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Emotional Eating with Dr. Mike Frazier, MD

Whether you struggle with emotional eating or any other type of destructive behavior, Dr. Mike's use of the the life coach model can help you "name, breathe, feel, deal" your way to conquering those situations.

[00:00:00] Nikki: Hey everyone. This is Nikki in Sydney. And today we are going to be talking more about emotionally eating 

[00:00:07] Sydney: This is fearless wellness, a podcast for women who are experiencing hormone issues and difficulty losing weight.

[00:00:14] Nikki: Here we will give you bite-sized tips to help you balance your hormones and We’re your hosts, Nikki Walton. 

[00:00:20] Sydney: And Sydney.

[00:00:22] Nikki: We are functional nutritional therapy practitioners, and we want to be your health coaches.

[00:00:27] You guys. We cannot get away from this topic because it’s so important. The more that Sydney and I work with clients, the more we realize that it is, I don’t wanna give it a percentage, but okay. I just, I will throw caution to the wind here and say that it’s 90% emotional.

[00:00:46] Sydney: exactly the number that I was thinking, Nikki. In fact, I was thinking that. I would apply that number to 90% of our coaching is about this topic. That 90% is really, it’s just an emotional battle. It’s it’s not so much like how much time you spend doing something. It’s a hundred percent getting out, like getting on the mental game

[00:01:02] Nikki: Yeah, absolutely. It’s so funny. And Sydney and I play this game all the time.

[00:01:11] Sydney: in head.

[00:01:14] Nikki: I’m glad I got it. Okay. 90% is the number that we’re gonna go with is, uh, is the percent of what we do with our clients. And so we just cannot get enough of this topic. And that is why we have invited our special guest on today. Dr. Mike Frazier. We’re so, so excited to have him. I actually met him through my husband.

[00:01:33] Um, my husband. Unbeknownst to myself, signed up, to use him as a coach. And if you guys wanna hear all about that story, we just, we just did a podcast for him, about our success story, working with him. So super highly recommended. But that’s how we, that’s how we came to know each other. And I was just like, Mike, you need to come on our podcast.

[00:01:53] Teach us teach us everything about, about how, how you can use what you do in your practice with our listeners, for emotional eating. So take it away. Mike, tell us all about you.

[00:02:03] Mike: Yeah, well, yeah, first of all, just thanks for having me on. And, uh, it was awesome working with, with Nikki and Justin and, uh, super fun thing. Uh, um, so yeah, uh, Mike Frazier, I am AA psychiatrist. I went to medical school and did psychiatrist and see after that, um, got into coaching and marriages mainly because my own marriage was, um, looked good, but like there were a lot.

[00:02:26] From the outside, but inside lots of, uh, issues. So , you know, kinda learn how to work through that and, um, you know, got to a really good place and I help other guys do that same thing. Um, so, you know, if, uh, if there’s like a lack of mentally emotional, mental connection, emotional connection, sexual connection in your marriage, um, you know, that’s the type of guys that I work with.

[00:02:48] Christian guys, mainly high achieving Christian guys. Because a lot of times we think we’re really awesome and that turned into a lot of problems in the marriage. Um, so anyway, yeah, that’s, that’s basically me what I do, but, but a big part of what we do is, uh, emotional. I, I, I frame it as emotional strength just cuz I think guys kind of relate to that a little bit more.

[00:03:11] Um, but yeah, and, and that’s with whether it’s emotional leaving or I work a lot, a lot with guys that are trying to overcome porn. Um, same thing, you know, you, you have something kind of come up and you use whether it’s eating or pornography or whatever, to kind of deal with that emotion versus, you know, handling it in a more, um, either mature or strong, or at least like a way that gets you more of the result that you want versus the result that you don’t want.

[00:03:42] Nikki: So good. Thanks, Mike. And that, that is really why we wanted you to come on today because, um, throughout my husband’s program, Mike always likes to get to know the spouses. So he had me hop on a couple of calls with him and, and he walked me through the, the model and the process that he uses. And I was just like, and I had that, it was I think it was the week that I was writing the podcast on emotional eating.

[00:04:04] So I just had a, really, a really. Poignant we’ll call it poignant. I thought it was, um, an embarrassing, emotional eating experience that week, but, but he was like, well, let’s use the model. And I was like, okay, well let’s use the emotional eating thing. And, and I was just like, oh my gosh, that was really, really helpful.

[00:04:20] It was so simple and so helpful. And so that is, and, and we just were talking right before we started the podcast that, that I, in my own personal opinion, I don’t think there’s any. Between pornography addiction and food addiction. It’s the same pathways. It’s the same. You it’s the same steps. And what’s so cool about it is it’s the same solution.

[00:04:39] So that’s what we’re gonna talk about today. So, but even though I have been exposed to the model and have begun to implement it in my life, I really still consider myself a baby at this. I, I feel like my husband has it down. A mad man. He is so good at it. And I have tried and Sydney, same, like I personality wise, I don’t know what it is, but it just comes so easily to, to these guys.

[00:05:03] And I’m just like, that’s another like secret benefit of why I wanted to have him on today. So that benefit. So for my benefit and the benefit of those who haven’t heard it before, can you just walk us through it, take us through what.

[00:05:18] Mike: Yeah, absolutely. So, um, yeah, I have it up here. I don’t know if, um, uh, there’s like

[00:05:25] Nikki: We, this is just, we just record audio. You can see us, but we’re just recording

[00:05:29] Mike: Okay, cool. All right. So yeah, I mean, if you can picture in your mind, right. Or, or maybe you guys have like a, a link to like, just kind of like, uh, it in your notes or whatever.

