On this episode of Weight Loss for Food-Lovers, Molly Zemek explains how to stay committed to your food plan during the holiday season. Initially, Molly shares that sticking to your food plan during the holidays requires work beforehand. Being able to commit is a skill that you have to work at, and it begins with simply practicing.
Molly reminds the listeners of important principles that she talks about in previous episodes. Practicing sticking to your food plan by writing out your plan and sticking to it, practicing eating your favorite treats in moderation, and eating your regular meals in an undistracted way are all important things to practice regularly. It’s also important to make sure that your meal plan involves foods you enjoy eating, otherwise you will have a feeling of being deprived going into the holidays.
After briefly describing the principles that go into preparing ahead of time to stick to your meal plan, Molly then explains how to actually stick to your plan during the festivities and celebrations. First, she encourages the listener to consider each food that is on the menu and ask yourself if you will genuinely enjoy each item and if that is the only setting to enjoy that food. Next, consider the experience you want to have during the holidays and be sure you aren’t relying on food to create those emotions of joy or peace for you. She advises that you keep things easy and simple over the holidays, or that you plan complex things in advance, so that your primitive brain won’t be tempted to overeat for comfort.
Next, Molly shares how planning for foods that you enjoy, and giving yourself a buffer, is a very effective tool in sticking to your meal plan. She cautions that going into the holidays with an open meal plan is risky and will likely result in the primitive brain being in control. Next, consider how you want to feel at the end of the day or the next day.
Molly also describes four things that often prove difficult for her clients: negotiating in the moment, thinking they may miss out, consuming too much alcohol, and planning poorly beforehand. In addition to preparing and practicing before the holidays and coming up with a plan for what you will eat, it’s also important to consider what thoughts you want to have throughout the day. Taking all of this into consideration, and seeking to apply it, will equip you to stick to your meal plan throughout the holidays.
· Building the Skill of Commitment
· Eating What You Enjoy
· Eating without Distraction
· Considering a Menu in Advance
· Food and Emotions
· Planning Ahead
“You don’t just show up the day of with the capability of being able to commit to what you decide ahead of time.”
“If you are struggling through a food plan that you follow day by day, week by week, during ‘normal times’, then you’re probably going to be going into the holidays feeling deprived.”
“You need to clean up your habits around your normal food plan, before you go into the holidays.”
“Usually, we eat in such a distracted, zoned out way, that we’re not even paying attention to the food itself. And when we do that, of course we end the portion that we have feeling like it’s not enough.”
“Is this something that will genuinely taste good to me? Will I thoroughly enjoy it? Is this a food that I will only be able to enjoy on this particular day, in this particular location?”
“When you put the pressure on food, of course you’re going to be overeating as a way to compensate for the joy that you’re not creating for yourself.”
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