“Cindy, I thought of you on vacation this year. Our whole family went to the beach together. I ate seafood and swam and rode bikes with my nephews. Just enjoyed myself “whole-heartedly” as you would say. I didn’t feel guilty about eating ice cream or anxious about wearing my swimsuit. It hit me that finally, at 57, I am free. I can’t tell you how good it feels!”
This gives me chill bumps! I’ve had the joy of walking alongside hundreds of brave people as they step off the crazy-making diet/binge roller-coaster, and move into a peaceful, intuitive food-life. Coaching people along this path is a privilege I never take for granted.
Most people who join The Liberated Eater share my past – we’ve dieted for decades, fought with ourselves and our bodies for far too long, lost and gained the same weight too many times to count and can’t stand the thought of one more diet. We want a permanent solution – a sustainable, livable lifestyle that brings health, peace and freedom to mind and body.
So, what does it take to make a life-style change that sticks? It takes a new mindset and some new behaviors, lived out over time…until the new ways become our new normal.
Here are some of the important MINDSET pieces of true change:
- KNOW YOUR MOTIVATION – Wanting it for yourself, not for someone else.
- FIND YOUR PEEPS – Stay in touch with others who understand and are on the same path you’re on. Human beings don’t make lifestyle changes alone. When we try to, we usually end up like the poor caribou on National Geographic who gets separated from the herd…
- UNDERSTAND HOW CHANGE WORKS – It isn’t quick and it isn’t neat, and it’s not supposed to be. It’s messy and meaningful – and worth every bit of effort you put into it.
- DON’T DEMAND PERFECTION – No one does this perfectly and no one has to. Know up front that you will stumble sometimes and that’s OK. Just hang onto your sense of humor and your support base when you do. Our TLE Community is the perfect place to find understanding reinforcements we all need.
- LEARN FROM YOUR MISTAKES – Instead of wasting time berating yourself, think through what happened, and talk it through with a fellow-traveler. There will be much to learn that will make you wiser and stronger next time. Stumbling is your best school.
- GET GRITTY – Decide up front that you’re in this for the long haul – even when you want to quit. Time, support, practice and courage bring real change.
Of course there are other things too – like living with food and your body in a mindful way. But when we begin to change the way we THINK the other pieces fall into place much more easily.
You can do this. You can find and keep a lifestyle that fits you and your goals. You can go on vacation and feel good in your body and your mind at every age!