You’ve set out to stop binge eating and lose the weight it caused you to gain.
You’re ready for this!
You’ve told your friends, significant other, co-workers, and roommate about your goal so you can be held accountable.
Then, you’re out to dinner with one of them and they have the nerve to ask you if you want to order dessert.
You think to yourself, “Dessert? Are you kidding me? You KNOW I’m trying to eat better!”
You’re furious. Now you’re stuck here being pissed at them for having asked and also debating whether or not you want to order dessert.
How dare they put you in this position.
You want to be good, yet now you can’t stop thinking about that amazing brownie sundae you saw on the menu.
So you say yes and that you’ll have just one bite. One bite won’t hurt.
But then you eat half of the sundae.
And it’s their fault.
If they had never asked if you wanted dessert then you would have been able to walk out of there feeling great about the healthy meal you just had.
It’s clear to you that they aren’t supporting you and don’t care about you reaching your goals, otherwise they never would have brought it up.
But is that really true?
I bet if you ask them they’d say no. They just wanted dessert.
But you’re making it mean so much more than that.
Too often we interpret other people’s actions to mean something they were not at all intending.
When someone offers food, or eats food in front of you that you don’t want to see, it doesn’t mean they don’t support or care about you.
You’re just making it mean that they don’t.
The conclusions you’ve made about them not caring or supporting are not facts, they’re just thoughts.
Unless they’ve flat out told you that they don’t support you or care about you, it’s all in your head.
“But they shouldn’t do that because they know how it affects me.”
Ah, the “should.”
This is you trying to control another person’s actions just so you can feel better.
Do you want them to miss out on something they want just so you can have it easier? That’s what you’re asking for here.
Of course, you can make any request you’d like. You can tell them when you sit down that you’re not going to eat dessert. But if at the end of the meal that person asks if you want dessert, then what you make that mean is up to you. You could even tell them that you don’t want them to order dessert at all because it’s too hard for you to sit at the table with it there. But if they order anyway, then what you make that mean is up to you.
You can ask other people to do all the things you want, but it is not up to you to decide what they ultimately do.
If they want dessert, then why would you want to stop them from getting it? To make you happy? Even if it makes them unhappy?
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes.
Do you like being told what to eat? I doubt it. So why would they want to be told what to eat?
No one likes being told what to do. No one likes doing things they don’t want to do. This includes the people who make food available to you.
If the food is there, and you end up eating it, it’s not them sabotaging you, it’s you sabotaging yourself.
Plain and simple.
You’re the one deciding to eat it. Just because it’s there doesn’t mean you have to.
People are going to bring unhealthy food around you. It’s not going away. Instead of trying to avoid it all the time, which is nearly impossible, you must learn to be around it without eating all, or any of it. Until you do, take responsibility for your actions and stop blaming other people for what you decide to do. When you blame other people for your actions, you give away all your responsibility to them. You fall into victim mode.
“Poor me, all these people are out make me fail.”
No, they are not.
Well, maybe a few are, but even if that’s true, it’s still up to you to do what’s best for you. You can’t let their insecurities and failed attempts at eating healthy or losing weight ruin yours. You’re better than that. Show them how strong you are and hopefully you’ll inspire them to do the same….but only if they truly want to.
Instead of getting upset about another person offering food to you, or bringing on temptation, allow them to do whatever they want.
Then decide for yourself what you want to do that will put you closer to your goals.
It’s really important in moments like this that you are crystal clear on what you really want to do. Right now, when you’re not in the situation, decide how you would want to handle something like that. Prepare yourself for this inevitable obstacle that’s going to challenge you.
When someone offers you dessert, you can say no. Even if they ask you 50 times, you don’t have to have even one bite.
When someone leaves food at your home that you don’t want around, you can throw it away, or give it away. You don’t have to eat it just because it’s there.
When someone else is eating food that you don’t want to be eating, you can feel deprived as you watch them. It’s ok. You’re going to be fine. Actually, you’re going to be amazing when the feeling of deprivation subsides and you instead feel proud for not having eaten it. Then you can thank that person for having put temptation right in your face and giving you the opportunity to grow stronger.
Each time you say no, it gets easier and easier and you’re one step closer to reaching your goal.
Food is going to be everywhere. People are going to offer it to you and they’re going to eat it in front of you. It doesn’t mean anything about how they feel about you and it’s up to you to take responsibility for your own actions.