It’s easy to over do food and treats when you are constantly attending parties, work activities, etc. during the holiday season. Then after a couple weeks, you aren’t feeling well, your skin is breaking out and your clothes are feeling a little snug. I like to enjoy the holidays, food and all, but I try to avoid that uncomfortable, over-stuffed feeling. Here are a couple tips I use to stay feeling like myself:
1. Set intentions - pick and choose your indulgent occasions. l try to think about what my intentions are before going to an event. For example, at so-and-so’s holiday party, my intention is to connect with old friends and meet some new people. I’m not going for the food, so I will only have one small treat. But at my close friend’s dinner party, I am choosing to get cozy, truly relax and will happily indulge in the cheese spread, bread and baked goods.
2. Bring a warm healthy beverage. If I know I’m going somewhere with lots of yummy treats and I don’t want to indulge, I bring a cup of hot tea with me. I find that I often eat unknowingly at parties, OR I knowingly do not want to be eating that food, but I do so anyways to keep occupied. If I have something in my hand, like my mug of tea, I can resist the bowls of chips and plates of cookies, because my hands are full and I can take sips of my yummy tea in between awkward silences and pauses in conversation instead of stepping towards the food table. It also keeps me hydrated and fills me up so I don’t get hungry either.
3. Say no. In my opinion, it is totally acceptable to politely pass on food and drink offers at someone’s party. Don’t worry about feeling like you have to accept because it would be rude not to indulge the host or you will hurt their feelings (my husband disagrees). I hate that. No one should be pressured to put any food or drink in their body that they don’t want to. I’ve always been a picky eater, I usually don’t eat meat and hardly drink alcohol, so I’m pretty used to saying ‘no thank you’, but I know it can be hard for some people. I’m giving you permission! Try it. Plus, once you do it a couple times, it will be easy after that.
4. Walk. I try to walk as much as possible. If my sister is in town.. let’s go for a walk to chat. My good friend is in town… let’s walk along the cliffs and catch up. This keeps my body moving, and gives my mind some fresh air. I will say, this is very easy to do living in Santa Cruz, CA where it’s usually sunny and 70 degrees. So if you are in a cold climate or bad weather, look for an indoor space to do this (indoor shopping mall or running track, a large museum).