Chicks in Control - Does journaling actually help...

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11-05-2013, 01:25 PM
I've been told a lot that when you suffer from BED, it does but I've tried it recently and it didn't work out. What are some other options to overcoming BED?

11-05-2013, 05:40 PM
How did it not work out? What did you journal about? - the cravings, the feelings, what you did or did not eat? Journaling is both a way to get the feeling out and a record to review in evaluating behavior. The absolute bottom line is that you have to be honest in the writing. We are very adept at fooling and lying to ourselves.

11-06-2013, 08:49 AM
I find myself not journaling when I mess up. I'm good about recording successes and what I want to do, but when it comes to a binge and logging how many calories I think I ate, how much salt, etc., I'll tell myself that I will journal the next day.
As tommy said, honesty is very important in journaling.

Good luck, I'm still trying to get myself to journal everyday too, even on the days when I eat 2000 calories more than I should have.

Pink Hurricane
11-06-2013, 09:03 AM
I found that when I journal I feel a lot more accountable. I use MyFitnessPal and have people on there that can see my food diary as well. If I overeat, I am more likely not to journal. Once I got in the habit of writing down EVERYTHING I eat, whether or not I am on plan that day, I hold a lot more accountability for my actions. I am also able to pinpoint patterns in when I overeat, usually when I feel overwhelmed.

I would keep journaling, it's not something that will change overnight, but by seeing everything you eat, whether it was a good plan day or a day when you overdid it, you will want to not disappoint yourself. It has certainly helped me!

11-06-2013, 10:04 AM
There's different kinds of journaling. There have been times where I keep a lot of journals. I journal my weight and measurements. I journal my food and calories. I journal my exericise. I've combined all those into 1 journal and keep it in a composition notebook. One whole page is devoted to weight/measuresmetns, food, calories and exercise. This helps me stay on track and hold myself accountable for my ACTIONS.

Another type of journal that is very very helpful in overcoming BED is a journal dedicated to identifying your mood/feelings in response to food and hunger. This will help you understand why you eat, and what you feel when you eat. It will show you patterns that arise that you can then address. It's not about what you eat so much as it is about why you eat. So you set it up as a chart, likewise in a notebook and each page is devoted to one day. Set it up horizontally and write across the following:

Date/Time/Level of Hunger/How do you feel/Food you ate/Feelings during eating/Feelings after you ate

Another type of journal I like to keep is a gratitude journal. All too often we use diaries to vent, but I like to look back on my day and think of all the things I accomplish, all the nice things somebody said or did, all the times I smiled or felt proud of myself etc. It's a nice way to end the day on a postiive note.

11-08-2013, 11:34 AM
I didn't talk about the feelings just food.

Fiona W
11-26-2013, 04:46 PM
I find journaling very helpful. I don't do anything systematic. I don't write down my weight, measurements, goals, food eaten, or any of that stuff. I just write about EMOTIONS—all the emotions that come pouring out when I restrain myself from compulsive eating behavior. If I'm craving a trigger food, I write about my feelings instead of eating that food. And it's usually pretty ugly: anger, frustration, rage, dark depression, disgust, impatience, neediness, fear, that sort of thing...

Why do I write about my emotions? In order NOT to eat them away. Sometimes I analyze what went wrong if I had an episode, but mostly I write in order NOT to have an episode in the first place. Because if I express my feelings in words, or even just in frantically scribbled doodles—anything & everything is allowed in my private journal—those feelings become less terrifying, less miserable-making, less hungry-making. Writing it all out is soothing. And that's what I need in order not to have an emotional eating episode: I need to be soothed.

Try it: write about how pissed off you are, how bleak your outlook is, how frustrated you are about X situation or Y person, how much you hate your body, how guilty & self-loathing you feel, how much you want to just fill yourself up like a baby with its bottle...whatever the emotion is. Write to tell yourself it's OK to feel however you feel. Keep writing until you're writing literally that: "This is OK. I'm allowed to feel this way."

Because it is OK! They're just feelings, not the end of the world. If you're a binge eater, you have a lot of feelings you know very little about, because you binge in order to make them go away. Write in order to learn about those feelings, and in order to see that they won't destroy you, nor will they destroy anyone else, no matter how negative they may be. Everyone has negative feelings: they're part of life. And you can learn how to live with yours, instead of eating to banish them.

Whoever's reading this, whoever needs to hear this, I sincerely wish you the best of luck! Have a great holiday season, full of emotions that you accept, no matter what they are!