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When Eating is a Non-Issue and Food Decisions Just Happen

When you want to get into a routine and build something new into your life, one way to do so is to schedule and plan.  As a chronic dieter, this was (or maybe still is) also true for you when it comes to eating for weight loss (a.k.a. dieting).

 

You schedule the number of meals you’ll eat that day based on when the plan tells you to, and you restructure your life around that plan.  You find that you’re constantly thinking about what you’re supposed to be eating next, will you be eating it “on time” and if you didn’t pack it with you, will you be able to find something comparable.  You find the only thing you are thinking about is food.

 

I want you to remember a time where you weren’t worrying about your weight or your food.  You lived your life and when you were hungry you ate, you stopped when you were full and you weren’t frantically wondering if a food fell into your plan if you wanted to have it.  For many of you trying to get back to this memory, it might take you all the way back to your childhood days—and that’s OK.

 

When you were younger and there’s less to worry about, that carefree attitude translated easier to food.  Eating was just something you did in between all the other fun things you did each day. And you enjoyed every bite you took.

 

This is intuitive eating at its finest….when

 

…..Eating is a Non-Issue and Food Decisions Just Happen

 

Now that you are older and have been influenced by the diet culture that surrounds you, well, it hasn’t been so easy for you to return to the way you were born.

 

I know you have this deep desire to become an intuitive eater again. I know this because I have spoken to hundreds of you wishing it were easier.  I know how easy it is to fall back into diet mentality, and I also know how important support is for you on this journey.

 

Free Training

Join me tomorrow, Thursday September 7 at 8 pm EST for a Facebook Live training where I will discuss how you can make intuitive eating second nature again.

 

I’m going live in my private Facebook group, so if you aren’t yet a member of our group, click here now to join us for free.

 

Here’s what you’ll learn during our Facebook Live training:

  • The #1 reason you struggle with implementing the intuitive eating principles
  • What it really takes to make intuitive eating a part of your being
  • How you can be at peace with food and yourself so you can enjoy life to the fullest

 

Oh, and if you are not on Facebook and want to watch the replay, just send me an email to Bonnie@DietFreeRadiantMe.com and I’ll send you the recording.

 

The Diet Mentality Runs Deep

You’ve struggled with your weight and you’ve tried diet after diet. Sometimes you were successful, sometimes you weren’t. You measure this success in only one way … “did I lose weight?”.

 

By now you recognize that diets don’t work. But, you still want to lose weight. You still want to go down 2 dress sizes. You are still not happy with your current body. Yet, you know that going on another “shake diet” or elimination diet is not the right thing for you. Perhaps you have a sister who struggled with her weight just like you, but she went a different route. She saw a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) who teaches the intuitive eating approach.

 

The “nutritionist” you went to takes food away from you. She convinced you that carbs are “bad”. You are now afraid to eat bread, potatoes, pasta, or any food that has carbs in them. You believe these foods will cause you to gain weight immediately. But your sister convinces you to see her registered dietitian nutritionist. And so, you make an appointment.

 

You like her philosophy. Intuitive eating, something you’ve never heard of before, but really makes a lot of sense to you. But you’re afraid. Afraid to not diet anymore, afraid that if you’re left to your own food decisions, you will eat out of control. You beg the RDN to give you a meal plan but you promise to use it with a healthy mindset.

 

The meal plan is well balanced, using wholesome foods, and yes, it incorporated carbs! Yay! You can eat carbs again. You are happy. You come for your appointments weekly, you say you are okay with the slow rate of weight loss, and you are trying hard to implement the mindful eating strategies she is teaching you.

 

Then it happens. You come for your appointment today and you say, “next Tuesday is a religious fast day, I cannot eat. My weight the next day won’t reflect my real weight. That’s why I’m not coming for my appointment on Wednesday.”

 

Bam, just like that you are back in diet mentality.

 

I have news for you.

 

You never left diet mentality.

 

Every time you came in for your sessions, you focused on the scale, how good or bad you were during the previous week, and spoke about how important it was for you to lose weight and fit into the clothes in your closet that you haven’t fit into for years. And, you allowed the scale to dictate if you were coming in for an appointment or not.

 

The beautiful thing about the sessions I have with my intuitive eating clients is there is no scale involved! Whereas before as a dieter, the main purpose for your session was to “weigh in”, that is not the case when traveling the intuitive eating journey. Instead, it’s about understanding how you got to your current mindset today, overturn those limiting beliefs and negative messages that drive your actions, and begin to really listen and hear your internal signals and trust that they will guide your eating.

