Thursday Think Tip: If you’re making a goal to lose weight in 2021, get on the scale! See where you’re starting from! Avoiding the scale makes it easier to avoid other healthy habits. Just remember, if you felt sick, took your temperature, and saw you had a fever, you would never think, “I can’t believe I let my temperature get this high! I’m such a weak person.” The number on the scale is the same – it’s just INFORMATION about whether what you’re doing is working. It says nothing about who you are as a person.
Wednesday Sabotage: I’m in that weird zone between Christmas and New Years when everything feels a bit off, so I’m just going to go with it and let my eating be unstructured, too.
Response: Just because my time is unstructured, doesn’t mean my eating should be! Continuing to eat regular meals and giving myself food that my body can use feels great, regardless of whether or not I’m in the regular life routine right now.
Tuesday Reality Check: We want to remind you after a holiday that it’s okay to get rid of leftovers! If you have highly tempting food in your house, either make a plan for how much you’ll have, and/or make a plan to get it out of the house so that it doesn’t tempt you and tax your resistance muscle.
Monday Motivation: While staying in control of your eating is harder during the holidays, the good news is that when you manage to do so, it feels extra great! The harder it is to stay on track, the more positive feelings you get as a result. Remind yourself that staying on track during a normal day feels good, but staying on track during a holiday feels AMAZING!
Most of us seem to be in the no-man’s land between the winter holidays and the New Year. If your eating has been off track, it may seem appealing to let yourself off the hook until January and decide to “worry about it then.” We don’t agree! We think there are actually lots of reasons to start working on healthy eating right this moment!
- Deciding to wait until January to start working on healthy eating doesn’t start your year off on a strong foot. Wouldn’t it be so great if, instead of needing to make major chances in January, you’ve already started making them? You won’t start the new year with a list of things you need to change. Instead, you can start it with a list of things you want to keep doing.
- Why wait to start feeling better? While it’s easy to buy into the notion that you “won’t worry about it” until January, is that really the case? Are you really not worrying about your eating at all? Or, more likely, are you spending time and mental energy not feeling good about your choices? Are you ever regretting eating something or regretting overeating and feeling too full? Worried about how much more weight you may gain and what you’ll see when you next step on the scale? Are you worried about your clothes fitting or your winter jacket zipping? Chances are, you’re spending some negative mental energy thinking about your eating. Instead, channel that energy into working on making healthy choices, and you’ll get nothing but benefits! You’re going to expend the mental energy no matter what, but only one way comes with positive consequences.
- Prove to yourself that you don’t need to wait for some artificial deadline (e.g., I’ll start on Monday, I’ll start next month, I’ll start next year) to start working on healthy eating and feeling good about your choices. Prove to yourself that you can start today, whatever day it is. Chances are that by the time you go to bed tonight, you’ll be feeling at least a little bit better than you may be feeling right now. We’ve found that having just one, two, or three good eating days under one’s belt makes them feel immensely better than feeling off track and out of control of their eating. Feeling good is only a few days away – you can do it, and it’s worth it!
Friday Weekend Warm-up: Merry Christmas to those who celebrate! We hope you have a day planned with fun things and good food (that you’ll eat in reasonable portions and feel really good about once the day has passed).
Thursday Think Tip: This whole week, keep in mind: “I won’t regret the extra food I don’t eat, but I definitely will regret overeating. I never regret skipping extra food once the temptation has passed!”
Wednesday Sabotage: I’m off track anyway. I’ll just worry about my eating once the new year hits.
Response: Don’t wait! Every day I stay off track is another day I ultimately don’t feel good about myself or my eating. It’s worth it to recover RIGHT NOW and start feeling good. When I do, then I’ll start the new year in a good place, instead of in a place where I need to make lots of changes.
Tuesday Reality Check: If you’re going to be preparing holiday food this week, make sure you don’t fall into the trap of eating while standing up in the kitchen. Your body processes all calories the same, whether or you’re eating standing up or not.
Monday Motivation: If you’ve received gifted holiday food and feel guilty about not eating it, remember that not eating it doesn’t take away the nice gesture. Make sure you keep your home environment one that works in your favor, not against you. There are enough treats tempting you almost everywhere you look this time of year; your home doesn’t need to add to that.
The Beck Institute Weight Management Program was developed by Dr. Judith S. Beck with Deborah Beck Busis, LCSW.
Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a leading international source for training, therapy, and resources in CBT.
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