Lots of us have gone on and off diets. We are sucked in by the flashy infomercials, the sculpted people pushing the products, and the promise that we too can FINALLY lose the weight and have the bodies that we have always wanted, because, HAPPINESS.
We try diet #1 and
last for a while. Then, life happens, and we fall off. This is
followed by intense amounts of guilt and shame for being so out of
control. The solution? Diet #2, which is followed by #3, #4, #5...
You get the picture?
The very thing it is that we THINK we need is what causes us to rebel.
We are told by the gurus that we can't be trusted. So, we buy a
structure, a system, that tells us, "if you do what we say to the
letter, you will lose weight." We WANT someone to tell us what to do.
We desperately WANT it to work. But, it never does. The diet model
comes from a "ONE SIZE FITS ALL" type of mentality.
We are not
ONE SIZE FITS ALL people. We are delightfully specific and unique
individuals that require a specific, unique course of action.
Enter the "NON-DIET APPROACH": No calorie counting, no macro
restrictions, no measuring, and no specific meal or snack designations.
Just focus on eating when hungry and stopping when full. Brilliant!
Well, sort of.
We are fed up with dieting and want
to break free of the rigidity of rules. So, we embrace the free form
nature of eating intuitively. But, sometimes, this can fail us too.
BECAUSE WE TURN THE NON-DIET APPROACH INTO A DIET.
"Eat ONLY when hungry. Stop ONLY when satisfied, but not stuffed."
This is good advice, don't get me wrong. Food does taste better when
you are hungry and eating past fullness doesn't feel so good. But, we
don't give ourselves any flexibility when trying to figure this all out.
God forbid we don't get it right. We really let ourselves have it,
don't we? By doing this, we have essentially traded one set of rules
Take sleep for example. The Sleep Foundation
Organization recommends 7-9 hours of sleep for adults 26-64 years of
age. Well, what if you get 6.5 one night and 9.5 the next? Do you
obsess about it? Do you think you are "sleeping wrong"?? Does that
mean you failed??? Of course not! It just means that you probably
don't feel as well rested when you get less, so your body compensates by
getting a little more the next day.
Think about eating
intuitively the same way. Life happens. Some days, you'll be in tune
and other days, not so much. Maybe you'll be offered some birthday cake
at a party when you're not hungry. Maybe you'll get caught up in work
and skip lunch when you are. Be aware of how your body feels when in
these situations, take the feedback it gives you and then, let it go and
move on. What if you just extended yourself some compassion instead of
judgement? What if you just realized that you are human and you
acknowledge that you are doing the best you can with what you currently
Just do your best. It's enough.
Enjoy your life. You only get one.
Be in the moment. It's all we have.