It’s a common joke these days that people plan their Thanksgiving outfits around how stretchy the waist band of their pants are. What’s not as funny is the difficult emotions many people face when seated at the dinner table, let alone seated around lots of family members. The holidays are filled with memories, family, favorite dishes, and many times guilt and uncomfortable emotions.
As a health coach, I always encourage my clients to focus on what they can control. Sometimes in hard settings, that means just focusing on controlling our breath. In holiday settings, this many times looks like bringing their own “healthier” option as a side dish. Maybe meeting a basic hydration goal before an event or party. Practicing staying sober or saying “no” to an offer we don’t feel inclined to fulfill. Not having a super restrictive mindset but simply limiting the favorite once a year treats and heavier dishes. Many times restrictions can lead to binging. Know yourself and your personality though, will that “taste” or just small spoonful lead to greater cravings than if you just avoided the dessert table all together?
Allowing yourself to feel the bigger emotions that come up through this season is important. This leads to placing our focus outside of food and material items. A lot of emphasis is placed on the foods that bring us together or the gifts that will no doubt bring you all the peace in the world (yeah right). News flash, that piece of pie and that really great Black Friday Deal (on that thing you didn’t know you needed until it went on sale) will not bring you true contentment or joy. Contentment and joy come from living with what you have, right where you are. Even if right where you are isn’t exactly where you want to be.
What are the things you are going to shift your focus to this holiday season?