Three Agreements to Help You Stop Dieting

The word diet makes me think of deprivation and hunger, followed by a rebellion against myself. And while many of you know that I did do an online weight program after my third and final kid was born to lose the baby weight, and that was a great way to get serious and just do it. But now that I’m more or less at my goal weight and just maintaining things or occasionally having to get rid of the five pounds that creeps on here and there when I’m not looking – I find that I’m happiest about my body when I am naturally doing just a few things, by simply being nice to myself, by taking care of myself.

Here are a few agreements I’m trying to make – in an effort to see the food that I eat as a way to give back to this body that does so much for me each day.

1. Eat what you want mindfully and enjoy every bit of it.
Eat really yummy stuff. Don’t eat things that you don’t find delicious and don’t eat while you are watching TV or working on the computer.

2. If you have a craving for something, have a bit, but just a bit. I notice that the first two bites of cherry cheesecake or cookies and cream ice cream or crème brulee taste the very, very best. After that, I might was well be slurping up straight mayonnaise what with all the guilt I feel. And then I have to remind myself that I’m in adult and, thus, I am in charge – maybe not of how my living room looks much of the time, but at least I’m in charge of when and what I eat. If I get hungry later, I can have a little more. I don’t have to clean my plate. When I’m full, I can even put my plate in the fridge and eat more later. If I can do these things, I stop thinking about food. The chocolate no longer calls to me from the cupboard. I can whisper back to those lovely morsels that they must wait for another time, when I will eat them slowly and consciously, giving each one the love and attention it so deserves.

3. Do something each day that you enjoy to get your body moving outside in nature. If you love photography, go out for a walk in the wide, wide world and take your camera along to document what you see. Go for a bike ride or a run or a hike and feel the freedom that comes with moving your body in the sunshine. Do something that makes your hair flop against your scalp and makes you stink a little bit and makes you feel totally and utterly alive for a few minutes a day.

Sometimes, when we launch these great big plans and goals, we forget that we can start with the smallest little steps and, done correctly, these small little steps can snowball into great big rewards, sometimes all on their own.

I’m a big Gretchen Rubin fan. Her book The Happiness Project: Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Funis available now for preorder and promises to be dy-no-mite.) Here’s a piece she did on her blog that I think you’ll like: Five Tips for Cutting Calories without really Dieting – in fact, without really noticing.

Written by Momscape founder Susie Michelle Cortright. Follow her on Twitter.

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