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2012 May 7
by Jill

Despite a relaxing, fun, and delicious weekend (or maybe because of?), Monday has been exceptionally rough. Whenever things get like this, especially during my birthday week, I am tempted to wallow, and to treat myself with things that aren’t good for me. For example, I went to J. Crew on my lunch break, hoping to help things by spending money and buying clothes I don’t need. Luckily, nothing quite worked in the fitting room (though that REALLY didn’t help), and I walked out without making a dent in my wallet. However, I did buy chips and guac at Chipotle on the way back to the office and devoured most of the bag though I’d already eaten a salad for lunch earlier. Now I have a stomach ache and profound guilt.

Do any of you have this problem? When things don’t turn out as hoped, or are just particularly crappy, do you turn to shopping or ice cream or other things that are “bad” for you to make you feel better? I’m thinking that kicking back with a book and the pup and the fiance will help the situation a great deal, but what to do when those options aren’t available? I’m interested in your tips!



7 Responses Post a comment
  1. May 7, 2012

    I definitely turn to “bad” things like that when I’m in a bad mood. At least things like shopping or ice cream aren’t too harmful. But in the slightly healthier vein, I try to watch adorable pet videos or totally feel-good movies. (Once I had a bad day and Walt suggested we watch a Jane Austen movie. It helped!) And naps are truly the great mood stabilizer. Hope you’re feeling back to normal soon!

  2. May 7, 2012

    I do the same thing. Anthropologie and chocolate chips are my comfort vices. When I figure out how to resist the temptation, I’ll share my tips with you.

  3. Raquel permalink
    May 7, 2012

    I hear you, ladyfriend. In fact, I overate guacamole at today’s lunch (EYES BIGGER THAN TUM SYNDROME!) and now also have WonkyTum. BLURGH. Curse you, guacamole! It’s Avocado Rebellion Day!

    I have been working in earnest for the past few months on finding ways to self-soothe that don’t involve food, because I realize that I have had a real problem with emotional and mindless eating since I was a kid.

    I am finding new ways to cope with stress, anxiety, anger, boredom, and other unpleasant emotions that help me deal with the emotion and also soothe me physically, since our emotions often manifest themselves with accompanying physical sensations. I find that deep breathing–taking several minutes to sit and breathe deeply, either in silence or using a guided CD–really, really helps. I am also dabbling in EFT tapping (Google it)–it looks completely bizarre and hokey but it actually helps me calm down! However hokey it is, it is relaxing to tap on bodily pressure points.

    In addition to the breathing and tapping, just getting into a different environment can help, like switching rooms, taking a quick walk, or doing another task for a while. Sometimes I take a few minutes to stream-of-consciousness journal about how I’m feeling, which can help me vent frustrations and makes it feel like I’m purging somehow. Sometimes I take a break at my computer and look at fun things online (BABY ANIMALS), but if they are things I can buy, I make sure not to have my wallet handy so I won’t impulsively buy things. (Because impulsive shopping is like my alternative to emotional eating.) And other times I just let myself feel the icky feelings and let myself be in a funk because I know the feelings will pass. It kind of sucks while I’m feeling them, but the sooner you deal with unpleasantries, the sooner they’ll end and the faster you’ll get back to feeling better.

    Whatever you do, don’t beat yourself up out of guilt. Too many years of vicious binge-deprivation-binge cycles have taught me that guilt never leads to good things. Be kind to yourself and say, “Well, this was a bust. Things are shitty now but they will get better.” And then move on from those thoughts.

    If you’re in a situation where you can’t be with Chief, Joe, and coziness, do try the eyes closed deep breathing. It is amazing how calming and centering brief meditation can be. (And perhaps a bit of pressure point massage, that can also be discreet and very helpful.) If you’re at your work desk, you can also try journaling in a Google Doc to get some of the funk out in words–it’ll just look like you’re working.

    It’s totally normal to feel funky when you get back to boring, mundane things after fun and celebrations. It’s why everyone gets morose in mid-January. Just treat yourself compassionately and be kind to yourself, and remember that the funk won’t last forever. Sometimes it feels like it never will and I feel a bit better knowing it’ll end eventually. I could write loads more about all this emotional coping stuff as I am currently mired deeply in it, but just email or chat me if you ever want to discuss further. Feel better, friend!

  4. May 7, 2012

    I totally feel you on this one. Between treats when I need a pick me up and treats when I’m celebrating something good, sometimes it seems like the rare day when I’m not treating myself to something. Luckily for my wallet, there aren’t too many retail temptations around my office.

  5. May 8, 2012

    When I am in a bad mood or a rut, I definitely turn to food or shopping to cheer me up which is terrible but true. I love cookies… and skirts. It’s a weakness! And it does make me feel better, but only for 30 seconds. 😀

  6. Annie permalink
    May 8, 2012

    I do this ALL.THE.TIME. Probably why my closet is overflowing and my pants are a little right sometimes, haha. I wish I had some tips for you, but I can’t seem to shake the bad habits myself. Maybe just stick to healthier foods like fro yo, and cheaper stores? haha :)

    The Other Side of Gray

  7. May 8, 2012

    Bad mood for me=Cheez-its, root beer, and mindless TV or movie. Annie’s Jane Austen suggestion is great, and I would extend that to all period dramas–especially the BBC miniseries streaming on Netflix. Dresses! Tophats! Gallantry! It’s the best way to feel better.

    Also…friends! :-)

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