant nutrients that helped balance the stress in my body and I finally felt less charge around this concept of “being perfect” with my food because my stress levels had changed! BUT I was still binging and feeling like I wasn’t safe around certain foods or traveling when what I ate was often out of my control! I saw many of these same patterns that I was dealing with in my own life, with my clients. I wanted to understand why it was so difficult to maintain a significant weight loss and could I help myself, and those I coached, change their relationship with food.. especially when they were on such a great track towards creating the change.
All of this led me to go back to school at the beginning of 2020 as I searched for answers! How could someone, like me, truly feel so good than completely sabotage their weekend? Their week? or longer? Why was it hard to trust our intuition? How come willpower was not enough? I wanted so badly to know these things for myself and to truly find a way I could BREAK my negative cycle with diet and binging and become an intuitive eater.
There are 10 principles of Intuitive Eating that were created by the founders of Intuitive Eating, dieticians Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch in 1995.
- Reject the Diet Mentality
- Honor Your Hunger
- Make Peace with Food
- Challenge the Food Police
- Discover the Satisfaction Factor
- Feel Your Fullness
- Cope with Your Emotions with Kindness
- Respect Your Body
- Movement-Feel the Difference
- Honor Your Health
These are beautiful principles and I love each one of them, but I did not understand how to actually apply them or how to teach someone else to either!
When I was in my life coaching program, we covered an entire lesson on Intuition. I have loved learning about it and want to share a few important things that helped me on my journey towards intuitive eating!
#1- The first place to start down an intuitive path is knowing what our intuition is and how to have it!
What is intuition? Intuition, as described by Webster is:
- Quick and ready insight
- Immediate apprehension or cognition
#2- Once we know what it is, how does it work? How do we honor that quick insight? Intuition works only when you are:
- Fully present in the moment
#3- How can we be more open and fully present in the moment? I knew that if I could connect more with my intuition, it would help me with my eating! I would be able to live all 10 principles more easily because I was already in a more intuitive state… but that intuitive voice seemed so difficult to hear and feel?
#4-I needed a tool to be able to get all the other voices out of the way… the voices that overpowered my intuition! The voices, I learned later after my schooling, were mostly my subconscious talking to me and wanting to protect me! That is one of the brain’s #1 prime directives… protection! If we try to do something new, our brain does not want to do it… it wants routine and it wants the path of least resistance!
After finishing my life coaching certification, I enrolled in my EFT and NLP certs. There is so much to say about these programs (read my other posts), but I want to just mention the most important. I learned that it was these current voices in my head that were ultimately making it hard to listen to my intuition!
I had heard about EFT tapping (tapping on specific pressure points to lower anxiety) years ago but really did not give it a chance! I was invited on a call by Brittany Watkins, who soon after became my coach and teacher, trying out her form of tapping to lower cravings and remove the desire to eat emotionally!
What happened after that call truly changed my life! I tapped on the pressure points she shared on the call, did the guided visualization, and did not have a desire for the same foods afterward that I normally binge on! It was really like the voices were quieter and I could hear for the first time, in a very long time, that I did not need to eat that food!
I continued tapping and started seeing more and more improvements, not only with food but my mood! I started craving different healthy nutrients and at different times during the month. I was able to stop eating when I was full, push my plate away and continue a conversation with my food still sitting there, have a bite of a treat and leaving the rest, and overall felt more and more… that food was just food! It was truly losing its emotional charge and I could find myself becoming more open and present in the moment! It has been such a beautiful journey.
Here are the 5 things I learned about myself using EFT tapping to connect with my intuition regarding my relationship with food:
- Tapping for as little as 60 seconds can lower stress levels and reduce cravings.
- Honoring the negative feeling or belief about yourself when you start tapping will help it release that much quicker.
- Food cravings are often connected to positive emotions! This is helpful to figure out what it is we really are wanting! We might really need a connection from someone we love that we have shared that food with.
- The more regularly you tap when you are having a desire to overeat or have stress regarding food, the more supportive your subconscious brain will support you! The brain thrives on repetitive actions.
- When I push the food away in my mind before I tap (like literally see myself push away the craving or desire to overeat), I can connect with my intuition that much faster! I feel like it truly creates that “openness” and allows me to be way more present to decide what my body needs as far as nourishment! Since intuition functions both in our brain and our body, this makes so much sense to me!
So much about this process has changed my life! I never thought I would be able to say I no longer have an eating disorder, and although there is so much more to say about tapping, how sessions work with me doing the guided visualizations and creating the change work on a subconscious level, just know its been one of the most powerful tools I have ever used!
I would love for you to try out tapping for yourself!
Click below to get access to my FREE mini-tapping course! I can’t wait for you to try it! Reach out once you do, so we can talk about your experience together!