Thriving During The Holidays Without Dieting or Destructive Eating
If you asked anyone in my family, they would tell you that I am nuts about the holidays. There is barely a square foot of my house that doesn’t get adorned with something red or green or twinkling. It’s a magical time of the year, but as with most things, there are also challenges, especially if you have battled with overeating or your weight.
The holidays are synonymous with celebration, family and food. I have been doing work with emotional and disordered eating for a long time, and let me tell you, this time of the year is ripe with emotional triggers and hidden “pitfalls”. Many of my clients dread this time of the year because of that, and then resent that they have to feel this way when they wish they were just able to enjoy the season in peace.
Many people are tempted to go on a diet, to ward off the possibility of potential weight gain. Other people see this time of year as a time to go wild and indulge with the idea of going on a diet starting on January 1 as a way of dealing with the consequences of their actions.
Either way, it kicks up the temptation to diet, which if you are reading this blog, you know is A BAD IDEA (if you want to know more about why, download my free report). So, what if this year was different?
I want to give you some mindset shifts to work with over the holidays to help you get through the season without the stress of holiday eating and without going on a diet.
Mindset shifts are new ways of thinking that when applied, change the way you see the situation and help you to make different choices. Use these mindset shifts as mantras, repeating them to yourself until they become known to you on a deeper level.
- There is no beginning and no end: Stopping and starting is a way of the past. It is a diet mindset. From this point on there is no day 1, no beginning and there is no end. There is only you, continuing to eat when you are hungry and stopping when you are full (*say this even if you aren’t there yet – put the power of positive thought into action!). Just because the holiday season stops and starts does not mean that you do!
- Giving Gifts to Yourself: A big part of the holiday’s centers around giving gifts and showering our loved ones with tokens of our love. This year look at the way you relate to food as your gift to yourself. A balanced and moderate relationship with food is one that will sustain you, keep you centered, and allow you to enjoy the season without losing your self-confidence. Make this the most important gift you give this year!
- Worthiness – Regardless of if you are in a place where you feel your weight is stable, or if you are still journeying towards the healthiest you, this time of year is about celebration. Don’t be afraid to allow yourself to enjoy food and that includes the foods that once were on the ‘bad’ list (remember, there are no good or bad foods!). If you give yourself permission to eat what you want prior to any situation, you will be surprised at how moderate your consumption will be. Ward off any potential binge that might come as a result of depriving yourself.
- Kindness – Shifting from judgment and negative self talk into non-judgment and kindness is one of the most powerful shifts anyone can make. One thing I love about the holidays is that it tends to bring out the kind, giving side of people. People are more generous, friendlier, and more open to expressing their “softer” side.
- Allow this to spread to your relationship with yourself and with food. If you overindulge, give yourself a break. Whatever happens, if you are willing to accept and forgive mistakes, your reaction and the ultimate results are going to be far better in the long run than if you punish yourself or lay on the guilt.
- Already a New You – This year, instead of starting the beginning of the year off with New Year’s resolutions (let’s be honest, how successful are those anyway??), shift backwards and take this time as a period of reflection. How have you grown? What positive things do you notice about yourself? How are you already a new you? By focusing on our accomplishments and our strengths, we automatically FEEL better, and FEEL capable. This sets the stage for you to go forward into the New Year and accomplish whatever it is your heart desires.
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