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What causes you to eat when you’re not feeling hungry? Perhaps you feel tired? Although there are many other causes, this is the one we’ll look at today. It’s a busy time of year and most of us undoubtedly have lots to do. Running around trying to get everything done can often leave us feeling tired or even exhausted. The thought of eating healthily often gets pushed to the back of our minds, because we need to fix a meal which is quick, convenient and fits in with everything else.

If you eat food when you’re not hungry, the urge to eat is usually triggered by something else. For some people feeling tired is a trigger to reach for food. I’ve found that when I feel tired I’m more likely to overeat. Identifying that you’re tired rather than hungry is a giant step forward to achieving permanent weight loss. What leaves you feeling tired? Are you taking on too much? Do you need to let some of it go? What can you do to alert yourself to feeling tired? Are you putting everyone else’s needs in front of yours?

If you’re likely to be tired at particular times, plan ahead and see if you can perhaps change your routine. When you reach for food, yet you know you’re not really feeling hungry, try asking yourself some questions. Am I feeling tired and need something other than food? What do I really need? What would help me feel more awake and refreshed?

This feeling of tiredness when we’re really busy often stems from putting other peoples’ needs and wants first. We make ourselves available to others and if it’s not what we really want, we can end up feeling resentful. Resentment is a huge drain on our energy and is likely to leave us feeling tired and exhausted. Perhaps your children want to go out or your family are visiting and expecting you to do everything. Maybe your partner is choosing to relax while you’re still doing household chores or at work you’re having to cope with an added workload.

I would really encourage you to start putting yourself first. Start considering what you need and want at different times. Perhaps, you need a short break each day, a 10 minute walk on your own, or others to help you more and possibly make time for ‘you’. When you put yourself first, you aren’t as likely to get tired or reach for extra food, because all you really need is either more sleep, some relaxation or not to feel as if everything falls on your plate.

The majority of us are extremely good at giving to others and putting them first. Now stretch yourself and start giving to yourself first. Most people find putting themselves first is difficult because they often feel this means being uncaring and selfish. On the contrary, putting yourself first means taking great care of yourself, your needs and your health. This means you’re more able to give to others. Learning to put yourself first is part of taking care of yourself. When you take great care of yourself, you show you feel worthy as a person. This feeling of worthiness leaves us feeling good about ourselves. When you feel good about yourself, you’re more likely not to overeat and choose healthier food options. Putting yourself first is a big leap forward for most of us so I encourage you to start with small steps.

What does putting yourself first look like and feel like to you? What will it take before you believe that you’re worthy of putting yourself first?

Wendy Hearn
Weight Loss Success Coach

Author of "The Top 10 Things That Stop YOU From Losing Weight"

I work with people who want to lose weight and have a great life. I offer individual and group coaching, via the telephone or email.

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