How to Overcome an Intense Craving

My husband comes happily into the room, proudly holding a Haagen Dazs ice cream bar.

He plops down on the sofa next to me and turns on our show.

I listen to the crunch of the perfectly flavored, smooth chocolate coating and see him bite into the creamy vanilla ice cream.

It smells delicious

I am so focused on his ice cream bar I have no idea what is happening on the show we are watching.

I fight an internal battle-

“I’m going to have a bar myself”

“No, you don’t want all that sugar”

“Just this once”

“If you have one you’ll open the flood gates to having them all the time”

“I haven’t had ice cream in forever. I’ll just have the one tonight”

I battled with myself the entire time he ate that ice cream bar.

BUT I did not give in to temptation.

Want to know how I overcame the intense craving?

I used the 3rd foundational pillar for achieving your goals.

I call it- Play the Tape All the Way Through to the End

When we have a craving we get hung up in a mind loop of picturing the food we want (in this case the ice cream bar).

We think about how it will taste, salivate over the smell,

remember fun times we have eaten it in the past and basically use our minds to convince ourselves how great this food is.

What we don’t do is play that imagination reel all the way until the end- how we feel AFTER we’ve given in and eaten it.

We forget the fact that the food stops tasting so amazing after the first few bites.

We ignore the fact that too much sugar can bring you up on a high and crash you down later.

We overlook the fact that we feel bad about ourselves and start to doubt ourselves because we are breaking a promise and commitment we made to ourselves.

So, as I sat on the sofa imagining myself eating one of those delicious Haagen Dazs bars I played the tape all the way through.

I started with seeing myself get up, go over to the kitchen, open the freezer and grab a bar. 

I came back over to the sofa and had to answer all the questions, “I thought you weren’t eating sugar anymore?” “You’re going to have dessert?”

Then I pictured myself taking the first bite- the crunch of the chocolate, cold of the ice cream on my tongue.

Then I take another bite. And another. Until I start to notice that slight film you get on your teeth after eating ice cream and how thirsty I was.

I felt how full I would feel and slightly sick to my stomach from all the sugar.

I felt the heavy feeling of disappointment in myself, made even worse by the fact that the bar didn’t even taste as good as I remembered.

And that is how I resisted.

Next time you have an intense craving try playing the tape all the way to the end. The items we crave, never taste as good as we think they will and it is not worth losing faith in yourself if you give in.

Use the 3rd pillar and keep your goals and intentions.

Have you ever had an intense craving like I had? Let me know about it and if you gave in or not.

Do you think playing the tape through to the end will help you resist next time?

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