 

Dieting has never served you and never will!  I recognize that moving past the diet mentality is difficult as the diet mentality runs deep! As hard as you try on your own to shift out of a dieter’s mindset, you need support.

 

If you’re ready to get rid of the diet mentality for good, feel free to contact me here. It’s my honor to help you achieve food freedom.

 

NOTE:

I put the word “nutritionist” above in quotes because unfortunately in New York State, this is not a regulated term. Anyone can call themselves a nutritionist so you must be careful to whom you get advice from.  Ask them where they got their degree(s) from, and in what field. Don’t assume anything.

 

 

Celebrating Memorial Day as an Intuitive Eater

This weekend is Memorial Day Weekend which for many signals the start of summer! Sunshine, beach days, swimming, biking, relaxing, vacations…this is what I think of when May 31 rolls around.

 

But for you, the chronic dieter, thoughts of overeating at the BBQ, the dread of putting on a bathing suit, and the anticipation of wearing shorts are flooding your mind. You are probably thinking right now that right after this weekend you will start a diet so you are feeling better about your body by July 4th.

 

Sound about right?

 

You are tired of having food fear and body fear. You are tired of saying no to social invitations because there “won’t be any food there that I can eat on my diet”. You are tired of throwing in the towel time and time again saying “I’ll just enjoy myself today and start again tomorrow”.

 

How can you start living life as an intuitive eater as we approach the holiday weekend?

 

Here are 3 tips to get you started:

 

1) Recognize that no one food has the power over you to make you thin or fat. That’s right. Go into your Memorial Day BBQ this weekend without a list of good and bad foods, foods you can and can’t eat. Ask yourself what you really want to eat. Then go get it, put it on a plate and sit down and eat slowly and mindfully, savoring every bite. No guilty feelings, no worry, just enjoy every bite.

 

2) Stay fully present and aware. It’s very easy to get distracted when in a social situation and not pay attention to what or how much you are eating. Remind yourself that you will make conscious decisions around your food choices and will remain tuned in while you eat. Check in periodically as you are eating and remember, if you are satisfied, stop eating. You can always eat that burger another time.

3) Don’t eat to please others. Your host worked hard to put together a wonderful time full of food, drinks and desserts. Great. You ate, and you enjoyed. And now you are satisfied. If your host starts to pressure you to eat more (“Look how much I have left over!!”), just politely tell her how delicious everything was but you just cannot fit another bite in your belly. Stay true to yourself!

 

Have a wonderful celebration this weekend. Let me know how these 3 tips have helped you on your journey back to being an intuitive eater.

 

 

 

 

New Year, More Mindfulness

Whenever the New Year nears, it’s all about “New Year, New Me”.  The “new me” is usually associated with joining the gym and going on a crash diet, all to lose a few pounds.  Instead of starting your New Year off with enjoyment and ready to tackle what comes your way, you’re starting it off with food restrictions and stress about going to the gym and “needing” to lose the weight.

 

Why do you associate the New Year with weight loss?

 

Let’s try something different this New Year and reframe your thought process.  Change your “New Year, New Me” mentality into “New Year, More Mindfulness”.  By taking a step back from focusing solely on weight loss and what your body looks like, you’ll develop a greater appreciation for what your body is capable of and what it needs to be its best.

 

Here are 5 tips on how to, or continue to, be mindful in the New Year:

 

  1. Recommit to your diet-free journey. Remind yourself why you began your intuitive eating journey, or are planning to begin it. Then every time another commercial hits the airwaves, an email pops up in your inbox or your friend chews your ear off with the new diet she is on, quietly repeat this mantra to yourself “I have committed to a diet-free life. I rock!”

 

  1. State your New Year intention. Set a clear intention about what you want to experience in 2017 and what steps you will take to reach your goals. Write down your big intention and keep it in a visible spot around your home.  Reflect back on it throughout the year when you need a reminder about what you want to accomplish by 2018!!

 

  1. Listen to your body. Instead of focusing on the weight you “need” to lose and restricting your favorite foods, focus on listening to your body. What is your body trying to tell you?  Does it want you to stop dieting?  Does it want you to feed it nourishing meals?  By taking the time to listen to your body, you’ll develop a stronger relationship with it and you’ll learn to love your body.

 

  1. Practice moderation, not deprivation. You may feel like you need to deprive yourself to avoid weight gain, but that’s not true. When you deprive yourself, the backlash is overeating and bingeing.  If you take the time to listen to your body and savor each bite, you’ll find you are satisfied with smaller portions.

