Well the holidays are (almost) over and it’s just about time to get back to real life.
I know for a lot of us the holidays can be a time of broken routines and pauses in our dietary or weight loss goals. If you are trying to get your ass back on the wagon after the holidays or after ANY time, I am about to hit you with some seriously life-changing knowledge.
The One Thing You are Doing to Sabotage Your Health Goals
“I ate like shit today”
“I ate terribly, I’m such a failure”
“I ate so many carbs I’m such an asshole”
Do any of these sound like you? I know for a fact they sound an awful lot like me.
And why is that? In almost any other area of life if you do something inconsistent with your goals, slipping up or not hitting your targets has nothing to do with who you are as a person.
For example, if you are trying to save money or pay off debt you don’t buy a Starbucks and automatically become the worst trash on the planet.
But if you are trying to eat healthier and buy a Starbucks cookie or scone, all of a sudden you start treating yourself like some sort of monster who kills puppies and robs old ladies.
Let’s all just calm the fuck down here.
Guilt and Shame are Shitty Motivators
As useless as the male nipple (although I am secretly holding out hope that these serve some yet unknown purpose like mesmerizing aliens or calming zombie hordes).
The point is that guilt and shame are things that should NEVER be wrapped up in your feels towards food.
THIS is the single thing you are doing wrong that is derailing all of your healthy eating efforts. Because when you are beating yourself up about your food choices you are voluntarily allowing yourself to fall into this guilt and shame spiral that feeds itself with more of the same.
This is what drives that saying “Eat your feelings”.
For some of us, allowing that cycle to start turning is sentencing ourselves to keep repeating it over and over.
Eat like shit, feel like shit, eat like shit, rinse and repeat.
What to Do Instead
I was once told that identifying a problem has no value unless you can also suggest a fix. So here it is:
Replace “I ate like shit” with “I ate inconsistent with my health/weight loss goals”.
Your self talk is powerful. Feed yourself messages that are non judgemental and suggest your own control over your life. If my experiences with binge eating and depression taught me anything it’s that those dark and helpless places can be as comfortable as they are miserable.
Fighting for change can be hard work, while keeping up this illusion that you are powerless is warm and comforting like slipping into a warm bath.
Except what’s actually happening is that you are fucking drowning in your own apathy.
Acknowledge what’s been done, take a deep breath and move on!
This was a game changer for me in every area of life where my poor choices led to dysfunction. However it is work, it doesn’t come naturally, and it takes a lot of practice.
Its like learning to walk or ride a bike. You will try, fail, pick up again, etc. etc. for probably your whole life. But I can guarantee you that doing this and failing over and over while still keeping at it will bring you more success in the long run then continuing to beat yourself up and staying stuck in that guilt and shame spiral.
Even if you’re in the midst of a binge or just feeling like shit about your choices, just take a deep breath and let that bitch go.
And By Move On, I Mean Now
You are a badass glorious human being and you don’t need to “get back to it” tomorrow, Monday or on New Years. Every minute and microsecond is your time to take back your fucking power. It’s the gift you give yourself! you don’t need some arbitrary jump off point that sets you behind even further in life.
One of my goals in the future is to share more about my experiences with disordered eating patterns but for now I just wanted to give this advice which has been the most effective for me in finding food freedom and achieving my weight loss goals.
Are you guilty of this? What are your best tips for getting back on the old proverbial horse?