Happy New Year From A Grateful Recovering Stuffer!

Posted by Janelle Brown on

Maybe you are wondering what I mean when I call myself a “stuffer”. 

Let me give a little background.  In my wellness journey, I have realized just how much my emotions - and how I handle those emotions - have played into my weight over the years.  I can tell you how many calories are in any food, I can tell you how many calories I burn exercising, I know about nutrient density, low fat, no carb, paleo, vegan…I know it all. 

But there was still something sabotaging me.

I have finally had to come to terms with how much I eat to soothe, to deal and to ignore.  And, in retrospect, it has been going on a long time.  Probably as far back as many of my early memories go.

Once I realized what was going on wasn’t just a character flaw, I had to figure out what mechanism(s) were triggering me exactly.   I know stress is a big one for me, but also nerves, feelings of self-doubt or plain old feeling overwhelmed will also trigger me.  Once I had identified those hot buttons, I have had to work to unravel their power instead of packing the offending emotions away in a neat little box and “stuffing” them down with whatever large quantity of food was on hand, junk or otherwise.

This has been a scary project!

I’m generally very even in my temperament and moods.  I was worried that my status quo would get way to out of balance if I allowed myself to feel and process.  And to be honest, it has, but not in the way I had imagined.

I have had to learn how to stop and ask myself why I want to eat that entire plate, box or whatever.  What is really going on?  I have had to learn to be quiet for a few minutes, to tune in, and to meditate at times.  I have had to learn how to really be open to people, to ask for help, and ask questions to seek understanding instead of just trying to control outcomes.  I have had to try and not control in general (this was a big one for the high planner that I am).  I had to be willing to go with the flow more and worry less.  And, I learned I needed to shift my perspective sometimes.  View lots of demand from family, clients, and work as an opportunity to serve others rather than feeling like I had too many demands being placed on me.  (This step has been HUGE!)

Yes, I am still a recovering stuffer, meaning that I acknowledge I still have so far to go on this path. And yes, I still protect my voice, my personality, my boundaries, but I hope to continue to do this in this new improved way as we go into this new year. 

May your New Year bring you peace and prosperity! Happy New Year!

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  • I hear ya. I’ve always been that way, but having just gone thru a divorce and finding myself learning to be a single Mom of 2 young boys it’s in overdrive. My weight is skyrocketing while my self esteem is plummeting. I’m finally learning I need to on that before I can get this weight off the right way (or as I do it).

    Tara H. on
  • I just started my own healthy journey and I really relate to this. The urge to stuff seems overhwleming. Sometimes I cry trying to fight the urge. The cravings are intense. I would live some advice on how to deal with this.

    Angela Mercer on
  • I’m so very happy to finally see a real plus sized woman doing this. I love following you. I’m not a “stuffer” per se but I do love my sugar treats. I have quite a bit to lose and am 6 months shy of the big 50. We can do this

    Kelly on
  • I think you just described my life!! Hopefully this year my journey to heal and grow will lead me to a place that makes these things no longer necessary in my world! Thank you for sharing this.

    Renee on
  • Wonderfully written and expressed! I totally relate to being a “stuffer.” I stuff because I’m happy, sad, bored, stressed, etc. Having a name for it will help me be mindful of what I’m doing when I’m doing it! Thank you!

    Jackie on

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