How are you all doing this holiday season? Is what’s in this picture all that’s in your life right now? (It is for me.)
Are you enjoying the season? Are you caught up in the hustle and bustle? Are you throwing all caution to the wind by accident on purpose? Are you stressed? Are you done shopping? Are you sad this holiday season?
I know, a lot of questions but I only ask because I care! This time of the year is the time for total bombardment. Yes it is beautiful and wonderful and boy am I having fun with kids who are really starting to enjoy the season!
But the holiday season also just happens to be the time of year that everything seems to escalate emotionally, no matter where you are in your life and everything is magnified, including the food. There are parties after parties, baking, cookie exchanges, feasts, (and in my life FOUR birthday celebrations.) There are the songs, the gatherings, bringing back memories, making new memories, and all of it pretty intense.
I have personally had a whirlwind of a holiday season this year and it began with the death of my grandmother a few weeks ago and in turn, the downward spiral that became emotional eating.
The week of her funeral I didn’t eat or I ate too much. Family was in town so I did not run or work out, not even for a second. And one week turned to two and then came the sadness of losing someone around the holidays. Remembering how she loved when we’d take her to go look at Christmas lights, writing out my Christmas cards and seeing her address in my book and not sending one to her, not having to wrack my brain to come up with something crazy creative because she has everything she needs. Not inviting her to Christmas dinner.
Some people can vent healthily, but instead, I have turned to food.
I am only saying this out loud because I have a bad habit of eating when I am sad, of not eating when I am sad, and in general, simply not taking care of myself when I am sad. Or when I am so busy that I don’t even have time to be sad and then that makes me angry. So I want to use my experience this holiday season as a PSA for you.
Because honestly the holiday season can be an extremely emotional time no matter where you are in your life. There are highs and they are high and there are lows and they are low.
This year I was reminded of how just one life event will throw a wrench into the wheel and unravel all of the work you’ve been doing for weeks, perhaps months, even years.
Before I knew it, a couple weeks had gone by and I had allowed all of those habits I have worked so hard to change to seep right back into my life.
- The forgetting to eat and then ordering fast food at 10 p.m.
- Not making time to work out
- Eating fast food several times a week (or even several times a day!)
- Incessantly taste-testing cookies and cookie batter
- Having a few extra cocktails
- Eating out of pure sadness
Etc. etc. etc!
And all to the tune of a couple extra pounds (already!) It is how it all starts for me and in the past I have never been quick enough to catch it. But this year that is changing.
I’m not going to say I’m “being bad,” because I don’t believe in making myself out to be a bad person because I’ve made a few poor choices. But I do believe now in stopping before it gets out of hand. Because this is where it all starts. A couple of pounds here and a couple of old habits and voila! Back at the starting line.
Now I don’t know if you need an intervention but I certainly did and in my history of yo-yo-ing, no one in my life has told me, “Hey, girl, you’ve put on a few pounds!” and let’s face it, if they did, I’d probably have popped them, but now I’m well-versed enough in myself to recognize the symptoms of a downward spiral and it has begun.
And since no one is going to give me an intervention, I decided to intervene on myself so I rounded up all my inner selves and confronted my inner self lovingly and when my inner self walked into the room thinking it was a cute little a surprise party, it was a little disappointed that it was really invited to an intervention. But in the end my inner self was thankful.
Because since the intervention, I am currently on day 12 of no fast food.
I have also begun seeing a personal trainer and this past weekend is the first time ever that I ran 10 miles before running our Jingle Bell 10k, because there was a training run to be done and it wasn’t going to go away because I had registered for a 10k (and I am still sore. Very, very sore.) I have scaled back on the cookie eating. I choose a few of my favorites and then move on to enjoy the social part of the cookie exchange rather than the cookie part or start taking lots of pictures to distract myself. I am planning out my meals again. If necessary, I work out before my husband goes to work instead of skipping it all together. Just little things to make myself feel better. Little changes that I can make to roll with the punches until the holidays are over and routine is back to normal. And the sadness subsides.
So here it is.
If you need an intervention because you’re watching the scale creep up instead of down for whatever reason in the world, I am giving you the opportunity to intervene among yourselves for yourselves. No one is going to give you an intervention. You have to do it yourself. We’re too sensitive for that anyway, if someone tried to tell us to put down the cheese cube, we’d probably eat 10 cheese cubes right in front of them and wash it down with cake to prove a point. Which doesn’t really work out for anyone, but still.
But since no one is actually confronting you, you are just reading this and deciding for yourself if you need an intervention or not, you don’t have to feel bitter that someone is calling you out. In fact, you could be doing great and staying strong this holiday season! (Hurrah for you! That was me last season. Not this one.) Or you could be nodding along with me and agreeing that you need an intervention like I did.
If you are deciding to call an intervention on yourself, feel free to repeat after me: “I’m not a bad person. I am a good person who’s made some poor choices.” See? Don’t you feel better already?
And then hold your personal intervention by pinpointing some of your poor choices and trying to find ways around them. Just, you know, to be ahead of the curve come January when everyone is wayyy past the point of intervention.
So let’s get personal here. Have you had any life-altering events go on this holiday season? Have you remained steadfast and strong? How many parties are you going to? And does holiday shopping equal Starbucks (like it does for me?) How have you dealt with the emotional aspects of the holidays?
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