How do I give up dieting?
I meet a lot of people who want to give up dieting, but have no idea how to start. A client described it perfectly for me the other day, she said “I am always either detoxing or re-toxing.” What is the middle ground where we just eat like a regular person? How do we get there?
For me it was easy, I had totally hit rock bottom, I could not face another diet, ever! From this place the answer was simple. But you don’t have to hit rock bottom to start climbing out. All you have to do is make the decision and commit to it, and you can make this decision today!
But if that feels too confronting for you, then give yourself a time frame. Commit to not dieting for 12 months, or if that seems a stretch, then try 6 months. Whatever time from you choose the key is to really commit to it. Because no matter what you do (or don’t do) the time is going to pass anyway.
I can almost hear you thinking “this is all good Suzanne, but HOW do I actually DO it?” HOW?!
I suggest you start with eating only when you are hungry, and stopping when you are no longer hungry.
Now for many of you, you may not know what it feels like to be hungry. You may think hungry is “body screaming and I will eat anything in sight” – now that is not hungry, that is famished, and if you let yourself get that hungry then this method won’t work.
Hungry is different for different people, for me its a little sensation in my chest, like a niggle. If I ignore it, then it becomes a growl in my stomach, and if I ignore that it becomes lightheadedness, by which time I am ‘hangry’ and if that is the case DO NOT talk to me, I don’t handle hangry well.
You stop eating when you are full. Now full is not ‘unbutton my pants and roll me from the table’ – that feeling is stuffed and if you can’t visualise this from my description, imagine post-Christmas lunch! It took me MONTHS to define full. Now I can detect the bite before full, its once again a feeling in my chest, but lower than hunger. For you it might be something else. If you are not sure if you are there or not, put your fork down and wait a few minutes before continuing.
A lot of people struggle to eat this way, we have been conditioned over the years to “eat everything on our plate because of starving children overseas” or “if you eat everything you can have dessert” or “we don’t waste food!”
If this conditioning is overpowering and you are struggling with this exercise I suggest you start with drinking instead of eating. Most of us have never been criticised for drinking (and yes I am talking about water here!)
Do the same as above but for thirst. When you find yourself reaching for a drink ask yourself “how do I know when I am thirsty?” and when you stop “How do I know I’ve drunk enough?” and when you have nailed it for water, try again with food!
This is the kind of thing I work on individually with my clients. If you would like some 1:1 support to work through this further please CLICK HERE.
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