New Year's Gift

Note: To learn more about the Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating program, visit www.AmIHungry.com, or my website. I’ve written before how I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions. So this year I’m doing something different. I’m giving myself a New Year’s gift. Specifically, the gift of self-acceptance. This is something I struggle with all too often. Maybe you do, too. I have a chorus of voices in my head that chime in when I do something differently than other people. And my automatic interpretation is that different = wrong. I don’t have the same body type as someone the world reveres as beautiful? Mine must be wrong. I don’t eat the way I’m “supposed” to or the way other people think I do? Shame

Making Space for Quiet

Do you ever find that if you let yourself be still and quiet, you’re suddenly overwhelmed with sorrow or regret or loneliness or some other emotion you don’t want to feel? And do you ever keep yourself busy to avoid feeling that – maybe even using eating as a way to keep yourself occupied? I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, both because of conversations with friends and because of my reaction to a winter solstice celebration last week. It’s not that I’ve been deliberately trying to keep myself busy. But with holiday preparations – including lots of cookie baking – changes at work, and taking online classes, it adds up. When you throw in my grandfather’s death a little over a week ag

Eating a Christmas Memory

I wrote earlier about celebrating Thanksgiving without traditional foods, and how I was okay with that. But even so, I find that Christmas is different – there are some foods I don’t want to do without. I didn’t fully realize why, though, until recently. It’s not exactly about tradition, or how much I like the food. It’s about the Christmas memories. When I was a kid, Christmas was much simpler. Everyone was still alive in my family, no one was estranged, and Mom did her utmost to make it special, even when we didn’t have much money. It’s not so simple anymore. And it’s often hard this time of year, remembering all the losses, especially Mom. That’s been compounded this year by the death of

Is It a Holiday Without Special Food?

What happens if you don’t get special foods on a holiday? Does it still feel like a holiday? I started thinking about this because my Thanksgiving this year was even less traditional than usual. I know most people gather around a table that groans with the weight of the food. Turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, bread or rolls (or both), pumpkin pie, pecan pie, whipped cream, and possibly even more. But I didn’t have almost any of that. I did have some mashed potatoes, and cranberry ice cream, but that was as far as it went. It got me thinking about how we put all this emphasis on the food. But does it belong there? I did see some o

Is It Time to Eat Yet?

Do you find yourself eating simply because of the time of day? If so, what happens when you don’t know what time it is? I’ve been thinking about this since my watch battery died. I’ve been having trouble finding the right battery replacement, which means I’ve been without my watch for a week or so now. And it’s given me a strange sense of being disconnected from time. What’s also fascinating is that, more often than I expected, I’ve found myself wondering, “Is it time to eat?” To be clear, it’s not that I can’t find out what time it is. My phone has a clock. So do my home and work laptops. I have a clock on the living room wall. My stove, microwave, alarm clock and car all tell me what time

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