The 25 days of Christmas: How to keep in touch with your best self over the holiday season
CREATE SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENTS
What are supportive environments?
Places that support you in your focus and goals.
Maybe it's easier to envision non-supportive environments. Picture this. Your goal is to run a marathon in the spring and your training starts pre-Thanksgiving. You have at least 5 parties to go to between the months of November and January and each one more extravagant than the last. You walk in and see tables and tables of finger food, drinks and cookies. Good for you because you're famished since you just had time to squeeze in your run before you came. Not so good for you because not a single thing on the spread in front of you is going to take you closer to your goal of becoming fit and healthy enough to run a marathon. You need substance, remember the run? Oh well, you have no choice, you're here now. You spend the night eating (how many was it?) 9 or 10 cookies along with plenty of grazing conversations next to the finger food table. You go home, go right to bed and wake up in the morning for your work out and feel like your legs are made of led. 1 party down 4 more to go.
It is easy to see how non supportive that was to her goal of staying fit over the holidays for her training program. Let' go over how she could have handled that differently.
How do you create supportive environments?
It takes a little bit of aforethought and is most certainly a learning process. You must start to think ahead and plan how you can make each situation supportive to your goals.
Picture this. Same goal, same party. You walk in and see tables and tables of finger food, drinks and cookies. You came famished since you just had time to squeeze in your run before leaving the house. But the food around you doesn't phase you yet because you know that the one dish you brought along is packed with enough nutritional value to stave off your initial hunger and keep you from grazing all night and is going to take you closer to your goal of becoming fit and healthy enough to run a marathon. You need substance. You spend the rest of the night eating 3 cookies that you have been excited for all year and consciously make sure that your conversations do not end up next to the finger food table. You go home, go right to bed and wake up in the morning refreshed and ready for your work out- happy about the choices you made. 1 party down 4 more to go. Bring it on!
The moral of this story is: don't put yourself in situations that only set you up for failure or depend on your "will power." Will power is not going to be enough to sustain you, especially when there are other people involved. Maybe this means you make sure you don't go to a party hungry, or bring along a dish you feel good eating. Maybe it means getting rid of the candy dish that you leave on the table for guests (how many do guests actually eat?). Take time to think about how you can create the most supportive environment for you while not completely denying yourself the things that you love.
25 Days of Christmas SeriesIntroduction
Remember who you are
How to keep your focus
Rethink holiday traditions