Let’s face it – living in a world facing a pandemic such as Covid-19 has more than its share of stress and challenges. We are taking many safety precautions such as extra home cleaning, handwashing and social distancing, which result in myriad other challenges that impact our life on a daily basis. As part of social distancing, most of us are confined to our homes. This alone can open up a bigger list of challenges. First of all, maybe you are not practicing social distancing from the refrigerator or cookie jar. Or perhaps, another member of your household does the grocery store shopping and returns with things you don’t usually have in your home such as comfort or junk food. Just the mere proximity of yourself to these foods can cause stress and the home confinement can lead to a boredom you are not used to and therefore, you find yourself exploring the kitchen more often than you should.
The good news is that there is something you can do to manage your boredom and stress effectively. If you are feeling stressed, the best thing to do is to change the way you think about food. If you typically think to yourself “If I just eat this cookie, I will feel better.” But do you feel better? Or do you feel worse because the moment that last bite goes down, you have now the added stress of guilt, feeling sick or gaining weight. Ultimately, the stress will not go away be eating a cookie, that will only add new problems to your plate. If boredom has been an issue for you, then you need to look for something else to do to replace it. This can be different for everyone, so you need to ask yourself the question of what will work for you to get you over that hump. It could be taking a walk, having a cup of tea, reading a book or even taking a bath. A good tip that works for me is brushing my teeth immediately after dinner. This act alone can make you less likely to eat something afterwards.
Combatting bad eating choices as a result of stress and boredom are a little different in technique, but they both stem from sabotaging thoughts. When dealing with stress, you need to remind yourself that your poor eating choices will not fix your stress, but will create a bigger problem. With boredom, you need to change your behavior and adapt to a healthier choice in habits. Above, all, remember we are all in this together – all around the world. If think you would benefit from a support group, I am currently hosting a Facebook support group to help as many people as possible navigate the health eating challenges caused by stress and boredom from this global pandemic. You can find it at: www.facebook.com/mindoverfoodtraining. In the meantime, there is a solution to every problem and if you work at it, you’ll be on the path to a healthier lifestyle whether you are confined to your home or not.