We’ve all been there…..halfway through December, a few holiday events under your belt (literally and figuratively) with more events, and Christmas and New Year's Eve looming.
We take stock…”How have I done so far?”
“How will I do over the new few weeks?”
And we look toward January as if it’s some magical time when the world will be righted again and we will make amends for all of our wrongs.
I only know this so well because I’ve been there…time and time again.
The Holiday Eating Boogeyman has gotten me too!
He is very alluring…
He tells me that I might as well just give up since I’ve already gained a few pounds since Thanksgiving.
He justifies my overeating with soothing words about how I DESERVE to enjoy my food.
He helps me rationalize less physical activity with the righteousness of being generous and giving over the holidays. (“I’m too busy with the holidays”).
He encourages me to eat too much sugar in the name of tradition.
I wonder if any of this sounds familiar to you?
In the past few years, I’ve managed to outsmart the boogeyman. I have called his bluff!
I can still enjoy the holidays and spend time with family without eating myself sick.
I have found that being physically active offsets any stress and it is worth having fewer gifts under the tree or missing a few events I didn’t really want to attend anyway.
I have realized that what I DESERVE is taking care of my body with love. And that feels good in a very sustainable way.
I hope that this article inspires you to be more aware and to make better choices over the holidays because this is life…there are always events and trips that can get in the way of our reaching our goals.
The Holiday Boogeyman is actually quite persistent throughout the year. (maybe in a different disguise)
By the way, the Holiday Boogeyman is really just our reptilian brain (aka lower brain). I wrote this blog post about how to deal with your reptilian brain.
And that part of our brain prefers things the way they are. Safety and survival in the short run are its main concerns. It does not “care” about your long-term goals. Habitual behavior is preferred.
So, to break those old habits and escape the boogeyman you have to be aware and consciously make different choices.
Once you realize that the reptilian brain or boogeyman thoughts are not the end-all-be-all and that you can question those old stories and tell new ones that serve your goals, well, then it gets a bit easier.
The key to not succumbing to holiday over-indulgence is recogzining those old patterns of thought and behavior when they come.
But you have to have a good reason to engage in different thoughts and stories.
What is your “WHY”?
Why do you want to eat more healthfully?
Why is it important for you to move more?
What is it that you value about yourself that makes you deserve self-love?
Get those “whys” solid in your mind and body. Know them inside and out. Breathe them.
Because they fuel motivation (or I prefer the word inspiration).
And motivation is that umph you need to tell the boogeyman to go away!!