If you're like me and have gone somewhat public with your weight loss efforts, there are many around you who are very much aware of the changes you're trying to make. They know you're cutting calories and making every attempt to avoid overindulgence in rich, fattening foods. What they DON'T know is how hard it is to get back on the wagon when you fall off. What they DON'T know is the guilt you feel when you eat too much, or have that donut you promised yourself you wouldn't touch, and how that guilt torments you and discourages you and spirals you toward more bad choices. This would, at least in part, explain why they, with no ill intentions, continually enable you by saying things like:
"Just put your diet on hold for today. It's a special occasion."
"It's your birthday! Go for it!"
"Come on, it's Christmas. One bad day won't kill you."
Perhaps not. The problem is, in a society that centers every celebration around food, there's no such thing as just ONE bad day. Every day is a birthday, Christmas, a family get together, an office lunch meeting, a night out with friends, a church party, a holiday dinner of some sort. So what does that leave us poor dieters? A couple Tuesdays per month, I think.
Food addiction is like any other addiction in that one day WILL kill you, or at least kill your progress and efforts. I can't think of any reasonably kind human being who would tell a recovering alcoholic, "Hey, it's your birthday ... drink it up, old girl! It's only one day!" Yet we food-a-holics don't receive the same degree of sensitivity to our struggles.
Of course, ultimately it's not anyone's fault but mine if I go for that forbidden donut. No one picked it up and shoved it down my pie hole. I have to be the one to quit telling myself that one day isn't going to hurt anything, or that I can pig out tonight and start (AGAIN) tomorrow. If I eat now, I can pay later, right? I'll be extra good tomorrow (or on Monday) so that I can be extra bad right now and get that instant fix.
No more "eat now, pay later" for me. No more borrowing from tomorrow so I can splurge today. Yes, there will be the OCCASIONAL indulgences. Life needs balance. But I've borrowed against too many tomorrows that never came. The time to take care of myself is NOW. Not after the holidays or the parties or the dinner dates. Those events will always be there, calling my name, assuring me that "this one time won't hurt anything," until one time turns into two, then three, then weeks, months , years.
How do YOU get through all of those "special" days and stay on track?