Monday, November 10, 2008

Mistaken Identity

One mistake many dieters make is identifying too closely with their diets. They get their behavior and self-esteem closely tied in with the progress they are making on their diet, and this is not a good thing.

You see, it's very common and to be expected that one day this week you will eat something that you had determined you would not eat. And this does not make you a bad person. It is not a reason to feel guilty. Furthermore, it will do nothing to assure that you revert back to the 'good behavior' of eating healthy. It generally leads to beating yourself up, feeling like a failure, and then comforting yourself with food. That's not helpful is it?

Keep your identity separate from what you eat. Keep reminding yourself of your best qualities and what you are good at. It will help you stay in line with the healthy eating you aim for. When you slip and have a donut at the office, try telling yourself something like this: "I slipped and had a donut without thinking about it seriously. I am still a good person, a good mom, and good at what I do in my job. For the rest of today I will be conscious of what I eat and be sure to include healthy choices. And later today I will be sure to get in some extra stair-climbing or walking to be sure I burn off some of those extra calories".

There. Problem solved. You are still a good person and you will make more good choices today. You can burn off some of the calories (or even all!) that you had not planned on eating today. It is not a tragedy and you are not off track. Just a little blip in your plan.

Keep up the positive thinking. And remember that your eating habits do not define who you are!

Let us know about a time you ate what you hadn't planned and how you got back on track that very same day!

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