Is ANGER keeping me from losing weight?
Many people have been taught to not express their anger or they’re afraid to express it or they don’t know how. So often in my office I hear statements like “it’s not proper”; “I don’t really get angry”; “I hate yelling”; “nothing happens when I get mad anyway” or “bad things happen when I get angry so I just don’t do it.” Always trying to do what is “best” or right, self-sacrificing, not making waves, always taking care of others first and not speaking up when you feel hurt or wronged are patterns that many struggle with. The frustration and hostility that builds can eventually turn to anger. But if the anger is not expressed, its energy becomes stored in the body. Unexpressed anger can contribute to weight issues because of the resentment, frustration, and anxiety that often accompany this emotion. If we stuff these feelings, we have to dosomething to feel better and that something is often overeating.
One of the first steps in dealing with your anger is to reflect upon who you are angry with or what you are angry about. Once you’ve established who or what you are angry at it is time to get it out. If you let it speak, your anger is always saying “this feels so unfair, I was wronged!” Try changing the word from anger to outrage and be outraged for yourself. If you don’t trust yourself to release the anger, consider trying EFT (emotional freedom technique). It’s a mind-body tool we use daily in our office to help people safely release negative energies and emotions.
The next step in the process is forgiveness. Forgiveness is one of the most powerful things that you can do for your physiology and your emotional health. To forgive is somehow associated with saying that it is all right, that we accept the evil deed. But this is not forgiveness.
Forgiveness means that you let go of the negative energy because it’s no longer serving you well. Holding onto it usually only hurts YOU, both physically and emotionally. I’ve had the honor of working with many people who thought it would be impossible to forgive someone who had wronged them (or even themselves). The release they felt when they were truly able to “let it go” was amazing. Most report that a huge weight was lifted from their shoulders and that their emotional eating decreased as a result.