6 tips to Deal When the Whole World (seems like it) is Dieting
This time of year is set with traps.
The kind that make you fall into pits of self-hate and desperation for something new.
And those things make you reach for, and perhaps even try, the oddest or hardest or silliest of things to “get there.” (Wherever “there” is.)
I recently ran into a HUGE post promoting the “magic” of a detox in a Facebook group I’m in that has nothing to do with food or exercise. I clicked on the lady’s Facebook name and quickly learned she’s trying to sell poor, unsuspecting, desperate minds a product.
Truth be told, I ate chocolate yesterday. I also had some frosting. And some popcorn. And a few gummy worms. Not much, but a few bites.
And I’m sure as hell not doing anything special about it today. I didn’t wake up hating myself. I refused to look at myself in the mirror and tell myself I was weak and stupid for “giving in” to sugar. I am not going to do an extended/special workout to “make up” for anything. I will not be trying to over-hydrate my body with water because that can be very dangerous from a medical perspective. (And who has that much time to pee all day?!)
Here are 5 things that really help me TUNE THAT SHIT OUT:
- EOYOP. This is my 2017 mantra, actually. “Eyes On Your Own Paper/Plate.” Why do you have to suffer with everyone else? No where in the rule book of life does it say anything about having to do what your friends are doing. In fact, we learned in early adolescence that this often creates WAY bigger issues. Just do you, boo!
- Enjoy your food. Continue to give a middle finger to the very idea of doing what your body and mind really don’t need by making sure that you are eating right. I don’t mean counting or eliminating or cleaning anything- I mean eating foods that make you feel good and including little bits of things that sound good, too. The more we listen to the voices that beg us for permission, the easier the struggle with food will become. Trust me. There’s a light. Go there.
- And your exercise, too. Do you like to walk? Then walk. Do you like to lift weights? Then throw that heavy shit around. Do you like Zumba? Shake it, girl! My point is this: I’m not going to sit here and tell you “do this, not that.” You need to enjoy the way you move. You also need to listen to your body and rest when it asks. That’s it. There are no other “needs.” If you are doing exercise that you hate or hurts you, how is that doing you any good? How will that ever last? It won’t.
- Block the noise. We now live in a “work from home” world. It seems like everyone is selling something. That’s great, but if it triggers you then you have every right to shut it down. For a long time I thought that people who said things like “trigger” were just a bunch of sissies… but then I realized it’s what the name is for my reaction to seeing posts where people are listing things like pounds lost, minutes spent running, calories burned, ounces consumed, etc… things I don’t need to care about. Again, #1: EOYOP. If it’s too much, if it haunts you and dares you to fall into the trap, then take the steps to protect yourself. Hide posts, unlike pages, find new places to hang out. Protect your mind (and body!) from the bullshit until you can no longer be affected by it.
- Surround yourself with the good shit. Seek out the people and pages and books and music and podcasts that keep you moving forward. The ones that give you permission to love and honor your place in the journey and encourage you in a healthy, positive way. Eating healthy and mindfully is very different than dieting. Moving your body (exercise) mindfully and joyfully is very different than either doing absolutely nothing for the remainder of your life or spending full working days at the gym to “undo” damage. There are TONS of amazing people and messages out there- weed through the bullshit and cling to the things you really need to be hearing.
- Buy shit that fits. I can’t say this enough. It doesn’t matter what you think your goal “number” SHOULD be. That’s not where you are right now, and this person deserves not one less bit of love (and clothes that fit) than the person you picture in your head. I read something recently that perfectly summed it up- if you get smaller you buy clothes happily, why does it have to be any different? Buying bigger isn’t a punishment. It’s just buying what you need right now. Squeezing into clothes that don’t fit is a punishment. Stop doing that.
I was 300 pounds when I was 16, and I was 153 pounds when I was 23. I was equally miserable at both weights. I’m somewhere in the middle of “who-the-eff-cares” now and navigating my way to normal. I still find myself shutting people and pages out if it’s too much. I buy clothes that clothe the body that I have now and I do my best to not get angry or frustrated if the number is different than what I think it should be- because it’s just a number.
When we make plans to “detox” and purge, we stay stuck.
When we start allowing ourselves to eat and enjoy any and all foods, we move forward.
Won’t you move forward with me today?
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