[00:05:40] Sydney: Can link to it for

[00:05:41] Nikki: Yeah,

[00:05:41] Mike: Yeah. Yeah. And we could even make one, that’s like a little bit more geared towards emotional eating and kind of have that as a template for you guys.

[00:05:49] But, um, so like I’m, I’m looking at it here on my screen, just cuz it helps me kind of orient, but if you can kind of imagine, you know, different columns in a. Um, yeah, that like, what is it? 1, 2, 3, 6 columns. Um, so it’s B it’s based on something called the model by, it was created by Brooke Castillo. I just kind of added in an extra little letter in here.

[00:06:15] Um, the intention piece, just cuz in relationship’s really important. And even with this, it’s gonna be important too, because. A lot of it’s gonna be the same, but we’ll get to it. I think probably the easiest way actually is just to, to do one. And then, um, you know, we’ll kind of outline the, the steps as we go through it.

[00:06:33] Um, so yeah, I mean, if you guys can give me one just emotionally, either from you or one of your clients, or, you know, whatever,

[00:06:43] Nikki: Totally. Okay. So I didn’t know, we were gonna get to the, get to the meat of it so quickly. I’m so excited. Okay. So a lot of our clients we talk about, um, after meal, they’re always looking for something sweet.

[00:06:56] Mike: Okay.

[00:06:57] Nikki: that’s a huge, huge problem. And then they, we call it the infinity circle where they stay in the kitchen and make a figure eight around the kitchen for like an hour yeah, you’re totally laughing.

[00:07:08] Sydney: their STEs

[00:07:10] Nikki: Totally. No. Yeah. So they go to the freezer, they go to the pantry, they go to the cover, they go to their purse and they just make this infinity circle after a meal, looking for something sweet.

[00:07:20] Mike: Okay. So, um, for that, so the first column is S and it stands for a situation. So a situation is just what’s happening. Okay. There’s no meaning attached to it yet. So for this particular situation, I like to think, like, what would a video camera record? Right without sound or anything like that. And so for this situation, it would be like walking a figure eight around the kitchen.

[00:07:43] Right. Anybody could see that they could watch you doing it, but they don’t know anything else. Right. So we’ll just put in situation walking around the kitchen. Okay. So it’s kind of boring, but important that it’s boring because it helps you understand, like I get to attach whatever, meaning I want to different situations.

[00:08:01] And so the next column IST. So for. So, but what are what’s going through your head during this time? So, uh, this is where it gets interesting, right? so, so this person’s walking around the kitchen, but what’s going through their head. What are they thinking as they’re, you know, going through that?

[00:08:19] Nikki: something sweet.

[00:08:20] Mike: I need something sweet. Okay. Um, so

[00:08:25] Nikki: My meal, isn’t done.

[00:08:27] Mike: my meal isn’t done. Okay.

[00:08:29] Sydney: Or I’m craving. Yeah. I need something sweet. I’m craving something else.

[00:08:33] Mike: I’m craving something else.

[00:08:36] Nikki: Like I can’t leave until I have it.

[00:08:38] Mike: I can’t leave until I have it. Nice. Okay. So

[00:08:44] Nikki: oh. And once I, once I get it, this feeling will go.

[00:08:49] Mike: yeah.

[00:08:49] Nice once I get it, this feeling will go away. So I’m just dry it down. Cause it’s easier for me to kinda see it, but um, okay. I need something sweet. My meal. Isn’t done. I’m craving something else. So one of the tools I like to use is kinda like to ask why a bunch of times, so like with this, um, okay, so you kind of answer here, but like if like I need something sweet, but why do you need something?

[00:09:12] Sydney: The reason why ultimately is because I’m thinking something else, like I’m stressed about. Something that happened in the past or the future kind of like really, I’m just trying to satisfy an emotion. I’m trying to emotionally, I’m trying to, the reason why is because I have this negative emotion and I want something that can, um, buffer for it that can like bring in something sort of pleasure to counteract that negative feeling.

[00:09:35] Mike: Right. Yeah. And so that’s, what’s powerful. I like to call it the fivefold. Why? So just like asking yourself why five times usually if you go five deep you’ll, you’ll pretty much find it. It doesn’t always take five to get there, but like, okay. I need something sweet. But like, if I were asking me your clients, they might not have that much insight.

[00:09:52] Maybe they would, maybe they would after you’ve kind of explained it to you, but like what, what would they maybe say? Um, so I’m like, okay, you need something sweet. Why, what

[00:10:01] Sydney: Because I’m addicted to sugar.

[00:10:03] Mike: Okay.

[00:10:03] Nikki: because how about, because I, because I always do, you don’t really understand the addiction yet, but it’s like, because I always do. I always end my meal. I know that’s what my dad would say, because this is how I end my meal.

[00:10:14] Sydney: This is my habit. This

[00:10:16] Nikki: this is who I am like, this is how I always end my

[00:10:18] Mike: Right, right.

[00:10:18] Sydney: is my routine.

[00:10:20] Mike: Okay. So this is always you, but why? Like, why do you always do it?

[00:10:24] Nikki: Um, because, because I did it growing up,

[00:10:27] Mike: Okay. But why did you do it grow up?

[00:10:33] Nikki: because it was a treat for eating all of my dinner.

