Buffering lessens the impact of something. It softens the blow. Most people buffer to feel better, to soften or diminish negative feelings.
People buffer to feel better in a variety of ways. Some exercise all the time, some go shopping, some drink alcohol, some use social media, some binge Netflix, some watch porn. Some of us buffer with food. We eat to avoid negative emotions.
Our brain is designed to seek pleasure and avoid pain. Food provides lots of pleasure.
When I learned about buffering, I realized I did it all the time. I would come home after a hard day at work and eat a quesadilla (or two) before dinner. I deserved it, right, after that hard day. Or, I would be home alone and bored and eat a pint of ice cream to ease my boredom. The proof that I buffered my feelings, showed on body. Obviously, I was buffering a lot!
My brain was really skilled at seeking pleasure and avoiding pain. I avoided pain by eating it.
I decided to make a conscious effort to not buffer with food. I had to be willing to feel all my feelings, including the negative ones.
What I discovered was yes, the negative feelings felt uncomfortable but I didn’t die. AND, they didn’t last long. The feelings usually went away in about 5 minutes.
Ironically, many of the negative emotions I was experiencing were about my weight. Then I would buffer with food to feel better and gain weight. It was an endless cycle.
Notice if you’re buffering with food. Are you eating when you’re not hungry? Why? What feeling are you buffering away? Be willing to feel that feeling instead of eating. Give it a try. What have you got to lose?