Updated: Mar 15, 2018
Sometimes it seems like no matter what I eat for dinner, all I want to do while binge-watching The Good Wife afterwards is have some popcorn. Or chocolate. Or Pringles. Or anything caloric and bad for me, really.
Part of this is habit; it’s easy to get into the routine of eating something salty or sweet after dinner. But the other part of it could be sheer boredom. I mean, what else are you supposed to do while you’re binge watching your favourite show?
Well, this blog post is all dedicated to all the things you can do! I’ve found from my own personal experience that if my hands are busy doing something, I’m far less likely to want to eat everything in sight, so I hope these tips will help you, too!
Five Ways to Keep Your Hands Busy
Give yourself a manicure.
Soak your hands, file your nails, give yourself an arm massage… Do the whole kit n’ caboodle. The longer the process, the longer you’ll be unable to eat that bag of Cheetos. Bonus: Your hands will look extra pretty afterwards!
Okay, I just have to say it: I used to colour long before it was a “thing.” Except back then there weren’t any of these super fancy adult colouring books so I was using Disney Princess colouring books made for kids ages 8 and under. But I digress. Colouring is not only a great way to keep your hands busy, but it’s extremely relaxing—and rewarding, too! One of my favourites are the postcards from the “Secret Garden” collection. Send them to friends afterwards!
3. Learn how to knit.
Knitting is not only easy to learn, but it’s really fun to do. And it’s genuinely quite an accomplishment when you finish a scarf for yourself or a significant person in your life that’s made exactly the way you want. If you’re in an especially giving mood, you can also donate your knitted items to different charities! It’s a great way to pick up the skill and give back to those in need. I’m currently working on a big Afghan blanket and am absolutely addicted to knitting (to the point where I’ve even been attending drop-in knitting groups here because apparently I’m 90 years old).
4. Do some Lego.
Okay, okay… You might think I’m sounding ridiculous right about now, but if you feel that way it’s obviously because you haven’t done Lego recently. It’s not only incredibly fun, but there’s a nostalgic charm that comes with the process. Just don’t step on the pieces; that’s still one of the most painful things ever!
5. Do a puzzle.
Puzzles are another relaxing activity that allow for you to unwind at the end of the day. Plus, there is no shortage of designs for you to choose from online. (You can start by looking here at Indigo’s puzzle collection.)
6. BONUS: Skip the TV all together and play a board game!
While I personally stay away from the overly complicated games (I’m trying to relax, here!), many are a hybrid between strategic thinking and fun like “Exploding Kittens” or “Marrakech.” Plus, you can get the whole family involved if you play a social game like “Anomia” or “Telestrations.” The best part is that engaging in a board game is much more social than mindlessly watching television; it gives your family a chance to interact with one another, have fun, and actually bond over each other’s company—something TV-watching simply can’t provide! If you’re interested in seeing which games might suit you best, check out Devetos Gaming, a site with board game reviews, news, and giveaways that’s based in Toronto!
The Bottom Line
I know from experience how easy it is to mindlessly munch on high-calorie snacks while you’re distracted by your favourite TV show. While this may seem like a harmless habit, those calories can really add up. And consuming them super close to bedtime means many of those calories aren’t being burned off and will be stored as fat instead. Eating foods high in fat, sugar, and salt can also increases your chances of experiencing heartburn at night, which can prevent you from getting a restful sleep. So, use that time to do some relaxing and highly under-rated activities like doing a puzzle or knitting yourself a new scarf!
You Tell Me!
Are there activities you do to stop yourself from mindlessly eating at night? Share your secret in the comment below!