[00:10:39] Mike: Okay.

[00:10:39] Sydney: Good

[00:10:39] Mike: So

[00:10:41] Nikki: Like

[00:10:41] Sydney: exactly why

[00:10:43] Nikki: exactly. Because of good behavior, because I deserve it.

[00:10:48] Mike: okay. So now you start uncovering right now. There’s a lot of like emotional things tied to this. Like, you know, this is my reward. This means I was a good girl. You know, this means I, you know, did whatever, you know, it’s, it’s rewarding, all that stuff.

[00:11:03] Right. And so then you gotta ask. Okay. Like, so if another good question is like, okay, if you don’t get this treat, what does that.

[00:11:14] Nikki: Well probably means the opposite. It means the meal isn’t done. It means that I lose my identity of my childhood and it means that I didn’t do anything worth rewarding.

[00:11:24] Mike: Yeah. Okay. So now we’re talking

[00:11:28] Nikki: Oh yeah. This is good. See you guys I’m so much. Yes.

[00:11:34] Mike: so this is where you wanna get and, and like the way, you know, you’ve kind of found the powerful thought is if like it brings up a strong emotion. So like you keep going until you get to something that brings up some kind of strong emotion. The temptation is always to not go deep enough, right. Oh, I always do it weak.

[00:11:52] Right. You’re that’s like, there’s nothing attached to. Doesn’t matter. Oh, I need something sweet. Also very superficial. Right. And so what this does it like drills you down and you know, that took us a couple minutes. Doesn’t take that long. You just have to kind. Be willing to go a little bit deeper. you know, like Sydney said, if you kind of understand that we’re looking for a deeper emotion that will help guide you as well.

[00:12:16] yeah. Especially this, we’re talking about emotional leading, so we kind of know we’re looking for a deeper emotion. Right. Okay. So I didn’t do anything worth rewarding if I don’t give myself a treat. Okay. So that’s probably good enough. What emotion does that bring up? Okay. So if you tell yourself I didn’t do anything worth rewarding, what emotion is that?

[00:12:36] Sydney: Shame

[00:12:37] Mike: Okay.

[00:12:38] Nikki: Failure. And non-productive like, for someone like me, I, I value productivity. And so if that, if I didn’t do anything that was productive, that’s worth being rewarded, then that’s like a total waste

[00:12:50] Mike: Yeah.

[00:12:52] Nikki: unworthy. Yeah.

[00:12:54] Mike: Right. Okay. Good. Okay. So you feel that, and then what do you do. So a is for action. That’s the next column in the, in the model. Okay. So we went in situation, walking around the kitchen, your thought we had to dig a little bit, but we got to, if I don’t give myself a treat, I’m not good enough.

[00:13:10] Basically. I didn’t do anything worth rewarding. And actually, um, Nikki went deeper, you know, which was like, I didn’t do anything worth rewarding. And so I’m not productive. And so I’m worthless basically. Right?

[00:13:23] Nikki: I’ve never thought that for the record.

[00:13:30] Mike: Uh, so unworthy shame failure. So what do you do?

[00:13:35] Sydney: Eat sugar.

[00:13:36] Mike: Yeah, exactly. So you eat sugar and then I like to look at, so the next column is I for intention. What’s the intention. What are you hoping to accomplish by eating sugar?

[00:13:45] Sydney: Well old, like the simplest is to feel better.

[00:13:48] Mike: Yeah, exactly.

[00:13:49] Sydney: You just wanna feel better.

[00:13:50] Mike: Right. So, or just like get rid of this feeling of shame or failure or unworthiness or whatever. Right.

[00:13:58] Nikki: Yeah. Well, and I think, I think it’s because I ultimately, I want to satisfy. It, I wanna satisfy the feeling so that, yeah, so like Sydney said, so that I’ll feel better.

[00:14:11] Mike: yeah. At, yeah. At the end of the day, you’re trying to get rid of it, trying to eliminate it. So, um, and lots of things can, can, uh, we’ll call it, trigger this, but really I’ll trigger means is like, something happens that brings up these thoughts, right? And then that brings up these feelings. It brings up certain memories, it brings up certain whatever, and then you start feeling these things.

[00:14:30] Then you want to go eat sugar to get rid of it. So yeah, exactly. Intentions get rid of it. And then what’s the result. What ends up happening?

[00:14:38] Sydney: It doesn’t go. which is why you do the infinity.

[00:14:42] Mike: Yeah,

[00:14:43] Sydney: You, you just keep looping, cuz you’re like, oh, the feeling’s still kind of there.

[00:14:46] Mike: yeah, yeah.

[00:14:47] Sydney: I kind of.

[00:14:49] Mike: It feels better for a minute and there’s, there’s a chemical reasons for this, right? So, you know, when you feel stress or anxiety or, you know, shame and all that, you know, you have a higher level of cortisol in your brain and body. And so your natural. Thing to do to combat that is to have dopamine released.

[00:15:10] So when you eat sugar, when you watch pornography, when you eat something really fatty, right? Like all of that release is dopamine. So you actually do feel better for a little bit. That’s why you do it. Like you’re not an idiot or like there’s not anything wrong with you. That’s just like how your brain’s built.

[00:15:26] So you’re smart. Basically. You’ve learned, okay. Like I wanna feel better for a little bit. This works, you know, helps me survive. It helps. Food’s designed to give you a really big dopamine release these days, especially junk food or sugary food. So your brain even encodes that even more like, Hey, like this is important.

