MYB EPISODE 6 CHEAT SHEET:
HOW TO START CHANGING YOUR EATING HABITS FOR REAL THIS TIME!
WHY IS IT SO HARD TO CHANGE OUR HABITS EVEN IF WE HAVE A PLAN TO FOLLOW?
- Our subconscious mind drives the vast majority of our thoughts.
- We haven’t yet learned to pay attention to our internal narrative, which is driving the vast majority of our choices.
- We craft stories to help us avoid acting in alignment with our goals (examples below).
- We aren’t convinced that the small choices really matter all that much.
IF YOU’RE FRUSTRATED WITH YOUR LACK OF CONSISTENCY, FOLLOW THE 3 STEPS BELOW TO GET MOVING AGAIN!
STEP 1: MAKE A LIST OF YOUR STORIES
How can we start becoming more aware of the stories that are keeping us from acting on our intentions? We brainstorm and write them down!
Below are some examples from our coaching practice. We encourage you to use this list for inspiration.
Be sure to make your own list (below)! Why? Because when they come up for you, you can make a more conscious decision and perhaps even laugh a little!
EXAMPLES OF STORIES/EXCUSES WE’VE HEARD FROM CLIENTS:
· It's just this one little thing so what's the big deal?
· I’ve been so good, I deserve this!
· I've already screwed up today, so what's the point?
· I'll get back to good choices tomorrow/on Monday/after vacation/after the holidays/when life calms down.
· This is just too hard to eat like this.
· It's better than what I used to do OR it's better than what so and so is doing/eating.
· I've got so far to go, I'll never get there anyway.
· I was too busy to cook or pack my lunch so whatever.
· Screw it, I don't even care anyway!
· I’m too tired so let’s just stop and get nachos/tacos/whatever.
· We’re going out to eat so screw the plan.
· This is a celebration so this doesn’t count…Treat yo’self!
· Life is too short to miss out on this.
· It isn’t fair that my spouse/partner/family gets to eat that while I have to eat this.
· So and so will be hurt if I don't eat some of this __________.
· So and so will feel weird if I choose this while he/she is choosing that. I don't want to make it awkward.
Create your own list and keep in handy so you canbecome more aware of your own stories and start feeling more empowered about your choices!
STEP 2: THE POWER OF THE PAUSE
We are wired to act impulsively. When we are triggered by hunger or cravings, we often go straight for a snack. Let’s start to OWN the pause.
Keep in mind, this doesn’t need to be a long, meditative session!
This is a 3-5 second pause which is enough time to ask (and answer!) the questions below:
Q1: HOW WILL I FEEL ABOUT THIS IN AN HOUR?
That will give you all the information you need to make an empowered, conscious choice.
Q2: WHAT DO I REALLY NEED RIGHT NOW?
If hunger isn’t the problem, food isn’t the solution. How do you know if you’re genuinely, physically hungry? Easy! Does real food sound good (a piece of chicken, a salad, an apple, etc.)? If yes, you’re likely hungry! If these don’t sound good buuuuut a donut/candy bar/soda/pizza/chips DO sound good, you’re likely needing something besides food.
You may need:
· A break
· Some deep breaths
· A glass of water
· A short walk
· A few moments outdoors
· A short nap
Keep in mind: Food is a very quick way to change our emotional state if we’re anxious, procrastinating, bored, etc. That said, eating every time we have an emotional need leaves us feeling sluggish and out of control with food. We also miss the opportunity to give ourselves what we really need in that moment!
STEP 3: BEGIN TO TAKE NOTICE OF THE TIMES OF DAY YOU TEND TO HAVE CRAVINGS. PLAN AHEAD FOR THOSE TIMES!
Example 1: You realize that every afternoon around 3:00, your brain is screaming for a soda or a sugary snack.
If your lunch was high in processed carbs and low in protein and veggies, you may be coming down from a blood sugar spike. In this case, you might consider making some adjustments to your lunch.
If your lunch was extremely low in calories overall, you should try to fix that.
Regardless, while you’re making the above adjustments, you should be realistic about your patterns and plan ahead to have a tasty REAL FOOD snack on hand that has plenty of protein and fiber. Avoid anything TOO tasty such as Quest bars, which taste like candy bars. Avoid snacks that you’re likely to eat this whether you need something or not.
Examples of healthy snacks:
· Apple slices with a tbsp. of almond butter
· Beef jerky and an orange or berries
· A Primal Kitchen or Epic Bar (both are low glycemic and a good source of protein)
Example 2: You find yourself continually going back to the kitchen to graze after dinner, even if you’ve had a satisfying, complete dinner.
You may need to switch up your routine a bit. If you ALWAYS have ice cream/popcorn/chips/etc. on the couch in the evening and you’re wanting to break that habit, you may want to do some stretching on the floor, go take a walk instead of TV, or find a new, fun activity.
In the beginning, a healthy swap can be useful. This might include something like a small dish of coconut milk ice cream with a handful of frozen berries.
CONCLUSION: If you practice following these steps, you’re going to help yourself avoid the frustration and disappointment of finding yourself eating foods you wish you hadn’t. You will start feeling more empowered about food, your goals, and your life. You can’t put a price on that. You've got this!