It happens to us all — you’ve been crushing your health goals and things are going great. Until the holidays roll around and the endless array of goodies at the family Thanksgiving gathering derails you…or so you think. We often feel shame afterward and it’s common to let these “slip-ups” demotivate us. The important piece of this puzzle is learning how not to let such a thing hinder you and how to find your motivation to jump back on track.
Here are a few of my favorite ways I do this in my own life…
Don’t use a slip-up as an excuse. When you have a cupcake that you deemed forbidden to eat, an easy trap to fall into is turn it into a downward spiral. You feel as if you’ve already “messed up” so what’s another cupcake, or three? This mindset often continues with the rest of your day — you’ll just turn it into a cheat day, you say. When you reason with yourself in this way you can easily let one treat turn into an entire day or weekend of less than healthy eating choices. Not only do you feel bad emotionally, but you feel bad physically too which can lead to even more poor choices. Don’t let one treat spoil your plans; bounce right back and choose to balance your decision with a very healthy lunch or an extra side of greens at dinner. Enjoy the cupcake then move right along.
Observe and learn from your habits. Instead of seeing your slip-up as a failure, find the lesson in it. Often people tend to identify with the mistakes or successes they experience. I invite you to look at the slip-up and search for the reasons behind it.
Not long after my husband and I got married I suddenly found myself with uncontrollable cravings for Braums chocolate almond ice cream every Saturday afternoon during the summers. I didn’t understand why I was suddenly so desperate for ice cream. I knew it was not healthy, but I just had to have it. It took several summers of this before I happened to remember that when I was a kid my father would take my sisters and me out for ice cream on hot Saturday afternoons during the summer. My father had been dead for nearly 20 years by this time. It dawned on me that it wasn’t ice cream that I was craving, I was actually missing my dad.
This was a bittersweet realization. But once I made the connection the intense cravings for ice cream quickly diminished. I still crave ice cream every now and then, but I’m able to choose healthier frozen treats. And yes, I still think of my dad while enjoying them.
I encourage you to dig deep to find what triggered you to make the choices you did. This can lead to finding a way to prevent it from becoming a habit in the future. Sometimes a fresh gelato on vacation is just a necessity! But when habits creep in that derail your health plans on a regular basis, they are worth observing and learning from.
Seek out for support from others
Feeling supported and being motivated by others is a great way to breeze past your slip-ups and get back in the health game. That’s exactly what I do as a Functional Nutrition Therapist, and I’d love to chat with you about how I can help you reach your health goals and not get derailed.
When you’ve used these tips and given yourself the pep-talk that you need, then you’re ready to move on from the slip-up and continue on your health journey. Small slips will no longer sabotage your motivation or send you into a tail spin. Having the wisdom to see it for what it is, and not let it keep you from pursuing your goals, is the fuel that will keep you on track for many years to come.
Looking for support on your health journey? Book a complimentary 20-minute phone consultation with me and let’s see how I can help you reach your health goals.