Hey everyone, hope you all had a wonderful weekend. We had so much fun and I have to say the best part of losing weight is being able to live life again. We went out and did a painting class with Zowie Saturday and really enjoyed it.
So, I have decided to change up the way I am doing journal prompts. I am just so busy these days that it is hard to make a post every day. I have decided to do a weekly prompt. Each week will have a theme and will include a prompt for each day. This way I only have to prepare one post each week and you will have the prompts for the entire week so you can journal when it is convenient for you. I will still include worksheets for you when appropriate.
I do want to take a minute and say thank you to everyone who has reached out with positive feedback about the journal prompts. These are activities that I am doing myself, things that I have created and researched just because I love journaling. I do have a master’s degree in addiction therapy so I have a lot of knowledge about different techniques and activities to cope with addiction. However, I am doing this research for myself and then sharing. I have done the research so why not share? I am not trying to teach or preach to anyone. Please know that I would never pretend or say that I am an expert in food addiction journaling. These are just things that are helping me and I thought they may help someone else.
This week’s theme is STRESS!
Stress is a huge part of our lives. We all have stressors all around us these days. I know for me stress is a huge trigger for me to have cravings and want to overeat. I have completely thrown in the towel on a successful diet just because of stress. So I felt like this might be a topic that others struggle with as well.
For Monday we are going to focus on identifying and recognizing our stressors. Sometimes it’s not that easy to figure out what is causing our stress. There have been times I have been super stressed out and not even realized it. So today take some time to write down all of the things stressing you out.
There are several different areas in our life that can cause us stress. Think about stress at home, work, with family and friends, our health, and any other areas you can think of. I have created a worksheet you can download below or just write them out in your journal. Keep it handy we will build on it all week.
Now that we know our stressors we need to figure out what our habits are around stress. For today keep a log in your journal (or using our stress log printable) of all of your stress. Every time one of the stressors you identified on Monday happens (or a new stressor) jot it down in your log. Write down what the stressor was, what caused it, and what your reaction was. Keep your log close by we are going to do more with that through the week.
Once you have a day’s worth of stress log it’s time to reflect. Write out your thoughts about your reactions to stress. Did you get angry? Did you eat? Did you stuff your feelings? Whatever you did write it down. Look at patterns in your reactions. For me, stress tends to make me want sweets. You can also look for patterns in your stressors. Do they happen at certain times? Is there a certain person that causes your stress? Do you have more stress at work? You can write these in your journal as a prompt. If you are using our free worksheets just write it on the back of your stress log.
“The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.” -Unknown
So, we know what our stressors are, we have a picture of daily stress and how we react to it, and we have learned about our habits and patterns around stress. Now it’s time to learn some healthy coping skills. There are a million ways to cope with stress, I have put together a list of 45 ideas (you can print it out below). You just need to figure out what works for you and then stick with that. It might be going on a walk, reading a book, watching your favorite TV show, taking a bath. Everyone is different, so if you don’t know what your stress relief is outside of food then try a bunch of things to figure out what you like. Write down in your journal a list of coping skills that you can use if you feel stressed and have that urge to eat because of it. You can pull out your list and do one of the coping skills to overcome that craving. This is one of my favorite types of journal entries. You can get super creative and decorate your coping skills sheet any way you want.
For Friday let’s try to use some of those new skills. Create a coping with stress log in your journal (or print ours below). This is a lot like the stress log but this time we are going to try one of our coping skills. So write down which coping skill you used and if it worked out for you. Did the coping skill work? If not why not? If it did why was it successful? This is a helpful log to keep on hand honestly. I have started my stress log a few weeks ago and I have been keeping it off and on throughout the week. It’s given me a ton of insight into what is stressing me, how I’m reacting to it, and what coping skills are working the best for me. Now I have a shortlist of coping skills that work that I can go to quickly. I keep it on hand in case I need it.
The Weekend 2/1/20-2/2/20:
“Give your stress wings and let it fly away.” -Terri Guillemets
Well, that was a productive week! Time to reflect on what you learned. Write out in your journal what you learned this week. Just free-write whatever comes to mind. What did you learn about stress? What did you learn about your reaction to stress? Were you surprised by what you learned? What did you learn about coping skills? Will you continue to use these skills?
Let me know in the comments what you got out of these prompts! I’d love to know what you guys learned from the week!