Over the past four decades, Green Mountain at Fox Run has helped thousands of women end weight loss struggles with eating, exercise and body image, make long-term healthy lifestyle changes and lose weight permanently. This weight loss blog helps women navigate these changes.

Stop Obsessing: Keeping the Peace through the Holiday and Beyond

Today’s post is by Kari Anderson, DBH, our binge eating specialist at Green Mountain. Last weekend, she led our first emotional and binge eating intensive weekend retreat. She’ll be a regular contributor to A Weight Lifted, where you’ll learn more about her trademark “of course!” 

Obsessing, Holiday Stress and Binge Eating

obsessing holiday binge eatingAs I reflect on the Binge and Emotional Eating Weekend Intensive held at Green Mountain at Fox Run last weekend, I get a feeling of peace and calm.

You see, the binge eating mind is continually obsessing.

  • When will I get to be alone to eat?
  • What will I eat?
  • Where will I stop to get it?
  • How will I hide the evidence?

1The Frenzy And Excitement Stage

I call this the frenzy and excitement stage. There isn’t any obsessing when the binge occurs, because that’s one of the purposes of bingeing, to shut off the brain for a while.

2The Self-Loathing Stage

Unfortunately, the aftermath of the binge creates more obsession. It’s the self-loathing stage.

I did it again, I’m such a failure!
I feel like crap! I’ve got to get control of myself!

3The Planning Stage

Then comes the planning phase. This is the obsessional focus on finding the perfect diet to get me back into control.

  • Counting weeks on the calendar and calculating
  • Finding a food log or journal that hasn’t been written in before
  • Creating a grocery list
  • Getting rid of (or eating) the things in the house I will not be eating once I start “being perfect”
  • Obsessing about losing weight so I can finally live my life and be happy

Read This Related Article:
When Is a Diet Not a Diet?
This is of course, lasts until I am stressed out and in need of some serious “me time” and I start obsessing about when I can get alone again to eat…Regardless of what obsessional phase I am in, I’m still obsessing.

Lessons From Our Binge Eating Intensive Weekend

In one short weekend, I saw peace and calm. I saw hope in the faces of those who participated in our intensive.

There is something liberating about sitting with people “who get you”, talking and talking…and talking until the shame becomes dimmer and dimmer.

Obsessions with food, the binge, self-loathing and diets fade away as the participants are given tools and strategies for a new way of thinking, feeling and being.

Slowly leaving fear behind and embracing empowerment. I can manage my stress. I can nourish my body. I can surround myself with things that I love. I can speak to myself with compassion. I can take care of my brain and my body, reducing my vulnerability. I can give myself a break. I can stop isolating and let others help me. These are a few of the messages that resonated among the participants.

One weekend can’t fix all your problems, but can begin to give you a Pathway for peace, a way out of the obsession and into the calm.

Empowerment: From Obsession To Peace And Calm

How can we maintain this state of being into the holiday season?

1Maintain connection.

The holiday season is an extremely lonely time. Time to think, time to obsess. Focus on others, check in to see how they are doing.

2Surround yourself with your favorite things.

Stimulate your senses with your favorite sights, smells, sounds, tastes and sensations of the season.

3Take care of your brain so you can think clearly.

Get enough sleep, reduce your distractions, eat nourishing meals and get your blood pumping with movement. Remember, it is not about “being good”, it’s about “thinking well”.

4Lastly, comfort yourself with self-compassion.

Validate your thoughts and feelings. Approach yourself with non-judgment.

Tis the season! Fa La La La La, La La, La La.

Of course!


We’ll be offering more emotional and binge eating intensive weekends in 2015, dates to be announced. In the meantime, our core program has been enhanced with a special track to address emotional and binge eating, beyond what we have historically offered. According to those who have taken part in the program to date, the combination is powerful.

Learn More The Pathway℠  To Overcoming Binge Eating

Healthy Living on the Road: It’s Not About Perfection

By on 12/10/2014

We’ve all been there — we’re going along in the direction we want to go, then life happens. In today’s post, Beth tells us how she turned a common challenge for weight-worried women into a learning opportunity. It’s all good! Why Perfection Sabotages Your Health Efforts I haven’t been posting recently because I was driving across the country with my 22-year-old daughter, from Philadelphia […] Read more »

healthy eating on the road

A Young Women’s Emotional Eating and Healthy Weight Retreat

By on 12/09/2014

Do you know a young woman aged 18-25 who feels like this? We see them frequently at Green Mountain. They’re overwhelmed with life, often caught in transition from teenage high school years to college, or looking at completing college soon and have no idea what to do with their lives. Combine that with worry over eating, weight, body image — […] Read more »

college women winter break program weight loss

The Binge Eating Diaries: Getting Through the Holidays

By on 12/04/2014

Okay ladies (and gents!). We made it through Thanksgiving… one of (if not THE) biggest “food” holidays out there. And as a recovering binge eater, it remains one of the most challenging days of the year for me. For a lot of people, it’s the ONE day of the year when it feels socially acceptable to completely overeat. But for […] Read more »


Our Annual End-of-Year Special: Save in 2015

By on 12/03/2014

Our participants tell us they wait for it all year — when we announce special savings for our pioneering non-diet healthy weight program. So here it is! Enroll by midnight, December 31, 2014, and you can save 20% off your stay beginning January through April 4, 2015. Alumnae (those who have been through our 4-week program) save 25%. Reserve By Midnight, […] Read more »

save 20 percent in 2015
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