I used to be a binge eater. Together, the Emotional Freedom Technique and Intuitive Eating have allowed me to ditch the label of “binge eater.”
Just like me, you don’t have to be stuck in your own labels anymore. I’m going to tell you a bit of my story to show you how you can ditch your labels, too.
Growing up in Baltimore, I was often still hungry after finishing eating a meal my mom cooked. It wasn’t because there was not enough food. I just wasn’t satisfied. I’d look at my empty plate and think, “That’s it?” I started feeling like food was scarce. And, I started sneaking food.
At about age 10, my family and I experienced some traumatic events. As a kid, I didn’t know how to cope with what had happened. Food became how I coped. Food provided comfort, safety, and love, without judgment, during this time and into the future.
I was bigger than most kids my age. People would make comments about size like, “You’re so thick!” My mom always focused on getting clothes that fit and looked nice which helped. I knew this took extra effort on her part, which I did and still do appreciate. All of this led me to internalize that there was something wrong with my body.
In middle and high school the bullies came out - like what happens for a lot of kids - especially those in larger bodies. I was constantly teased and bullied for not looking thin and cool.
Dieting, and binge eating, started in elementary school and continued into adulthood.
As an adult, I wanted to help others with their health which resulted in me becoming a health coach. My health coaching education was steeped in diet culture. Not only was I learning about dieting and diet culture, but I was also dieting myself, and teaching others diet culture and dieting.
I lost 80 pounds and would tell other people that my life was better. In reality, though, life wasn’t better. I still felt ashamed about my body size. I constantly needed validation from others because I didn’t value myself. I didn’t feel healthy, and I wasn’t.
What I know now is that I didn’t have food freedom. To me, food freedom means that I no longer have to obsess about food or thoughts of food. I have a choice about the food I eat and the thoughts I have about food. Honestly, it’s more complicated than that. I’ll write another blog about food freedom soon.
Something did click in health coaching school - the importance of self-care and that there is some sort of emotional component to food.
I had never, ever thought that my relationship with food was linked with my emotions and the trauma I experienced as a kid.
I remember thinking, “It isn’t about the food. It’s about something else.”
This was a life-changing realization.
I don’t remember exactly how the Emotional Freedom Technique (also called EFT or tapping) first came into my life. I was searching “emotional eating” and somewhere along the way, tapping came up. What I can tell you is that when I started learning and practicing tapping, things in my life immediately started changing for the better.
I learned that tapping helps you:
After a weekend training session, my life was permanently changed. I learned I could retrain my brain around a lot of things including my relationship with food.
In this weekend session, I saw and felt my energy shift. It was something no diet could ever give me. I was at peace for probably the first time in my life. I knew I could make different choices from that point forward.
After practicing tapping and learning more, I knew I had to become an EFT Certified Practitioner with Tina Craig.
The health coach training and tapping led me to figure out the emotional connection to food. However, I still knew there were things I needed to work on including the belief that I needed to lose weight. I still felt there was something wrong with my body’s size.
I had started working with an acupuncturist and was getting results. However, my brain was still telling me, “You’ve gotta lose weight. You can’t stick to anything.”
I knew there was energy, flow, that needed to be worked with.
My acupuncturist introduced me to Christy Harrison’s FoodPsych podcast. She thought Intuitive Eating (IE) and an anti-diet approach was the missing piece.
She was absolutely right.
However, when I started listening to the podcast, I thought, “they’re crazy.” But, something about what they were saying sounded great, like what I wanted. However, the path to get there didn’t sound so good.
I knew that to give Intuitive Eating a shot, I had to trust myself enough to listen, learn more, and give IE a chance. This is when I realized that tapping could help me become an intuitive eater.
Through IE and tapping, I was able to look at dieting with new eyes. I finally understood in my bones that the diets were the problem, not me!
I don’t know how I would have worked through IE without tapping.
Although there are 10 Principles that guide IE, you get to find out what they mean and how IE works for you. That’s where tapping comes into play.
Tapping allows you to rebuild trust with your body (dieting tells you not to trust your body). As you work through the 10 Principles of Intuitive Eating, all sorts of emotions come up - fear, sadness, disappointment, and anger just to name a few.
Working through these emotions can be scary. Feeling these emotions, especially not feeling safe, can stop you from continuing your journey to become an intuitive eater. But, working through them is what you have to do to become an intuitive eater. Tapping allows you to safely be with those emotions, process, address, and clear them so you can continue your IE journey.
Now that you’ve learned a bit about my past, let’s talk about what's coming.
If you want to explore tapping, Intuitive Eating, and your relationships with food and your body, my membership and Facebook Community is just what you’re looking for! In the Food Freedom Tapping Membership, you’ll get guided tapping sessions to help you shift your energy around emotional eating, body acceptance, and cravings.
You’ll learn about Intuitive Eating and learn the basics of tapping. This membership will help improve your mental, emotional, and physical health.
EFT, positive affirmations, daily reminders, and other features of our community provide the consistent reminders that are needed to get the most benefits from these practices.
You deserve to take the time for yourself to heal. You deserve to heal your relationship with food. Joining our membership may seem like a small step in your self-love journey, but we promise you it will be worth it.
Tapping can help you clear the emotional and mental blocks that happen as you work through Intuitive Eating or work on overcoming your fears and emotions around food. By combining tapping and IE, I’m no longer a binge eater. I want to help you get rid of those labels you use about yourself.
The quickest and easiest way to get started is to download the Food Freedom Tapping Membership. If you want, you can also reach out to me in our Facebook Community.