[00:15:43] I need this to survive. Right. And it helps kids sort of get rid of all this. So there’s something wrong with you that you did this. You just need like a new. System, right. You need a new way to deal with this. You need a new reward, right. And a way to like, manage these emotions. So kind of coming back to it.

[00:16:00] So you, you eat the sugary food, you do feel better for a little bit, but then, you know what happens after that?

[00:16:09] Sydney: it might not be immediate, but it does come back

[00:16:11] Mike: totally.

[00:16:13] Sydney: and then you usually kind of repeat the same cycle.

[00:16:15] Mike: Yep. And here’s the funny part, right? So when we got to the thought, oh, I didn’t do anything worth rewarding. Right. That was kind of the thought that we thought built up all these emotions. So, is falling into this pattern, something worth rewarding.

[00:16:31] Nikki: That’s a great question.

[00:16:33] Mike: Yeah. It, I mean, it’s not, it’s not right. And that’s the funny thing about this model, right? Is that whatever you’re thinking tends to show up in the result line. Right. And the emotions, like you said, they’re gonna show up too, because how do you feel now that you did something that you said you weren’t gonna do?

[00:16:51] Nikki: more shame.

[00:16:53] Mike: Yeah. Right. Yeah.

[00:16:54] Sydney: worth.

[00:16:55] Mike: More shame, less we more failure, right? Exactly. So when a lot of times we can see this written out, you’re like, oh yeah. Like, you know, that’s you see it, right. like, you can see, okay. Yeah. You know, this isn’t the result that I want. Right. So a lot of times. You know, in the moment what needs to happen, right. What needs to be different? So the way that I teach it right, is what we’re trying to build up is some more emotional awareness, right?

[00:17:29] So like in the moments you’re pacing the kitchen, right. You’re walking around, you’re walking around. So instead of like, You’re like, oh, should I do it? Should I not? You know, I, I want some, but I probably shouldn’t. Right. There’s like that battle going on. Um, instead we try to go actually into our emotions right.

[00:17:46] And say, okay, like, what am I actually feeling right now? So Nicki, if you feel shame, where does that show up in your body?

[00:17:56] Nikki: Hmm, good question. Um, I would have to, I think in my throat,

[00:18:02] Mike: Okay.

[00:18:02] Sydney: Me too, for sure.

[00:18:04] Nikki: Ugh. That’s why we work so well together said

[00:18:08] Mike: and

[00:18:09] Sydney: chakra right here.

[00:18:10] Mike: kinda right. Your throat. Okay. And so if you had to, these are kind of the questions that I like to go through, right? So location, where is it? Right. Um, if you had to give it a color, what color would you give it?

[00:18:22] Nikki: Purple

[00:18:23] Mike: Okay.

[00:18:24] Yeah. There’s not like a right or wrong answer. just how you’re experiencing it. Right. What about for you, Cindy?

[00:18:32] Sydney: Um, probably darker brown or black. And this is kind of reminding me of, I, I feel like maybe this was taught to me this kind of idea, even though I had no idea about the model until maybe. Four years ago, which I think is life changing. But I remember teaching this to kids that I would babysit, they would hurt themselves.

[00:18:51] And then to help them calm down, I’d be like, okay, close your eyes now. Like, I want you to visualize the place that hurts and like, what color is it? What shape is it? Like, where is it? And that them focusing on, um, them focusing on the actual area was so sooth. It was so soothing to be able to just like name it, identify it.

[00:19:15] It’s just less intimidating to actually go there because when we’re trying to deal with that emotion, like my, this lump in my throat, we think that the, the world is gonna die, but it’s actually just like a purple lump in your throat. It’s not that big of a deal.

[00:19:27] Mike: exactly. Exactly. Yeah. That’s building up emotional again. What I call strength or resilience, you could call it or whatever words you like, but this, this ability to tolerate an emotion without having to like, get rid of it immediately. Um, it also increased your emotional intelligence. There’s a lot of data on, you know, just naming any motion.

[00:19:46] Like there’s, there have been studies on it decreases the intensity, like it just does. There’s less activation your amygdala, which is kinda like that fight or flight, like high emotion. Part of your brain. So it’s gonna chill that out, uh, when you name the emotion. So, uh, so coming back to it. So the, the, so it’s in your throat, it’s kind of like a brown or purple color.

[00:20:05] Um, does it, uh, if you had to give it a character like, or sorry, temperature first, is it hot, cold kind of nothing in particular,

[00:20:15] Nikki: Mm me, I don’t think I have a temperature

[00:20:19] Mike: not temperature so much.

[00:20:20] Sydney: Mine would feel like it was hot.

[00:20:22] Mike: Well, okay, great. And then like a character to it. Heavy light, um, grainy.

[00:20:30] Nikki: um, like, uh, like a cube, a hard cube.

[00:20:35] Mike: Okay.

[00:20:36] Sydney: Dense one would be dense

[00:20:38] Mike: Okay. Great.

[00:20:39] Sydney: then like thick.

[00:20:40] Mike: Yeah. Good. So the way that I, the steps I like to say, and we didn’t do this first, but like when you start noticing a strong emotion, a good thing to do first is, and you know, one of the things I teach depending on your religious beliefs is, you know, say a prayer to be able to deal with it.

[00:20:53] Like, Hey, I notice a strong emotion coming and then like take a few breaths. Okay. Slow breaths. Also decrease that, you know, intensively emotion. Uh, and then we name it. So like, you guys would say, okay, I’m feeling shame. And then. Uh, feel it, feel it in your body. And that’s what we’re practicing right now.