 

  1. Avoid celebrating with food. Whenever something good happens in life, birthday, promotion, anniversary, etc., going out to eat is the common way to celebrate. But, if you’re struggling with your relationship with food, this can be a difficult time.  Instead of going out to eat to celebrate an occasion, find another way to celebrate that makes you feel comfortable and happy,

 

By becoming more mindful of your body and what your body needs, you’ll be able to give your body what it wants.  With mindfulness, you’ll learn to become an intuitive eater.  You’ll be able to avoid overeating, feeding your emotions and loving your body once again.

 

If you want to talk, just contact me here.

 

Being Mindful With Godiva Chocolate

Chocolate bar chunks with almonds 2One of the beautiful things about being an intuitive eater is being able to eat what I love! I don’t have to worry anymore about whether eating a particular food will cause me to gain weight or not.

 

One of the doubts I often hear from my clients is whether or not they will actually choose nutritious foods once they give themselves permission to eat what they love and desire when they are hungry. And I tell them YES, you will. Once you give yourself that unconditional permission to eat, you will find that you will gravitate towards lighter healthier foods, and your meals will be well-balanced nutritionally. It’s just something that happens when you begin to experience how great you feel eating these foods.

 

You will also find that the heavy, less healthy foods don’t seem so desirable after a while. The physical and/or emotional discomfort from eating those foods becomes burned in your memory, and you won’t want to repeat.

 

This doesn’t mean there is no place in your eating for what I call “play foods”. Of course there is.  Let me share a recent story.

 

My husband and I were on vacation in Las Vegas two weeks ago. As we were walking through one of the casino hotel’s shopping areas, we stopped at the Godiva Chocolate store to watch them make chocolate dipped strawberries. We walked inside and an employee was giving out small samples of chocolate covered caramels. These were very small, similar to the size of a small paper clip. The employee put one in my palm; I picked it up and took a bite. I savored it, allowing it to melt in my mouth so I could taste the chocolate and the caramel. I then took a second bite. It was delicious. It hit the spot.

 

I took notice of how other people were eating these chocolate samples. Some took one to two bites as I did, but others popped it into their mouths. I overheard a man saying to his wife that he could eat a few more. His wife said one was just enough for her. What was the difference, why did he need more and why didn’t she? I noticed he was one of those people who popped it into his mouth without even tasting it. It was down before he could even think about what he just ate. His wife, on the other hand, took two bites and savored each one.

 

My point is…eating healthy doesn’t mean depriving yourself of your favorite foods or treats. Part of learning to become an intuitive eater is learning to be a mindful eater. Enjoy every bite you take, with purpose, and you will have great pleasure in your foods, those that are nutrient dense and those that are “play foods”.  Tune into your belly as you are eating, and let your stomach be your guide. You will know when you have had just enough.

 

The more you practice these techniques, the more intuitive you will become, and you will see, weight loss will start happening, without you worrying about the scale and about the effects foods will have on your weight.

 

Do you want to discuss how you can become a mindful eater?  Just click here and we will set up a time.

Gotta Love Your January as an Intuitive Eater

Healthy HabitsThis time of the year can seem like the hardest time for an intuitive eater.  You can’t go anywhere without being bombarded with headlines like, “Lose 30 pounds in 30 days!” or “The Hottest Diet Secret Nobody Ever Told You About!”

 

It can be easy to start your year off getting swept up in these empty promises, and by February find yourself feeling lost on another diet road.

 

By being an intuitive eater, you know your journey leads you down a better road: a journey that doesn’t end when “failure” sets in mid-February.  January is truly the beginning of a brand new year, with many exciting discoveries ahead of you.  Unlike those with a diet mentality, you know better than to waste your money, time and energy on buying into new fads, expensive gym memberships, and those quick fix “magic bullets” that have failed you in the past.

 

Your personal January headlines read something more like this, “I Continue to Make All Foods Fit by Honoring My Hunger and Respecting My Fullness”.  Or, “I’m On My Way to Loving and Respecting My Body!”  These headlines are much more encouraging and much more fun.  For you January is a continuation of all the positives you have been building on since last year.

 

There is usually so much stress involved in choosing which diet will accompany you into the New Year.  But since you are creating an intuitive lifestyle, you get to build off success, rather than focus on flaws which diets often lead you into doing.  By being an intuitive eater you get to truly enjoy the start of a new year, by knowing that it is a continuation off of everything you have been achieving.  Make a choice to love what you have done and know you can keep working towards the body you love without dieting!

 

Your turn to take action: Please share with me how this New Year feels different, starting it as an intuitive eater versus a dieter!