The festive season is here. Yet, you’re not feeling all festive right now. You might be worried about all the Christmas food that is going to be around over the next few weeks. You are thinking about your health, your waistline, and feeling in control.
Christmas is definitely a challenging time for those with unhappy relationships with food, and their body.
In regular day to day life, when you eat, you might try and keep something in control.
It might be:
- Controlling what you’ve eaten
- Controlling how much you’ve eaten
- Controlling how many calories or food numbers were in that food
This feeling of control can give us the sense that we are ‘okay’. That everything is going to be ‘okay’.
Running a mental tab on the food you’ve consumed (or even writing it down), can give you that feeling of control.
When that doesn’t happen, and you don’t know what you’ve eaten or if you ‘should’ have eaten that thing, then your handle on the situation goes out the window.
Out of control can feel like:
- You are breathing fast and shallow, and can feel your heart pumping
- You do anything to try and get a semblance of control again – even when these things are ultimately damaging (such as vomiting, fasting even though you’re hungry, or eating plain foods because you want to ‘right the wrong’)
- You might also avoid social situations around food just so you can feel in control again
- You can’t enjoy conversations or movies or games because you are too focused on a part of your body, or feeling you have ‘done the wrong thing’.
Not exactly a relaxed, chilled and happy festive time.
Wouldn’t it be lovely to eat the foods you want to eat, and you still feel naturally balanced? Meaning you know it’s all going to be okay.
I’m here to tell you: It’s all going to be okay.
It is possible to feel okay about food over Christmas. It is possible to relax about weight, body and food without that horrible spiraling out of control feeling.
Here are 5 pointers to guide you towards a chilled out holiday season.
Enter the festivities with a new mindset. Instead of “Oh gosh, I’m going to feel out of control” – turn your mind around and say “This is a great week or two to practice allowing myself to eat what I want. I know this can be a great start for me to begin my own eat happy path, and leave dieting behind!”
If you are thinking that you need a level of control, then go with that – but make it about your mindset not the food on your plate. Control the negative thinking, not your portion size. Any time you hear yourself say that what you’re eating isn’t right, swoop in with a set of predetermined affirmations or positive images. Make sure to think plenty of positive things as the week goes on. A classic, and easy one is “Everything is going to be okay”.
Don’t think of food as ‘naughty or nice’. But see how you feel. When you see food and you want to eat it, then eat it. Keep eating what you want to eat over Christmas as just see how you feel. Stop referring to food by its perceived value and go by what your body feels instead. This is a great guide over Christmas. Even if your belly feels very full – be kind to it. Never make you or your body a bad thing for eating this way over Christmas. When you give yourself permission (true permission) to eat this way, it’s way different that eating on the ‘sly’.
Don’t fear missing out. A lot of what drives holiday cravings is the feeling that this food is limited, one time, and exclusive to the festive time. This can lead to eating when you don’t really feel like it, and hoarding food so that you don’t lose out. This is definitely not a balanced approach and can lead to feeling mentally wobbly. Instead, honour the food by actually eating is with attention and awareness! That way, the memory of the food stays with you. It’s also good to know that you’ll have access to a tonne of food over the next year. Yes, it might not have snowflakes on the label, but you’ll have new seasonal food to enjoy, like hollow bunnies or lemon sorbet. The year will go by quickly, you’ll have all of these foods again sooner than you know! Trust that there is plenty out there, and lots of other things to delight you.
Take yourself for a walk. Enjoy the time off, and go for a walk. If it’s cold and it’s a holiday, then oftentimes the air is really still. No traffic or honking cars. Just a blanket of silence. Take your mind into that space, and let it settle on other things outside of your whirlwind mind. Notice the air temperature, your feet crunching on the ground beneath you. Listen to any bird song, or look at the clouds. Connect with the magic of this time, and make this the start of a new beginning for you. A new year where you can learn to truly find out who you are and love yourself anew.
I promise you, when you change your intentions from ‘getting food right’ to ‘accepting yourself truly’ – everything will change for the better.
When you know who you are, and love what you find within, there is no better experience. This is the real gift you can give yourself. Make it your Christmas wish this year, to heal your relationship with food by stepping out of the diet trap and learning to love yourself once and for all.
Merry Christmas and a happy festive season to you.
If you want to gift yourself this happier relationship with food for the new year, I am taking bookings for 2020 now. Get booked in to a free consultation call by filling in the form on this page so I can get back to you with times and dates.