[00:21:10] Okay. It’s here, it’s in my throat feels this way. So all of this is going like decreasing the intensity emotion. Like each of those steps along the way. Boom, boom, boom, boom, lower, lower, lower, lower. It’s not as intense now. Right? And then at the end of it, you deal with it appropriately. So, uh, the steps I, I teach are breathe, name, feel, deal.

[00:21:32] Right. Which is a way. That kind of rhyme. So it makes easier to remember but,

[00:21:38] Sydney: So breathe name, feel,

[00:21:42] Mike: deal yep. Deal with it. Right. A lot of times, just when you do those first three, you won’t really have to do much else, you know, because the emotion has now calmed down to where maybe you don’t even feel like eating at that point, but if you do right, this is when you have to deal with it in a new way, right.

[00:22:01] You take a different action. So, uh, and there’s lots of different ways to deal with things. I like to think in terms of, you know, body, mind, heart, and spirits, like physically, if you’re feeling shame, we know eating’s not something that we necessarily want to do, but you know, what’s something physically that you guys might recommend your clients or do yourself if you’re feeling that kind of shameful feeling

[00:22:25] Sydney: well, I think that one of them was to maybe write something down, kind of like maybe even using a model like this and, and maybe they don’t have. Time to do a whole model, but they could even just like maybe instead of just trying to bounce it around in their head, cuz some people have a hard time really making some concrete, forming concrete thoughts about this, but write, maybe writing it down is a, is a physical thing that they can do that helps them could be outside of their head.

[00:22:51] Mike: No huge. Yeah. And writing it down is, um, again, a gigantic one to decrease the intensive emotions. Uh, you know, if we think body, mind, heart, spirit, that kind of does all of them at once, right. It’s cuz you’re using your body. It’s activat in your mind emotionally, you’re kinda getting things out and you know, a spiritual kind of meaning sense.

[00:23:09] That’s all part of it too. So writing huge, huge one. Um, any other ideas kind on the physical side of things that might be.

[00:23:17] Nikki: So many, so many we’ve, I’ve got a sweet client right now. She’s got a list of three things. She either needs to call a friend

[00:23:23] Mike: Mm-hmm

[00:23:24] Nikki: or she needs to tap on her upper lip underneath her nose. It’s an acupressure point that, you know, calms that cortisol. Um, or she goes to take a nap.

[00:23:34] Mike: Yeah, sure.

[00:23:35] Nikki: A lot of times when we, you know, decision fatigue, you’re just super tired.

[00:23:39] You’re not in a good place to make a decision right now. And so just taking a 10 minute reset can, can change your whole world.

[00:23:46] Sydney: Yeah. And I think having those things, like you just talked about listing them. That’s actually a really important thing that I feel like I’ve shared with clients too, is that having a list? So they don’t cuz cuz your brain automatically wants to go to that easy fix cuz like sugar or pornography or whatever it is, those are easy fixes.

[00:24:04] They, they provide a lot of bang for your buck. You’re like, cuz you have a lot of sweet or a lot of, uh, pleasure or something like that. But then when you have that moment of decision, you. Hmm, should I sit down and read a book or read candy? Like, you know what I mean? Like, or, or even even harder is trying to think of what to do is the hardest thing.

[00:24:24] And so having that list ready is super important too. So just having things like Nikki mentioned things like going for a walk, uh, turning on some fun, upbeat music, um, like calling someone, texting someone, just something to shift your, uh, shift, your

[00:24:40] thought pattern.

[00:24:41] Mike: absolutely. Yeah. And so great. So you guys have a good list and sounds like you, you work with that. So like there’s lots of ways to deal with any emotion effectively. Um, but yeah, so, so again, the. Breathe, take a few breaths, notice it like name it, shame. I feel it here and then have some kind of plan to deal with it in the moment.

[00:24:59] The other thing that I recommend is having some sort of reward for this, right? So you’re trying to basically break a bad habit here. I feel shame I eat right. Is kind of the, you know, If we look at the trigger, feel shame. The action is I eat the reward. Is the dopamine associated with that? So what we’re trying to train is a new habit.

[00:25:16] The new habit is I feel any emotion. I breathe, I name it. I feel it. I deal with it appropriately, but then you wanna attach some kind of reward to it. So, uh, again, it’s a idea from B Castillo kind of apply it to, to, this is just giving yourself some kind of reward that you track. Right. And you’re trying to get to like a hundred times that you can feel.

[00:25:37] Eating sugar and not doing it. Right. And so, you know, and it doesn’t have to be a big one, you know, it can be a small, okay. I felt shame. I pace the kitchen and then I went and sat down, bang, you give yourself a reward. Right. And so whether that’s like a jar that you’re filling up with beads, or like, I use that nap called tally T a L L Y you’re just like, tap it.

[00:25:56] Right. Boom gives you 1, 1, 2, 3, 4. and so you just see that number go up and that’s like, Bing, Bing gives you a little dopamine hit. Right. And so now you’re starting. Build this new reward pathway, this new habit pathway where I feel shame, I breathe, I name, I feel I deal with it. And then I give myself a little reward that my brain can see and track and say, Hey, like I’m making progress here.

