Holidays can add even more pressure than the already normal everyday stress that can lead to overeating. So it is easy to veer way out of control with emotional or stress eating patterns towards the end of the year. Then add in the collective intensities of 2020 and well.. it has been a powerhouse year of challenging our balance which again can tip the scale to poor eating and lifestyle habits across the board.
There are a lot of wellness trends that are extreme in dictating dietary perfection which makes many people quit a healthy holiday diet before they even get through November. Restrictions such as you're not supposed to ever have sugar or you're not supposed to ever have carbs, fats, grains and so on. We're here to be able to enjoy everything and yet gravitate intuitively to what our body actually requires for our own unique wellness equation.
If you feel restricted or that you don't have a choice it is not likely that your plan will last long term. One suggestion is to consider going flexitarian. This allows you to pick and choose from many different diet plans to find what your own specific constitution benefits from most. A flexitarian allows the right mix of say vegetarian with some fish or chicken or whatever feels like a useful addition that the body may be reaching for from time to time. This allows you to develop your own intuitive body connection while also not feeling wrong or bad for not being too extreme.
It is really important to begin creating more of your own conscious choice around indulgences. Because what can happen, which is common for those who travel home for the holidays, may find they drop into old younger home self eating behaviors (like when you used to live there). Maybe you can relate? You travel to your childhood home only to find yourself defaulting to your old eating patterns like when you lived there. Or if you have one or more siblings also gathering who may also have those same energy patterns like when you lived together.
How your family was around food can really be an invisible influence and yet it's still happening. So if you ever go home and think, why am I suddenly eating like I used to? Or you recognize old trigger patterns, this may be where it is coming from. So this is where you can shift the old limitation and make a new conscious choice to eat in a way that honors your body now. So much of my intuitive eating work is around strengthening clients body mind connection, so they have more intuitive awareness in every healthy lifestyle choice.
You can make a healthy holiday conscious choice of indulgence telling yourself "Hey, I'm going to really enjoy this out of the norm holiday meal, or this entire day where it's a everything goes play day." It is possible to let go of the guilt, fear and wrongness of food. This year I had pecan pie for breakfast on Thanksgiving. And it was absolute bliss! I decided you know what, I'm gonna allow myself this total play space to really indulge and enjoy. And it was it was really really fun. Now would I want to do that every day? No. I really wouldn't even want to do that most of the time. And yet to be able to just have that play space was a really fun experience which to me is also a joyful life balance.
So when you make these types of choices ahead of time before your parties or family gatherings, it allows you that space to have the green juice or other supports or extra fruits and vegetables for you to be able to feel as though you can enjoy a decadent dessert. If you do not prepare and intuit what will help you have balance when you do go into a social holiday invite then you are more likely to default to devouring what's right in front of you.
Or if you're traveling can be another tricky one to navigate as well. So really being aware of conscious choice so you can decide before you get into a group situation "okay, this is where I'm going to have some extra wine or really enjoy sort of everything without without judgement." Allowing that space of freedom because it really is we're here to experience and indulge in. And this doesn't mean you're stuffing yourself until your ill, because that would be something else that's going on. What I'm talking about here is being in tune with your own intuitive body connection to know where you can relax and when it is time to make some changes.
Yesterday, I was running errands and ran into issues that were a bit stressful and found myself suddenly feeling incredibly dehydrated. So much so and that's really unusual for me that I stopped I got a giant jug of green juice, I got like really good spring water. And I literally drank them the second I got in the car back to back and then all of a sudden, you know, did a little bit of a couple minutes of energy balancing. In centering myself I realized that the stores I was in had such strong contrast of stress that I my body was wanting way more water to help balance me. Now that's my own unique system and rhythm which would be different for you because we have different constitutions we have different set points of balance.
We are all in a delicate dance between hormones, biorhythm flow, metabolism and all the energetic influence factors that are going on around us. You know all of these kind of coalesce together for what balance is so watching that, you know when you realize okay, my body's feeling dry or my body's feeling, you know, extremely hypersensitive, really tuning into Okay, what's going to bring me balance in this moment? That's a really great question that will help you to find your own center of balance.
This holiday play with your own inspired direction with the intention of coming through the holidays healthier and happier and see what happens. You may just surprise yourself that you are intuitive and can trust your body. As you anticipate increasing your self care, doing your best to stay active then these can work wonders to give you space to indulge and still maintain a healthy intuitive lifestyle success.
Happy Holidays and be well.
Cathleen Miller Intuitive Eating Lifestyle Coach
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