Avoid The Quarantine 15: Two Simple Questions That Will Stop Binge Eating

shelli johnson weight loss, start where you are weight loss, two simple questions to stop binge eating, Avoid The Quarantine 15

I’ve struggled to stop binge eating (& avoid The Quarantine 15) more in the past few weeks than I have in the past few years. It’s partly the state of the world right now; it’s also partly from feeling vulnerable and exposed because of the publication of my weight-loss book. Even after all these years, the temptation to abuse food and binge eat hasn’t left me for good.

Recognize what’s actually going on

I know it’s not about the food. It’s about what I’m feeling—all this anxiety and fear and vulnerability—all these emotions that I don’t want to be feeling. I want to binge eat so food can numb me and make everything better. I also know that food might numb me for a little while, but food will never fix it. And being aware of all those things are huge wins.

I know exactly what I need to do to get myself through that temptation to abuse food so that I don’t go spiraling out of control and binge eating for days, weeks, or months. That knowledge and acting on it, that’s a major win too.



The Two Simple Questions You Need To Ask To Stop Binge Eating (& Avoid The Quarantine 15)

In those moments when you just want to binge eat and have food make everything go away, stop and ask yourself out loud:

“What’s the matter, [your name]? What do you need?”

The answers to those questions will be the basis for your self care. Self-care is done to increase your resilience so you can keep going in the face of challenges. It’s also done to enhance your overall well-being, including physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually too. You know yourself best. So trust yourself to know what you need to feel calmer and supported and better about life right in this moment (that doesn’t include abusing any substance/behavior).

The best way you can take care of yourself is to listen to your body. And it’s only when you’re calmer that you can actually hear the signals your body is trying to tell you. That’s especially true about hunger and fullness cues. You really can’t hear those signals when you’re highly emotional, overly stressed, completely overwhelmed, and the like.


Get off the diet-go-round.

Get on with your life.


Self-care really is the key to calming yourself down. If you find yourself panicked, worried, fearful, full of anxiety, and maybe being in your life and/or your body seems to be difficult:

  1. Take a moment.
  2. Don’t abuse any substance or behavior, including food.
  3. Ask yourself these two questions out loud: What’s the matter, [your name]? What do you need?

What’s the matter? will pinpoint the problem.

What do you need? will tell you how to heal yourself.


Take Action To Stop Binge Eating (& Avoid The Quarantine 15)

  1. Answer those two questions for yourself.
  2. Do yourself a kindness: listen to your own wisdom and act on it. Go do whatever the answer is to what you need.
  3. Take really good care of yourself, especially now when everything in the world is so uncertain. Practice self-care and go do something today that’ll nourish you and comfort you and replenish you.
  4. Remind yourself (if you don’t already believe it) that you’re worth the time and the effort to take excellent care of yourself. (I assure you that you are).


Get off the diet-go-round.

Get on with your life.


My weight-loss journey & how it can help you stop binge eating (& avoid The Quarantine 15)

I got free. Your life can be that way too.

I made my own path because I needed to get myself out of the crazy-making behavior I was having around food. I needed no restrictions, no weighing and measuring food, no off-limit foods, no more judgment around food, no more judging my self-worth based on the scale, no more you’re-not-doing-it-perfectly diet rules that were only fueling my constant thinking about and obsession with food. I needed to modify and change any weight-loss technique I found useful to suit my own personal needs.

  • I lost 160+ pounds naturally & have kept it off for 8 years and counting.
  • I no longer have any eating disorders.
  • I no longer have a fear of food.

Just imagine what you could be doing with your life, following your own dreams and reaching your own goals, cultivating your own passions, making both your inner and outer worlds a more blissful and peaceful place, if you weren’t running in circles on the diet-go-round.

I got that for my life. I want it for yours. My books will show you how.


Start Where You Are Weight LossTM

Start Where You Are Weight Loss PlaybookTM


Let 2020 be the year you make peace with your body and with food.

For more information, check out the Start Where You Are Weight Loss page.


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2 thoughts on “Avoid The Quarantine 15: Two Simple Questions That Will Stop Binge Eating”

  1. How do you deal with dessert? I have been waiting until meals or I’m hungry to eat but never after a meal am I still hungry so doesn’t allow for dessert….. do you eat a very small meal so you still are hungry for dessert?

    1. Hi Elizabeth,

      I eat dessert when I’m hungry. Most of the time I decide before I even serve myself whether I want dessert or not, then I serve myself less of a meal so I won’t yet be comfortably full when I want to eat dessert at the end of the meal. I’ve been doing this a while, so I usually know pretty accurately how much to serve myself. You’ll get the hang of how much to serve yourself the more that you practice eating this way.

      If I’m starting to get full and I’ve still got the meal left on my plate, I simply stop eating the meal and instead eat dessert. FYI: sometimes, I choose to eat dessert first if that’s what my body is craving.

      Two things I always keep in mind:
      1. Often I just want a taste of things, which means I want a few bites of whatever it is and not the whole thing.
      2. I don’t have to finish off anything on my plate. I only have to listen to my body and stop when I’m comfortably full.

      Both of those hold true for meals and also for desserts.

      As always: find out what works best for you and do that. Hope that helps you, doll!

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