[00:26:21] Um, so that’s basically. In the moment, what you would do now for like AE sort of longer term solution. What you’d wanna do is come back and really kind of see if we can’t rework this model, right? The thoughts that are driving this because at the end of the day, you know, If you’re consistently walking around with thoughts, that don’t generate shame.

[00:26:46] you know, that’s, that’s gonna be the longer term, uh, result. Right. That’s gonna be the longer term, uh, fix for this, but in the moment, right. You don’t, you don’t necessarily do that right. At first. That’s why you need kind of the, uh, initial skills and it takes some time to build new beliefs and all that, but so let’s say right.

[00:27:03] Okay. So I’m pacing the kitchen. I did this, right. I, I went through this, I gave myself that little reward and now, you know, I am gonna want to go back and like go through this model and figure out what happened. So again, walk we’re in that same situation. We’re walking around the kitchen.

[00:27:21] What’s the result that we want at the end of that.

[00:27:25] Nikki: We want to be freed of the desire to need something.

[00:27:29] Mike: Okay. Yep. So that’s kind of the long term result for sure.

[00:27:33] Nikki: Oh, we, oh, you want a short term?

[00:27:35] Mike: No, that’s good.

[00:27:36] Nikki: Okay.

[00:27:36] Sydney: And I think that what really is at the heart of that is that you’re satisfied with yourself. You don’t need external.

[00:27:43] Nikki: Sid and I love to talk about all the time. There’s always gonna be a desire for connection, always. and food in our culture is a tool to create connection and being able to take it or leave it, I think is what we’re talking about here to either to use food as that connection, or to find some other way to connect.

[00:28:02] Mike: Good. So, you know, find, uh, healthy ways to connect could be in the result that we want. free from that desire or satisfied with myself, those are all good. Right? And so if we work backwards, you know, you’re walking around the kitchen, you remind yourself of this result. I want, I wanna feel free from that desire. Right. I wanna feel satisfied with myself. You know, we kind of talked about what actions you would need to take, but what are like some of the actions that you need to.

[00:28:27] Nikki: To finish my meal and to wash my plate and put it in the dishwasher and move on to something else.

[00:28:31] Mike: Yeah. Move on. Right. you could say use the skills of, emotional management use, breathe, name, field deal, right. basically the action that you want is. instead of eating, doing something else 

[00:28:43] Sydney: Yeah, something that isn’t gonna give us the negative results. Cuz I feel like the, the ones actions that we do take when we emotionally eat is just driving the negative results. It’s kind of perpetuating the cycle.

[00:28:55] Mike: Exactly. Yeah. So.

[00:28:56] Sydney: the shame or the whatever.

[00:28:58] Mike: Right. Exactly. So we were taking these new actions here. We’re moving on. Uh, we’re using our skills, we’re doing something different, right. We’re writing down or whatever the action is. Right. And the intention there, the, the nice thing is these intentions line up. So in the old one, right, your thought and your feeling was like shame and all that.

[00:29:15] your intention was to get rid of the feeling, but it didn’t do it. Right. It’s like your, your model’s out of integrity there. Like it’s not lining up and then you get into problems. You don’t feel good about yourself and all of that. So here, you know, your intention’s gonna be lined up.

[00:29:30] Your intention is just to be again free from the desire to eat something sweet. We’ll just use that one.

[00:29:34] Sydney: So could I just pause there for just a little second, because I’m really familiar with the EO model and that’s what I’ve used, but I recognize the intentions are incredibly powerful. I’m just wondering why you chose to use that in your, in your practice, in your,

[00:29:50] Mike: Yeah. So, you know, I work mainly with guys in their relationships and what I really believe is that what gets picked up by other people is not really so much what we do, but the intention. Behind it. And so I just thought it was really important to just like, draw that out and make it really clear to everybody, like what was happening.

[00:30:10] cuz a lot of times, there’s like the classic example. So a guy will, for example, wash the dishes. At his house, right? There’s nothing wrong with doing that by itself. The problem is the rest of what’s happening in this model, right? The thought behind it is if I do this, my wife will have sex with me.

[00:30:25] The feeling is like anticipation. The action is wash the dishes. The intention is actually to manipulate your wife into having sex with you. Right. And so you feel kind of anxious your intentions there. That’s what your wife picks up. And that’s what she’s not attracted. Right. So like, come on, come on Mike.

[00:30:41] Like I’m washing the dishes and it’s not working. Right. And you’re like, well, it’s all this other stuff, right? The rest of your model’s off, like you guys wash the dishes that there’s nothing wrong with that. But if your thought is like, Hey, I wanna serve my wife. This is something nice. I can do your feeling is.

[00:30:55] Love right. Your intention is to do something kind for her, right. First of all, you’ve already won because your result is in line with what you can do. Right. Like I wanna show her concern and I did it. Right. So you can feel good about that. Just so happens. That’s also much more likely for her to be attracted to you at the end of that,

[00:31:14] Sydney: I totally get it. So it’s almost like, cuz I feel like the place that I would always put intentions for me in doing a model would be in the thought line and it is in the thought line, but you really just highlight it. Like what is your intention? Got? Got it. I love it.

[00:31:28] Mike: right. Yeah. And I found it useful and like we point out a lot of different intentions, that are common in in relationships, in, in my program here. Like it’s almost always the intention is avoid this emotion, right. With the emotional eating. That’s almost always, basically is that’s it like, that’s the intention.

[00:31:47] And so. It just helps highlight that, avoid it. And then you see the result is I actually didn’t avoid it at all. Right. So it just kind of

[00:31:54] Sydney: Showing that lack of integrity. And maybe why it’s perpetuating the cycle in this model of emotional eating.

