For many years, food was my go-to means of nurturing myself when I was upset, tired or emotional. When I began the slow process of losing 100 lbs for the final time, I needed to learn to soothe myself without food. I didn’t even consider all the other ways that are possible. Now I’ve learned it’s possible to feel better without overeating, and you can do it, too! Here are 20 ways to feel better without overeating.

I turned to food again and again because it is how I had conditioned myself to relax and calm down. There are many ways to soothe yourself that do not involve calories, and some of them actually work much better.

Try one of these the next time you are upset and find yourself reaching for a snack, but are not actually hungry. Give yourself grace and time to learn these new patterns. What is learned can be unlearned. 

Eventually nurturing yourself with other methods will become part of your normal.

20+ Ways to Feel Better Without Overeating

  • Go for a walk or run.
  • Read.
  • Write in a journal.
  • Take a bath or shower.
  • Call a friend.
  • Pray.
  • Do a hobby.
  • Have sex.
  • Meditate.
  • Clean house.
  • Organize a drawer or closet.
  • Spend time playing with kids.
  • Play an online game.
  • Watch TV.
  • Play a sport.
  • Take a nap.
  • Garden.
  • Get a massage.
  • Paint your nails.
  • Do your hair and make-up.
  • Try on clothes.
  • Shop for something inexpensive but enjoyable.
  • Listen to music.
  • Watch a funny movie.
  • Watch a sad movie and cry a lot.
  • Look at favorite photos.
  • Play with pets.
  • Cry.
  • Scream.
  • Laugh.
  • Ask for a hug.
  • Talk to your husband.
  • Put on music and dance around the house.
  • Skip rocks at the pond.
  • Break something. (Non-valuable.)
  • Read favorite Bible verses.
  • Wrap in a warm blanket.

What do you do to feel better that doesn’t involve eating?

20 Ways to Feel Better Without Overeating|The Holy Mess