The holidays are upon us. It’s a time for celebration, traditions, and catching up with loved ones. And all of these things will likely include food. Unfortunately, it often comes with a helping of guilt, shame, and the promises of future dieting. Possibly served by ourselves, a loved one, or not-so loved one.
So how can we approach this holiday season without guilt as our plus one at the table?
Give Yourself Some Perspective
There are lots of things that are different about the holidays. More get-togethers. Sparkly, light up decorations. Sending a boatload of cards. Celebratory foods are just one part of lots of things that are different. Enjoy and connect with foods this season but drop the judgment and accept the natural ebb and flow of this time of year, and every time of year.
Go in With a Mantra
With diet and body talk swirling around us this season, it’s helpful to have a grounding, coping thought if you find yourself taking food guilt on. Some of our favorites: “Food is not morally good or bad”, “Food is not something to earn or to be punished for”, “I will be gentle with myself and offer myself kindness during this meal”.
Up the Self-Care
The holidays can be great, but they can also be a lot! It’s OK to feel overwhelmed and not in the jolliest of moods. Think about what self-care you can offer yourself during this busy time of year. Bundling up for a walk, saying no to an invite, reading a favorite book, starting meditation. Whatever it is, know that in the season of giving it’s also important to give to yourself.
Ditch the Diet For the New Year
So much of our food guilt can come in December because of our culture’s regular push for diets, cleanses, and overall reinvention into living our “best life” come January. If you have followed this pattern over the years, we welcome you to take a step back. Consider your history on this diet rollercoaster, ask how it’s served you, and get curious about how you may eat if you never felt that the next diet was coming.