Think yourself slim: keep a journal

by Lynn Cardy on Friday, 25 September 2009

Keeping a food diary kick-starts so many weight-loss therapies, but bestselling writer Julia Cameron discovered that her Unblocking Creativity writing courses had participants shedding pounds as well as inhibitions.

"Students often come to me pudgy and depressed. I tell them to write. Self reflection soon regulates overeating. Pounds begin to drop away, writing metabolises their lives, they no longer overeat to block feelings. And once we catch on that we are overeating as a blocking device, it becomes harder to reach for food and easier to take yourself to the page instead."

What's the trick?
Julia's book The Writing Diet is full of on-page exercises:

Write morning pages to get in touch with your feelings rather than blocking them with food. Set your alarm an hour early and write three pages of free-form writing. Write honestly about how you're feeling. Let it all out. Keep your hand moving and follow your thoughts.

Keep a journal. Note your feelings about food. Each day write down everything you eat and drink and how you feel. Often you'll find that you're eating to blur your clarity and avoid action or tricky situations.

Walk your talk. Take a 20-minute walk, and get clear on your day's priorities. You'll go into the rest of the day with a lighter heart. After your walk, write down the insights and inspirations that came to you. Find more inspiration in The Writing Diet by Julia Cameron (Jeremy P Tarcher/Penguin, £9.38),

Discover other ways to lose weight without dieting 


Control your hunger pangs

Manage portion sizes

Kill those cravings

Imagine a slimmer you


Find a body buddy

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