Why Diving Into The Client’s Past Doesn’t Fix Binge Eating

Let’s start by saying that counselling has a lot of value and helps a lot of people with many of life’s problems. Every therapy and every approach to personal transformation has its place, otherwise it wouldn’t exist! 

However, we have had many clients through Chase Life, like the ladies in this video, who have been through counselling and talking based therapies who never overcame their issues with food until they tried a wildly DIFFERENT approach. 

Why is that? 

Many people’s experience of counselling is to delve into the “why” of the problem… 

Why do I binge?

Where did this all come from?

The logic being that if you can understand why you struggle with a problem, you will know the solution to fixing it. Unfortunately what this often results in for many people is that they end up with an intimate understanding of how and why they became stuck, but they remain stuck! 

As one of the amazing ladies in this video explains, she would leave her counselling sessions and go straight to the store to get food to binge on! 

Here’s a very crude analogy to explain what happens when you over-analyse the “why” question… 

Why did the car break down?

Because the fan belt broke. 


Because I neglected to take my car in for maintenance. 


Because I was too busy. 


Because my boss was out of town and I had to cover for her.


Because she was on holiday!

… and on and on it goes. 

When we fixate on the past we often end up reinforcing the neural pathways associated with the pain and the trauma from the past. 

Of course going into the past comes from the most heartfelt intentions. But SO many of our clients come to us saying “talking about my past just made everything worse!” These are clients who went the distance too – often spending YEARS in therapy!

Our approach in Chase Life is completely different. We see binge eating, low self esteem, even trauma, as unconsciously learned responses – skills if you like. 

The client has a strong, fast neural pathway, and we need to replace it with a new one. That’s like learning any new skill. 

Here’s another crude analogy. Imagine a client learning to play tennis. Perhaps they have a terrible forehand and need to learn how to improve it. 

Do you need to dive into the past and discover in intimate detail why they hit a bad forehand, where they learnt it, where it all began, etc? 

Or do you need an intimate understanding of how to hit a good forehand and dedicate yourself to producing that result instead? 

That’s our approach to personal change. We focus on the “how” and most of the time we don’t need to know the “why”. 

That’s not to say we ignore the past altogether. Occasionally it’s helpful to use processes designed to change the internal representations associated with a past event – so that the client changes their beliefs and perspective. 

But that’s a brief process. And it should be a liberating process, not a painful one. 

At Chase Life we have an unrivalled track record, helping clients to fully eliminate binge eating and emotional eating in less than 8 weeks. 

We are now teaching our methods to caring, passionate coaches, trainers, therapists, nutritionists, dieticians, doctors, and other health professionals.



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