In response to the stress of modern life, we often turn to food. Come on, admit it. It's happened to you, too!

We are several weeks into the new year and for most that means a determination to prevent derailment from the tracks of a hopeful resolution.  A regimen was likely put in place to lose weight you’ve been meaning to shed for years. You may be measuring with the wrong scale, however, to rid yourself of those unwanted pounds.  Ask yourself the following questions to determine if stress is causing you to gain weight.  If so, you may need to add a stress relief program to your goal train.

When do you find yourself reaching for unhealthy snacks?

We are all creatures of habit, and you may not know what habits are causing problems.  For a week, write down everything you eat and at what time.  The very act of writing it down may deter you from reaching for that soda mid-afternoon or snacking on one too many brownies at the dessert bar, but you will start to see a pattern emerge.  Often we become stress-eaters, meaning that in a moment of crisis we grab a doughnut or candy bar. By keeping a record you’ll recognize the pattern.  This will allow you to recognize the symptoms of stress and alleviate it before you’re reaching for the calories to distract you.

Is stress keeping me up at night?

When we do not properly relieve ourselves of the day’s stressors, we can find ourselves awake at night and anxious.  This becomes a vicious cycle because without proper rest we are more likely to be unmotivated to exercise and eat right.  We all know it’s easier to grab fast food than prepare a healthy meal at home.  Take the time each night to relax and do what it takes to get a good night’s rest.  Your waist will thank you.

Am I stressed to the point of being in-active?

Do you find yourself pulled in so many directions at work that by the time you head home you just want to turn on the tube and block out all other distractions? This may be a sign that your stress levels are too high. It’s not a bad thing to want to relax after a hard day at work, but if you’re giving up social opportunities or losing a desire to exercise, you are risking the chance of gaining more weight and keeping the extra you already have to lose.

Look at your life right now, if you see some of these habits in your life, consider losing some stress’s and see how much your life will change.

This has been a guest post by writer Lance Williams.