CLICK HERE to read my complete review of Susan Albers’ book, 50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food, which is posted at my StoppingNation blog. I really like this book because it’s practical, doable and readable. Albers has an upbeat, can-do message and she doesn’t fall into the trap of telling us one sad (as well as boring and predictable) story after another. This one small distinction makes her stand way above and way apart from the pack of authors writing about eating disorders.
Albers says that people are afraid of doing breathing exercises because they aren’t familiar with the technique, and they think the breathing exercise will take too long. Breathing, however, is a natural activity. You do it constantly, without event thinking about it. So there’s nothing special to learn. All you have to do is pay attention to your breathing, and that’s not very hard. Also, the breathing exercise only needs to be done for a very brief period of time, until the desired result is accomplished. Remember, all it takes is one decisive moment to stop yourself from eating when you’re not hungry, and this is one way to do it.
Here’s Albers’ recommended breathing technique:
1. Sit or stand comfortably.
2. Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose.
3. Hold that breath for a few seconds.
4. Pretend that you have a straw in your mouth and exhale a short burst of air forcefully through the small opening. Blow the entire breath out in little spurts of air. With each puff out, visualize blowing away your urge to eat — this is my advice.
5. Repeat steps 2 through 4 six to ten times.