Many of us have felt tied to presence of the little square box in our bathrooms. Whether it’s with a sense of trepidation each morning, or out of habit, we step on and wait for the results. This smug, often shame-inducing bathroom scale seems to revel in a bit of schadenfreude as it spits back a number that we’ll inextricably tie in with our sense of self-worth. And the bad news often colors the rest of our day, and mood, a dark gray.
While we aren’t necessarily proposing that you throw that machine out or smash it à la Office Space, what we *do* suggest is a different ‘scale’ of sorts – one that will serve you now and well into the future. It involves way less shame and is a springboard into knowing yourself better while quite possibly helping you lose a few unwanted pounds.
What is it? The Hunger Scale.
The tool seems simple enough, but don’t let it fool you. Its power lies in helping you answer some rather complex questions about yourself.
A client recently expressed this beautifully when she mentioned, “I feel like I don’t know how to fill this out. Am I the only one who feels out of touch with her body?“
Our answer was, “oh, definitely not. You’re in good company”….because it’s true. Many of us have had similar past experiences when it came to HOW we ate. Why?
Think back to elementary school. You had maybe 30 minutes to process through the line to get your lunch, eat, and talk with your friends before it was recess or back to class. This, of course, continued for many years into higher levels of education.
If you were part of the “clean plate club” at home, you were often eating out of alignment with your true fullness cues.
When it came to work, typically your first job(s) would give you a 15 minute break to maybe shove down some food.
Because of our early experiences in life, all of us have gotten used to driving and eating, eating and working, and eating just because food is around. Rarely do we know what hunger looks like until we are ravenous or light-headed…or what fullness looks like until our pants start biting into our belly skin.
We have lost a connection with our bodies over the years because of all these factors and more. Even if your stomach was growling during an early morning class, you might have told yourself, “shut up body, I can’t eat until lunch.” Perhaps being made to finish your plate involved inner dialogue like, “yeah, I know you’re uncomfortable, body, but you need to make more room and eat this because I don’t want to sit here; I want to go outside and play.”
If you want to read more about our connection, or lack thereof, with our bodies, check out Your Body: Whispers or Screams?
Understandably, this claim seems a bit brazen, but we truly believe that this Hunger Scale tool is the only ‘scale’ you’ll ever need. When you are attuned to your body’s need for fuel versus its need for comfort, you start being able to differentiate between stress or emotional cues and the body’s refueling requirements.
Since getting in touch with her hunger and satiety cues, one client remarked, “I feel like I used to always be eating. I don’t do that anymore.”
We’re gifting you our Hunger Scale template here, with some parts filled in to assist and guide you.
Every one has different signals of physical (and psychological) hunger, so fill it out according to your own unique patterns. If you’re finding it a bit harder than you thought, you’re not alone and we are here to help.