When we have a bad habit such as smoking or biting our nails, the solution is to stop acting out the behavior from the impulse. Emotional overeating isn’t solved as easily. People need to eat. Eating food is a need, not just a desire. If you think of eating as a pendulum swinging freely back and forth between the extremes of eating all the time to starving, you can begin to find the way to the center.
The same principles drive everything in the world. If we pull a pendulum out one way, it will swing back just that far the other way. If we start a strict regimen eating style restricting ourselves from all the foods we enjoy, once we come in contact with our favorite foods, instincts eventually will lead to gorging on those foods and the pendulum will swing to the exact degree in the other direction, from restriction to over indulgence.
The place in the center is where there is no energy pushing the pendulum in either direction. When the pendulum comes to the balance point in the center, we can eat in peace instead of wasting our energy worrying about food, how much we eat and what choices me make. When in balance we eat when it’s time to eat, in a way that maintains the health of the body. Otherwise we are wasting energy dealing with the effects of eating too little, too much or the wrong foods.
Find the balance with food by not participating in the extremes. This can be accomplished through mindful eating rather that restriction or eating anything one desires.
“Moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance.” Epicurus