Yes, sacred like a temple.
Your body is the temple of your soul and your body is trying to communicate with you.
SO it’s important to first make sure you are just observing as opposed to looking at everything with an overly critical eye (be nice). Instead of “I suck, I can’t stop eating chocolate chip cookies” take an empowering stance, “I should try a healthier alternative.” Know that you are the writer of your story and have the power to make healthy lifestyle changes.
But before we can get in to action it helps to get to the root of this issue. Let’s say your goal is to cut out refined sugar completely but your food journal reveals you are having chocolate chip cookies daily.
You want to figure out how to get to the root of this behavior so you may start by asking your self the following questions:
1. Check in with your emotions: Am I reaching for cookies when I am sad? Or happy? Is there a certain emotion that when arises, I try to hide? Bored? Afraid? If you are using food as a way to escape an emotion, what you are really trying to avoid is that sensation. Huh? I’ll explain. Let’s say you are unhappy at work and that cookies/sweets obviously make you feel good.
The real problem then isn’t the cookie it’s that the sensation of being unhappy at work is uncomfortable and probably stressful for you. Your amazing body is protecting you by craving a “safe” tolerable sensation- cookie break! So try to chill out at work, do yoga, meditate, go for a walk do whatever is going to help you tolerate your job. Until your job is a safe space for you, cookies/sweets are the easy choice.
Are you still hungry shortly after eating your regular breakfast?
Do you find yourself getting tired after eating certain foods?
Energy dropping? Agitated?
This one is the easiest to fix. If the issue is the food itself than you just need to keep playing around with food. Have more fun. Experiment with taking out the usual food allergy suspects: dairy, gluten, wheat, and nuts.
Use your food journal to find foods that elevate your mood and help you feel your best.
Are you noticing that you are always snacking off your kid’s plates because you didn’t have time to make anything or forgot to pack a lunch? Plan dinner?
Are you sneaking in sweets before bed because you don’t drink water all day and are mistaking dehydration for a sugar craving?
In this situation the root of the issue is a circumstance that you continue to repeat that makes it most convenient for you to cheat yourself out of a healthy delicious meal. You then, are having those cookies because your lifestyle is supporting it. If this sounds like you then your next step is to create a goal that creates more time to make healthy choices. Keep reading on.
Now that you’ve got to the root of the issue, let’s start making some changes.
Decide on what the appropriate change is for you and take the following steps:
1. Break that habit into tiny, itty-bitty steps, as many as you can think of, for example: My goal is to incorporate more green vegetables in to my breakfast. My steps are to 1. Buy more greens at farmer’s market. 2. Find yummy breakfast recipes with greens online. 3. Choose the days that I am going to do this. 4 Set my alarm clock 20 minutes earlier so that I have enough time to prepare. Etc. Go into as much detail as you can and envision yourself actually doing them. This will make your goal much more feasible and realistic.
2. Follow the steps.
3. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Keep working at it, until it sticks. Make the steps as small as you need to fit in to your lifestyle.
Lastly, this should be fun. For years I used my food journal to attack all my food choices and I used as a testament to how flawed I was and how much I was lacking. I am so much the wiser now; I use my relationship with food to know more about myself. Know that there is a gem to be discovered behind seemingly “bad” habits. Happy hunting.
Diana Rodriguez is a healthy life stylist based in San Francisco. She is the founder of Beautiful and Balanced a health coaching business where she helps women who are not loving their bodies be more fit, find peace and fun with food and finally lose unwanted weight.
You can visit her at www.beautifulandbalanced.com and on Facebook
Are you looking to make healthy changes in 2012? Weight Loss? Freedom from emotional eating? Join Diana’s “Break Free” Bootcamp. This 5 month Virtual Program starts February 1st! Sign up before January 20th and bring a friend for free!
Diana is the great health coach I have been working with so I really appreciate her taking the time to share some amazing advice! I know I have started to see patterns, so now I have the tools to start making changes.