Do you vow that you won’t eat too much and only eat healthy food ….. and then find yourself that evening watching TV and eating whatever’s around that tastes good . (Even though you had dinner only a short time ago)
Maybe it’s because you are bored. Being bored is an unpleasant feeling and eating makes us feel better. However it doesn’t deal with what is causing the boredom, and, when we stop eating we feel worse than before, because we now feel regretful and guilty for overeating.
Boredom is a signal that you need to make some changes in your life.
Tips to stop boredom eating
Ask yourself: ‘Is this boredom the result of being temporarily in a situation that lacks challenge and novelty? Or is it a more overall type of boredom, when you find most of life uninteresting? ‘
If we know there is a likelihood of a temporary ‘boring’ situations occurring we can:
(a) Avoid them (by planning do something else at this time) Think about when you commonly become bored. What else could you do at these times?
(b) Adapt them If you can’t avoid boring situations, how could you make these situations more interesting? Even simple things like changing the place you sit or making a ‘game’ out of boring activities like truck drivers who count passing objects, have been found to help.
(c) Increase your boredom threshold so you are less likely to become bored. A low boredom threshold is linked to having a short attention span. Practising mindfulness meditation, can, increase your attention span and therefore raise your boredom threshold.
When Life in general is boring,
If the boredom you are feeling is more the ‘life in general is boring and nothing seems to satisfy’ type, the first thing to check would be that this is not the result of a medical issue. Once that has been ruled out, you may find it helpful to spend some time considering your reason or purpose for living. It is difficult to be interested in activities if you feel they have no purpose.
Thinking about what legacy you want to leave often helps clarify your purpose in life. Imagine you are at your own funeral and your family and friends are talking about you. What kind of person were you? What achievements and contributions would you want them to remember you for? What difference did you make in people’s lives?
The answer to these questions will likely inspire you to make some changes in your life, which in turn will reduce boredom. (And the eating that goes with it )
Support, when we are making changes is always helpful. (maybe from a group facing similar challenges, a trusted friend or a coach)