3 Hacks to Emotional Eating: How Lack of Focus Puts More Food In Your Gut


You have just punched out of the job you have no passion for and now you are a free man to do whatever you want. Life strikes you with many options and indeed, life has many.

Your options are heading to a bar for a few drinks and pee that entire day out, heading home and crash on that couch having some junk food and poop the workday instead; or simply just go home, cook some healthy food and pretend you are a happy person.

Now this is not an article about how doing a job you hate makes you fatter, but I am sure you can relate somehow. If it’s not the routine job, it’s something else that stresses you out. You name it. And you find refuge in “comfort food”.

Now this is a critical moment. If you do not focus and think about what you WANT to do instead of what you USUALLY do, you are going to fall victim to your autopilot and get to do things that you think you want but you really don’t. This is a moment you should stop, think and reflect. Look deep inside and find out what a “full you” would actually say about this moment, when it passes.

Almost every single survey shows that what people want is to “get fit” or “lose weight” and your “full you” is most probably one of them. So, why “what you want” changes when you are done with a stressful daily routine like working and you are finally given the liberty of a choice?

The answer is not a surprise, it’s emotional eating in action. It’s the kind of eating that makes you feel guilty when you have swallowed the last piece. And it hits more people than you ever thought, research shows.


This moment of choice is a tipping point and even though you think you can let it slide because it’s just one time, let me tell you that it’s one time too many. It’s a dictatorship monster that is eating up your choices and leaves you with a hypnotized option that was not really yours.

When you master this moment, you have mastered your weight loss journey. You have become a true free man or woman, having the final say to how you should feel and look. This is far beyond counting calories or arranging meals; this is your freewill in test.

Now, if you want to defeat this monster you have to have a plan. After all they say “if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail”, and true that! But how can you prepare for that?

1. Always Head Home, Game Is Better Fought On Home Soil.

In respect of going to a restaurant or a bar after a hectic day, make going home your “natural choice” no matter what. That doesn’t necessarily mean you are choosing to eat a healthy or an unhealthy meal at home, but just going home is a good place to start.

2. Prepare A Delicious Guilt-Free Meal At Home Before Leaving To Work.

Once you are home, you are very hungry and the emotional eating monster raises its hand again, mac ‘n’ cheese, it yells. Now the logistics are different. The real “comfort food” that bowl of delicious, quick and guilt-free food in your fridge ready to get microwaved, not the fatty guilty dish the monster is demanding you to stand up and prepare in the kitchen.

3. Write Sticky Notes On Your Fridge When You’re Full.

We all have that “I would tell my younger self…” feeling sometimes. The reason why you would tell your younger self things is that you feel like you have learned things now that you didn’t know back then. Same applies to your Full Self. You have much to tell Hungry You, and Hungry You should listen.

My most effective sticky note I wrote myself was “fit is better than food”. It was my personal motto when I was 97KG/214lbs.

I wrote around 10 notes and stuck them everywhere, and took one with me to work. I would stick that at my desk, I would take it to the workplace canteen and stick it on my serving tray. I had one in my wallet stuck to my debit card in case I accidentally end up with a friend at a cafe or a restaurant.

Nothing is more important and resounding than your own words. Carry them with you.

Author: Tarek Kenawee

A former tennis player turned emotional eater best known for having lost a whopping 30% of his bodyweight, gained it all back and lost it all again in a year. The journey has taught Tarek much about what our bodies are telling us about food, and even more, what our minds are. From there, fighting for the freedom of others from stress eating has become his passion.

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