Eggnog, cookies, fruitcake, oh my! We can sometimes be overwhelmed by the multitude of delicious dishes and delectable deserts that we just want to sink our teeth into. Aunt Carol’s famous snicker salad, or grandma’s traditional sweet potatoes. It can be hard to say no to these classics when celebrating the holidays with family and friends.
For those with a strong will to just say no, we salute you! However, for the rest of us - it's not that easy! Here are four excuses you should not let yourself use when faced with indulgences this holiday season:
1. I only get this food once a year.
For many of us, holiday celebrations conjure up special memories of favorite foods created with love. It is not uncommon to tell ourselves “this holiday food looks amazing and I may never get this food again” or “the holidays come just once a year, so I am going to eat, drink, and be merry.” Lets really breakdown the thought “I’ll never get this food again.” How true is that, really? Couldn’t this food be made again or purchased another day of the year? Remember that the holidays come again and again year after year. There will be other holiday celebrations that will give you the opportunity to eat these foods again. Have a “reasonable” portion of the food you love, and remember it is never necessary to overeat because you can - that's simply irresponsible.
2. I have to do things the way I’ve always done them or someone will be disappointed.
Don’t put yourself in that box this holiday season. Families often have long standing holiday traditions - including favorite foods, but if these foods derail you from your weight loss goals, it is ok to set them aside for a year and try something new. Try preparing a completely low carb meal and offer just one dessert (low calorie) instead of the dessert buffet. Some family members may be temporarily disappointed, but you may be starting a few new holiday traditions as family and friends come to appreciate your healthier menu. Ask yourself, who will really be disappointed if I change up the holiday foods I serve this year: my family and friends, or myself?
3. I’ve already reared off track; I’ve blown it so I’ll just wait until the New Year to get back on track.
This “I’ll get back on track later” thought is common to a lot of us who have tried to stick to a food plan over the holidays. It starts with just a bite of this and a taste of that and ultimately leads to an “oh no” realization and a promise to not do that at the next party, only to do it again. Disillusioned, it ends with an agreement that you will eat what you want over the holidays this year and get back on track in the New Year. Sound familiar? Don’t buy into that this holiday season! Change your thoughts to “I ate more than I planned at the party but I will make an effort to do better at the next party.” Just because you ate more than planned once does not mean you have to eat more at additional holiday celebrations. As the old adage goes: two wrongs don't make a right! Don't keep making mistakes for the sake of taking a break.
4. I won’t be able to enjoy myself during the holidays if I have to work on healthy eating.
Actually, the opposite is true. When we are trying to lose weight but make a decision to eat poorly in order to enjoy the holidays, it often backfires. We spend our time obsessing, sad, and frustrated about what we ate. Conflicting thoughts like, “I can’t believe I am doing this” and “I feel so awful about it, but I don’t want to stop,” create an internal struggle that taints the enjoyment of the season. In addition, you may become disheartened, overwhelmed, and anxious about what you need to do in the New Year to undo what was done over the holidays. Contrast that to eating only what you planned and being in control of your eating choices is very rewarding. As you enter the New Year, you are happy and confident that you are one step closer to meeting your weight loss goals.
Consider this : Have you ever come home from a party where you stayed in control of your food choices but felt sad because you did not eat any of the enticing foods offered? Probably not. Take time this holiday season to enjoy socializing with family and friends instead of focusing so much on the food you didn't eat. You'll thank yourself for it later!
Need help staying on track this holiday season? Profile's got your back! Contact your nearest Profile store to set up a free one-on-one consultation with a Certified Profile Coach!