[00:32:00] Mike: yeah. Any other questions on that?

[00:32:03] Sydney: No, I think that that totally makes sense. I, I like it. I think intentions actually are kind of magical

[00:32:08] Mike: Yeah.

[00:32:09] Sydney: that they show up in like the vibrations around us that people get close to us and they can like feel our intentions almost so.

[00:32:15] Mike: a hundred percent. No. Yeah, I believe that very much. Um, so again, so, so coming back to like our more useful model, so you’re walking around the kitchen, the action you wanna take is to be able to move on, do something different, right? Uh, use your skills, the intentions to be free from that desire to eat something sweet.

[00:32:33] So what feeling would you need to have, to be able to kind of use these skills or move on or do something different? It could be different ones, but. What would be some useful feelings.

[00:32:43] Nikki: Worth it.

[00:32:46] Mike: Okay. Yeah. Worthy, sure. Worth it worthy.

[00:32:50] Sydney: Love is a super powerful one. So if you can get all the way to, I love me and I’ve got myself now and I’ve got my future self

[00:32:56] Mike: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I like that. Right. Great. I love me. I love myself. I love my future self. So I’m putting, I’m plugging those into the thought line, right? Cuz these are ones that can help you generate those emotions. Love myself, So worth it. Love.

[00:33:09] Sydney: I know how to handle this. Like I, I know how to handle craving sugar.

[00:33:14] Mike: Yeah. I know how to handle this will be a thought right? to me, what that would generate is confidence, right? Like, or even just like faith in myself, you know?

[00:33:24] Nikki: Yeah, that’s what I was thinking because a lot of people, when they do it, you know, for years and years and years, they don’t trust themselves anymore, they don’t have any confidence in their

[00:33:32] Sydney: like, I always go for it.

[00:33:34] Nikki: Yeah. This is just who I am. That’s their thought. And so it’s like they have no self worth, no confidence in that arena.

[00:33:40] Mike: Yeah. I like to point out to people too, kinda the difference between, um, like self-esteem and like faith in yourself and confidence, cuz like you’re you’re right on. Your confidence is built over time. So, Jody Moore uses this example where she’ll be like, how confident are you that you can pour a glass of water?

[00:34:00] Sydney: Totally

[00:34:01] Mike: Right.

[00:34:02] Sydney: cause of lots of history there

[00:34:03] Mike: Yeah, cuz you’ve done it so many times correctly. Right? So that’s how confidence is built. Now, when you’re building a new habit, you actually can’t really have confidence in that sense yet. So I think people get kind of beat themselves up. They’re like, oh, I don’t feel confident, but it, it just takes like more faith.

[00:34:20] Right. It’s just like, well, I just try it. Right. I think I can do this. Or even like, kind of using past wins, like saying, okay, you know, maybe I haven’t done great with this eating, but like this other habit I’ve been able to beat or change or whatever. Um, and then that can kind of build a little bit of like a combination of maybe faith and confidence

[00:34:41] But, but the way you’ll like, be confident that I won’t overeat is when you just do it a bunch of times. Right. That’s

[00:34:47] Sydney: So in that situation I’m would you say that. So it’s, you’re not confident in that thing yet. Let’s say emotional eating, but, but would you say like the faith in yourself might come from also thinking like, but I do think I am consistent in other things. Like, I am good at other things. And so I have faith that I could become good at this too,

[00:35:05] Mike: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. That’s yeah. Just kind of like clueing into your own identity, right? Uh, if the faithful person like, look like I’m a daughter of God here, like I can overcome this. Like I can tune into that spiritual power too, and like overcome this, um, can be a helpful one. But, um, but yeah, I mean the bottom line is you just try to get to a thought here.

[00:35:29] That’s like, It’s gonna generate the emotions that you want. Right. even like acknowledging, just saying like, look, you know, I have failed this a bunch of times. It doesn’t mean I have to this time, this time I’m not going to. Right. And that can be kinda like a nice little bridge too, for you.

[00:35:46] That’s just like, okay. Yeah. But my past doesn’t have to define my future. Yeah.

[00:35:51] Sydney: maybe even a thought about, um, I’m a, my future self, like from now on, I can totally do this. And when I, when I don’t, that doesn’t mean I have to just go, you know, I’m not a hundred percent or like, maybe that could be a thought too, like I’m not a hundred percenter, but it’s okay. If I, if I. and working up to being a hundred percenter,

[00:36:10] Mike: sure, exactly. The other thing with the, like the tracking, if you decide to do that is you don’t erase it. Like, let’s say you have like five beads in your jar. You don’t like dump ’em out. You know, the next time that you do that, what you do is you get really detailed about like, looking at what happened.

[00:36:27] Like you really go into this model and you’re like, okay, like, let me be serious with myself here. What really was I thinking? What really was I feeling? How am I gonna ship that up next time? And then you rehearse that, right? So I’m, I’m really big on this in my program now is. Like, I, I could call myself a coach and you guys do too.

[00:36:45] Like when you coach a team, like you have that team run practice. Right. And you have that team run practice until they are great at it. Like, um, this one, uh, the Alabama football coach, he says, you know, you practice not until you get it right. But until you can’t get it wrong. And so that’s why I’m really implementing hard with my guys now is like, okay, like you messed up fine, but like, look at what happened.

