I feel so blessed that I recognize my sugar "addiction" in my early twenties, and that I found the help I needed to actually get to the root of my emotional eating in order to change those patterns for good.
Do I still have days I want to wolf down a pint of ice cream in one sitting? Of course! But do I do it? Nope. I may turn to a scoop of ice cream out of boredom or stress, but I stop after the first serving.
I had left a borderline abusive relationship - my first long term relationship, and that boyfriend had come from a family where the example his parents set was to be rude and hurtful to each other. So he said critical and hurtful things... he was "just being sarcastic" according to him, but it hurt me and I took it all seriously.
I felt lonely and confused coming out of that relationship, and while I had always loved sweets and enjoyed eating them, it was the first couple years I'd been away from home and I just kept turning to them over and over.
Add into that mix I had ideal goals for myself and the world and had become vegan... and it's a lot easier to find vegan sweets and junk food than it is to find nourishing balanced normal foods (especially back then). So feeling I was automatically "healthy" by my restrictive diet also made me think I had a free pass.
I was reading through some old journals when I had first left that relationship and become vegan (all in the same few months), and I was writing things like the following... these are direct quotes from the things I actually wrote in my journal back in my early 20s.
EAT LESS SUGAR!!!! I'm so addicted.
I felt kind of sick again today. Too many snacks and junk food.
I was in a bad mood this evening. I ate too much processed food today. I got heartburn and felt shitty.
And of course my new year's resolution many years in a row was: "Stop eating so many sweets." Pretty sure I just copied that from one journal to the next over several years!
I'm not going to embarrass myself right now with any of the poems I wrote.... luckily those were not about sugar, or I might feel I have to!!!!
So why is it so hard to stop eating sweets, even though we tell ourselves over and over that we are going to???
Because it's not the sweets... it's what is behind the sweets. I had to figure out the BIG PICTURE before I could finally get to a healthy place with the sweets.
I continued to eat too many sweets, make myself feel sick, and judge myself for doing it...
If you have felt yourself on this cycle, then get the support you need from me or someone else who can help you recognize the big picture and hold you uncountable to begin shifting your perception and habits.
So you, too, can ENJOY that one scoop of ice cream, without eating the whole pint, and without feeling guilty.
Want to learn more? Start by signing up for my 5 secrets to end emotional eating.
Okay, first of all I'm just going to answer this right away.
You have probably seen in recent week, or will see in the next few, claims that people gain 1, 2, 3, 4, 5... or more pounds in the holiday season.
The truth is... MOST people don't gain weight in the holidays, and the people that do gain a pound or less.
BUT... holidays definitely cause us stress.
We are bombarded with party after party, cookies in the office (sometimes with the best of intentions..sometimes just so they don't eat it themselves!!!), treats mailed from well meaning relatives, and so on.
Eating like this may or may not contribute to immediate weight gain, but sure as heck can make us feel BAD.
And yet my signature program, Love Every Bite, is hinged upon the fact that you actually CAN eat whatever you want, whenever you want and maintain a healthy weight and feel great!
So how on earth is that possible?
Well, I'll share with you the first step:
Count Joy, not Calories!
When you focus on the OTHER aspects of the holiday season, your relationship with the food can change. Sure, we can also have stress from family visits or travel... but the WHOLE point of the holidays is to connect with our loved ones.
So I challenge you to focus on that this year.
What can you change in your holiday plans to allow you to focus on the JOY?
Is there one party you can respectfully say no to, to give yourself time to relax or spend with your loved ones in a more relaxed way?
While I told you last week that quality of food is important, it's not the first step. The first step is focusing on the joy. When we start to enJOY our food, our meals, our parties, and really focus on that, we actually free ourselves from the obligation to eat all the dang candy everywhere.
And to further assist you in that journey, I have two coupons attached for you to remember when you need them.
This next one upsets some people, so I want to give disclaimer... I do not advocate throwing away food.
But we also have to acknowledge that in our society, food shortage is not a problem.
We have the opposite problem: we have TOO MUCH NON-FOOD.
By thinking of foods that are not healthy, not nourishing, and not even really that enjoyable, as NON foods, it becomes easier to pass on them, or even throw them away.
If you know you need some support this holiday season to start shifting your habits to begin to enjoy the holiday parties instead of dread them, let's chat.
I help busy, ambitious leaders to step off the emotional eating roller coaster, so they can lose weight and keep it off, still eat all the foods they love, and finally find the work life balance they crave.