7 Rules To Stop Emotional Eating At Night

By Jackie Wicks, PEERtrainer co-founder
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This is being written to help you if you have a strong need to stop your emotional and night eating habits.  I know you love food and rules can be harsh.  If you don’t want to deal with emotional eating right now, you don’t have to.  I’m not making you.  No one is making you. 

I'm writing it to give you a guide, a set of rules to help you stop emotional eating if this is something you want to do.   I think rules help bring clarity and a guide to help solve things.

One thing we notice from all the response about emotional eating here at PEERtrainer is that 85% of the trouble with emotional eating is done in the home.  Whether it’s at home nibbling and snacking while you’re making dinner, (or right after work), or it’s snacking all night while the TV is on.  One of you wrote it’s when your mind is racing with thoughts from the day while you stuff your mouth with potato chip after potato chip. 

A few of you said, "You know, you’re missing the point entirely.  I LOVE food.  I will find any excuse to make crème Brule.  I get lost in Gourmet magazine during work dreaming of what I’m going to have for dinner and when my family is together, the second our omelets and croissants are finished in the morning, we’re planning lunch.  Food is the most wonderful thing in the world. 

I know you guys have trouble at parties and trouble when donuts have been put in the office kitchen that you have to walk by at least 20 times during the day but I’m going to focus on something that you have complete control over.  Your home.  And I’m going to give you a set of rules.  The rules will seem outlandish to most of you and I can say with 99% certainty that I will get a lot of pushback and be called maniacal.

This reminds me of a book I read years ago called “The Rules".  It was a popular book about “how to get a man” and it was a basic set of rules that “turned back the clock on the feminist movement” (that was the popular outcry). ” The modern version is something like “She’s Just Not Into You” but what I liked about "The Rules" book is that it was very clear and easy to follow.

The premise of the book was guys that fall in love - head over heels in love - need a chase.  They need to win you.  So forget calling them, asking them out.  Let them take the lead.  Just like they went out and did the hunting and gathering, let them “hunt” you.  When you go back to the way men used to date, they asked you out, they pursued you and you made yourself busy and didn’t obsess about them calling and didn’t call them, you’d get the relationship you want. 

The book was on Oprah and many people used this book as their bible and many women turned around their dating lives.  Many women were outraged saying, how could you recommend that women become powerless?  That they take a backseat?  That’s basically urging women to become inferior! 

But the “Rules” women and the people who liked the rules thought the contrary.  They perceived this as getting their power back because as hard as it was to be disciplined and not call, they were getting a greater payoff – the man they always wanted. 

Call it archaic, sexist, call it whatever you want but here’s my point:  There were clear rules to follow and if you followed these rules you would be “successful” in getting what you wanted.  There’s something to that.  When you have a clear set of rules that you know you can’t break (kind of like the commandments), you have a greater sense of how to get your goal. 

So….here are my rules for the home.  They may seem harsh.  You may want to throw them out the window.  Or you may find that they might work for you.  Many of them are based in common sense and it's easy to understand.

Next Page: Rule #1

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