[00:37:09] And. Run that like mentally rehearse that I’m telling them a hundred times, I haven’t found data that says like how many times to do it. That just seems like a good number for now. but like, um, but yeah, just so like it’s ready to go. There’s um, there was a study I just looked up that have these like three groups of basketball players and.

[00:37:32] One group of them. So they shot free throws. And one group of them like practiced stream free throws for a week. The other group just did a mental rehearsal of it for a week. And then the last group did a crossword puzzle which is like to just like control for like the mental like activity, I guess. but, the, the free throw group improved by like 20 something percent, which you expect.

[00:37:52] Right. But the mental rehearsal group actually did better. Like they did. 25% or something. So you figure like something so physical, you know, this stuff, there’s a physical element, but like so much of it’s mental. So if you can like have that mental rehearsal and just be like, ready. So next time you’re walking around the kitchen, you’re just like, Bing, I know what to do.

[00:38:11] Like, here’s my thought process. That’s ready to go. I’ve already rehearsed this a bunch of times. Like I’m ready. It’s like practice. And then there’s game time. Like you’re ready for game time at that point. That’s what I, uh, teach and recommend, right? Is you dig into this and you just decide next time that happens.

[00:38:29] Here’s how I’m going to think. Here’s how I’m gonna feel. Here’s what I’m gonna do. So you’re just ready. You’re ready for.

[00:38:35] Sydney: I really, really like that. I think that so powerful.

[00:38:39] Nikki: I think I’ve read the same. One of my favorite books called the talent code. It’s the same type of thing where it’s like, is there true talent or is it just, they call it, he calls it deep practice and it, and it involves just, yeah. Mentally rehearsing the power of mentally rehearsing things.

[00:38:53] So yeah, it totally resonates with me on that.

[00:38:55] Mike: Yeah.

[00:38:56] Sydney: And the nice thing about that is you’re kind of like in the driver’s seat, right? Like you’re, it’s just in your head, you’re not in your kitchen doing the infinity circle. You’re like, I get to control this. It’s like a magical, uh, stage in your head.

[00:39:07] Mike: exactly. Exactly. Yeah. I like to like how you said stage, that’s the way I think about it. It’s like, you’re the character in your life and you actually get to write your script like you really do. And so it does take some thought, you know, and to create that mentally, but then you practice it and then you’re, you know, ready.

[00:39:24] You’re that new person.

[00:39:26] Nikki: This is awesome. this is so good. It is been really powerful for me. I just, I don’t know if you felt the mood shift as we’ve been working through that second part of the model. I mean, my purple cube is.

[00:39:43] Sydney: if people are like baby stepping, like, you know, new newb, Saw, it might also sound wonderful, like how we just walked through it, but it might sound super confusing too. So what do you say to them? How do kinda like take a next step in

[00:39:56] Mike: Yeah. Yeah. So I’d say, you know, just work with you guys, right? Like if they’re trying to overcome emotional eating, like but the, the truth is like to get good at it. It does take some coaching. That’s, that’s the truth. Like you, you can try this on your own. Right. And you will get some benefit from it, but if you want to go fast and if you want to get results, Better results faster the way you do that is by coaching, right?

[00:40:30] Nikki: we did not, we did not write that paragraph out for him. He totally just said that impromptu.

[00:40:35] Sydney: But, but with that in mind also, what if somebody would like to work with you?

[00:40:40] Mike: Yeah. So yeah, if they wanna work with me, so I’ve got a podcast too, it’s called strong men, strong marriages, and you can kinda start there and then if you’re like kinda ready and you’re like, okay, yeah, I’ve got some issues in my marriage that, you know, I feel like Mike can help with. And again, that would be, you know, there’s just, uh, the mentally emotional or sexual intimacy.

[00:40:58] Isn’t there. It’s not where you want it to be. Or it’s more severe, like you’re trying to overcome infidelity, emotional or sexual infidelity. Uh, issues of faith, you know, differences in faith, stuff like that. Or like you’re looking at a separation, you know, anywhere on that spectrum, you know, that you want some help.

[00:41:14] Uh, so yeah, strong men, strong marriages.com. Uh, my website is that strong men, strong marriages.com. Um, you can click on work with me. You fill out an application, then we talk and see if you’d be a good fit. 

[00:41:26] Sydney: Thank you so much for joining us today, Dr. Mike, our listeners, we hope that this has given you a little bit of hope and a really valuable tool to be able to, take your eating your life, even everything to the next level, to get unstuck from that infinity circle in your kitchen or wherever you have the show up for you.

[00:41:48] If you need some help implementing that, we want you to come and have a consult with us, have us, help you to take that next step to get unstuck. We have a few a week, where we can offer a free session for about 20 minutes.

[00:42:02] Go to our website, coaching with Nikki and sydney.com/free consult. 

[00:42:08] Nikki: have a great week guys. 

[00:42:10] If you want to permanently change your lifestyle to nourish your body in ways that create the foundation for wellness. A really great place to start is with our sugar. 

[00:42:20] Sydney: It’s a free digital package that you can use to help you actually remember the five things that you need to be doing every day. 

[00:42:28] Get the sugar bundle for free by going to coaching with Nikki and sydney.com backslash sugar. We’d love it. If you would rate and review us on apple podcasts, it will help us to reach more people. 

[00:42:43] Nikki: The information on this podcast has not been evaluated by the FDA and is not intended to diagnose, treat. Or cure any disease. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice, treatment and or diagnosis of a qualified, licensed professional. 

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