It's going to take extreme ownership for your food intake. Don't blame it on your aunt for putting pie in front of you. Don't blame it on your co-workers who bring in food. Don't blame it on your spouse. Don't blame it on the party you feel obligated to go to.
Everyone else gets to own what they eat too. It's freedom. The other people get the same freedom as you.
Decide to OWN it. Every bite that you put into your body. OWN IT.
Don't argue with anyone about why you make the choices. They won't get it. They will tempt you. They might even make fun of you. When you start losing weight some will cheer you on, others will say you are starving yourself. Some will eventually say you are too skinny, because society has accepted a new norm for body weight, even obesity. It also makes others feel insecure when you succeed at fat loss.
Do not give others ownership for your food. You own it. You own your body, not them. If someone offers you cake and you want it, but are making the choice to not have it, just say "NO THANK YOU". You do not have to explain it to them. You own it not them.
If you decide to have the cake. OWN IT. Just own it. Then do what you have to do moving forward. Manage your food intake like a budget. It's not the end of the world if you went over your calorie budget, it's just a problem to fix. So fix the problem.
So you have bad eating habits, what can you do?
It’s a good thing we don’t have to be perfect. We just motor on and never give up. We make the best choices we can each day, don’t beat ourselves up, just keep moving forward.
Stay positive and prune out all negative junk (news, magazines, attitudes, and people) as it will hinder progress.
Motivation gets us started, habits get us there and keep us there.
Here’s some great links on changing habits:
What about stress and eating?
Food and stress! This is the hardest part for everyone. You are not alone. Stress makes us all hungry and all stress is cumulative.
Everyone in modern society right now has stress, unfortunately is it part of our lives and we all have to develop strategies to deal with it.
There is nothing wrong with you specifically, this struggle is built into every single human being. We all gravitate towards comfort foods when stressed. It is the human condition.
So much of the time when you think you are hungry for food you are really hungry for comfort. Love, hugs, sleep, warmth, or just relief from stress.
Try writing down your feelings and see if there is something else you can do instead – I bet you will find it. Start finding your comfort away from food. Maybe create windows of time where you don’t eat and focus on this thought.
Stress causes the hormone leptin to drop and the hormone ghrelin to increase. The drop in leptin makes you less satisfied with food so you always want more. The increase in ghrelin makes you more hungry. Since we are all human this is what happens.
When I have too much stress (pretty much every day for me) I have to remind myself to eat my allotted portions. Then as soon as I’m done eating (I always want more!) I have to remind myself I can have more next time.
Then I drink a big glass of water and "get the heck out of dodge" (away from food, away from the kitchen, etc) and immediately get involved in a chore or work project. I focus all my thoughts on the work and soon I immersed in my work.
Reduce stress when you have control to do so. If you have the choice to do something when you should be getting some sleep, see if you change your decision to sleep instead.
Here are some articles on reducing stress:
Work and Stress Management
20 ways to reduce stress
What about setting up your environment for success?
This can’t be done on willpower alone so you must set up your own life environment for success.
This gets better as you do it more, and it becomes a habit. Practice makes perfect.
Everyone lives their own lifestyle so you will have to learn and find what you can do to fix every situation where you fail. I would suggest writing down what happened and then writing down what you could have done to prevent it.
Setting up your environment for success is different for each person and the “training wheels” are something you will need to design for your own life. I will list some examples. They may seem drastic but for many of us this is what it takes at first, and then we can use smaller training wheels.
Some of the techniques we keep for life, because it’s just hard and we can’t do everything on willpower alone. In fact willpower fails us. We must avoid temptation.
One of my many bosses, John Barban, had to remove all food from his house. His life was setup to do this. He went out each day and got the specific amount of food needed for the day and that was that. It worked for him.
I live remote so that didn’t work for me, I had to get my husband on board to help me. We got all tempting foods out of the house. He said he would go out and get his treats when he was out and about and not bring them home.
Sometimes I had to leave the room when I couldn’t eat what he was eating so I sequestered myself in my room and got busy with work and went to bed early. I avoided the kitchen. I used the “get out of dodge” technique I described earlier. I still do this whenever I need it to maintain my shape.
I said no to many social events for awhile. This avoided peer pressure and temptation. This was hard but it’s part of the corrective action phase of fat loss. Corrective action of weight loss is not forever. It doesn’t mean you can never go out, but you must be choosy about it and it needs to be special and an eating strategy planned for yourself.
I even went as far as having my husband put a lock on the freezer. It was a pain for both of us, but I had to ask him to get the meat and veggies for me so I could prepare meals. This way I avoided the temptation of certain foods that were needed to be kept in the freezer. Now I don’t need the lock anymore, but there are evenings when I feel I can’t face the temptation so I’ll still sometimes as him to get me something I need from the freezer.
Those are just examples of what worked for me in my environment. You will have a different environment and might find some ideas from others in online communities.
What about work place stress and constant temptation for food?
Several places I work are in a work environment where there is constant temptation for food. This is a common problem for most people.
Here is an article that can give you some tips for that:
Five ways to avoid workplace food temptations
You need to take take steps to reduce stress and I’ve listed the tools here for you to do that. Write things down and read the links which give you ideas. We all leak away stress free time until we dig deep to see what needs to be changed, just little things usually.
You need to take the time to figure out how to set up your environment for success. It may seem drastic but they are training wheels that we all need.
Fat loss is doomed to fail if we rely on willpower alone. It is not possible. Only you can do this for your own life. No amount of inspiration from others will do this for you. You need to look at your life and setup your own environment for success.
What to eat to make you feel better?
Make sure you are getting your protein in first. Good protein levels will make you feel better.
Most of us who have the best success with fat loss make sure to eat mostly healthy protein and vegetables. We might alternately increase fat or carbohydrates with the rest of our calorie budget. What matters most is the running daily average over time, yet staying fairly consistent with protein.
Here is more on habits, mindset, and success:
1. Avoid the temptation
2. Distract yourself
3. Mentally transform your temptation
4. Create an “if-then” plan
5. Minimize Stress
Where those 5 steps came from
I hope this helps!
Never Give Up
Live Your Dream